Hi friends!! It’s been a sec, but I’m back today with a review of “Just Your Local Bisexual Disaster” by Andrea Mosqueda–which came out today!
A digital ARC of “Just Your Local Bisexual Disaster” was provided to me by Fierce Reads via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Read on to check out the official synopsis of the book, my review, and a bit about the author!
In this voice-driven young adult debut by Andrea Mosqueda, Maggie Gonzalez needs a date to her sister’s quinceañera – and fast.
Growing up in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley, Maggie Gonzalez has always been a little messy, but she’s okay with that. After all, she has a great family, a goofy group of friends, a rocky romantic history, and dreams of being a music photographer. Tasked with picking an escort for her little sister’s quinceañera, Maggie has to face the truth: that her feelings about her friends—and her future—aren’t as simple as she’d once believed.
As Maggie’s search for the perfect escort continues, she’s forced to confront new (and old) feelings for three of her friends: Amanda, her best friend and first-ever crush; Matthew, her ex-boyfriend twice-over who refuses to stop flirting with her, and Dani, the new girl who has romantic baggage of her own. On top of this romantic disaster, she can’t stop thinking about the uncertainty of her own plans for the future and what that means for the people she loves.
As the weeks wind down and the boundaries between friendship and love become hazy, Maggie finds herself more and more confused with each photo. When her tried-and-true medium causes more chaos than calm, Maggie needs to figure out how to avoid certain disaster—or be brave enough to dive right into it.
There were so many things I loved about this book. From our characters and the dynamics between them feeling fully fleshed out and understood, to the little love notes to Latinx/Chicanx culture, to the awesome portrayal of the bisexual experience.
I loved how messy the main character, Maggie, was because while she might not have had it all figured out, I thought she was brave for acknowledging that and putting in the work to figure out her emotions. At 16/17, that was an extremely mature thing of her to be aware of and while she might have gone about it in a way that was sort of weird, ultimately I think she made the right choices.
Something I also enjoyed so much in this book was the family dynamic between Gonzalez women. Scenes with Maggie, her sisters, and their mom were some of my favorite to read. I love that they all have each other’s backs and support each other no matter what. It’s also always nice seeing similarities to your own family and culture on page, and feeling that representation. Something as simple as Maggie serving herself chorizo and eggs in a flour tortilla for breakfast made me tear up.
While this book was incredible with its LGBTQ representation, its focus on Latinx/Chicanx culture, and its discourse on socioeconomic status, there was also something it focused on that meant a great deal to me personally. This book was in part a love letter to live music and the brown kids from small towns and cities who cling to it.
I’m the brown kid from a city the bands I loved overlooked on every tour in favor of bigger, richer, and safer cities. Maggie talks about wanting to be a tour photographer to bring the outside world to kids in the Rio Grande Valley who, like her, could only access it digitally. There was a time in my life when my entire world revolved around vlogging my concert experiences. Sure the documented memories were partly for me, but they were also for the people who couldn’t access their favorite bands like I was unable to for many years. I knew what it was so sit on YouTube for hours at a time, watching concert video after concert video, so this short paragraph spoke to me on such a deep and personal level:
“I wanted to be a tour photographer almost immediately after I started paying attention to music that wasn’t on the radio. The bands we liked never came to the Valley, and Amanda and I always struggled to get rides to concerts whenever they did deign to come here, since they’d usually come to McAllen, forty-five minutes away. I lived vicariously through Instagram live feeds and YouTube concert diaries, Twitter feuds and TikToks, my tiny phone screen a window to the world I craved.” [Quote pulled from the digital ARC of Just Your Local Bisexual Disaster and might differ from the published edition.]
I thoroughly loved “Just Your Local Bisexual Disaster.” I felt connected to Maggie throughout the entire book and loved her group of friends and her family. It was littered with pop culture references that made me smile, had great representation, and touched my heart multiple times. I’m so glad I read it.
★★★★☆ (4/5 stars)
About The Author
Andrea Mosqueda is a Chicana writer. She was born and raised in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley. She currently lives in Brooklyn with her partner and works in the publishing industry as an assistant editor. When she’s not writing or editing, she can be found doing her makeup, drinking too much coffee, and angsting over children’s media. Just Your Local Bisexual Disaster is her first book.