A deceptively fun and breezy novel that gracefully delineates the difference between dreaming about a relationship and actually having one, The Summer of Jordi Perez (and the Best Burger in Los Angeles) features a plus-size girl with plus-size dreams.
High-schooler Abby is sure she’s headed for a career in fashion. She’s already running a popular blog, sharing her personal style tips with plus-size fashionistas like herself. She’s also sure she’s attracted to girls, but for now she’s content to be the best friend who never gets kissed herself.
Things start to change when Abby lands a part-time internship at her favorite boutique, then finds herself in a mutual attraction with Jordi, her chic fellow intern. It’s Abby’s first chance for a real romance, but competing with Jordi for a paying job complicates matters, and Abby’s own untested assumptions about relationships are on a collision course with reality.
With plenty of fashion passion, plus-size moxie, and a lively cast of secondary characters that includes Abby’s best friend Maliah and her boyfriend, the hip but scattered boutique owner, and a new friend who enlists Abby’s help in locating the best burger in LA, the story moves along effortlessly. This is a book you don’t want to miss a word of.
Abby’s first-person narrative is full of wry observations and laugh-out-loud moments. When Abby’s health-food-blogging mother serves pieces of chicken wrapped in lettuce leaves as “tacos,” Abby comments, “[It’s] the kind of thing she features all the time on Eat Healthy with Norah!, but I more than occasionally just want to Eat Normally with My Family.”
The story ends with growth as well as surprises for Abby. The question of who gets the boutique job is a bit too easily resolved, but this doesn’t detract from all the book has to offer. The Summer of Jordi Perez is a treat with a heroine who’s not easily forgotten.
Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The publisher of this book provided free copies of the book to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. No fee was paid by the publisher for this review. Foreword Reviews only recommends books that we love. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.