Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Before I Read Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Before I read a book, I look at its cover. Despite what people say, you can tell a lot about a book based simply on what it looks like on the outside. Although you cannot judge a story by its cover, the outward appearance can draw you in and make you want to read the words inside. I love talking about covers maybe as much as I love talking about the novels themselves, so I started a feature to spotlight these essential works of art.

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Release: April 7, 2015 from Balzer + Bray
Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.
Nothing about this cover is ordinary. The bright red is sure to draw viewers in and stand out on bookshelves next to more subdued colors. Even more original is the hilarious title, which will hold readers' attention long after the cover's color scheme catches their eyes.

But what really interests me about this cover is the headless boy, the way his face has been replaced by a speech bubble. This design choice truly captures the book's conflict—Simon does not want to show the world his true self; he only wants to maintain the drama-free fa├žade he creates with lies-by-omission. As a result, this cover makes the protagonist's awkwardness and introversion immediately palpable.

But according to every review I have read, there is more to Simon than what meets the eye on his book's cover. I cannot wait to read Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda to learn more about this sure-to-be brilliant protagonist.


  1. What an amazing cover! If I were in a bookshop I would definitely pick this up. I have read some very encouraging things about this too, so I can't wait for your review!

    Aeriko @

  2. I LOVE the cover and your interpretation of it blew me away, I never look at a book cover and analyze everything about the story as well as the structure of the cover like you do :) That's an amazing thing that I believe everyone must do before diving into a book.

    I'm waiting eagerly for this one as well! I've heard nothing but amazing things :)

    - Jumana @

  3. I can't wait to see what you think of this one Emily - it's one of my most anticipated reads with all the glowing reviews it's gotten, so I hope you end up enjoying it! ♥


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