A bright, poignant, and deeply funny autobiographical account of coming of age as an amputee cancer survivor, from Josh Sundquist: Paralympic ski racer, YouTube star, and motivational speaker.
Josh Sundquist only ever had one girlfriend.
For twenty-three hours.
In eighth grade.
Why was Josh still single? To find out, he tracked down the girls he had tried to date and asked them straight up: What went wrong?
The results of Josh’s semiscientific, wholly hilarious investigation are captured here. From a disastrous Putt-Putt date involving a backward prosthetic foot, to his introduction to CFD (Close Fast Dancing), to a misguided “grand gesture” at a Miss America pageant, this story is about looking for love–or at least a girlfriend–in all the wrong places.
Some YA authors struggle with writing angst and awkwardness, or fail to point out the hilarity in it all. After reading this book, either Josh Sundquist took some great classes, or he’s had some pretty cringe-worthy experiences. But, let’s face it, who hasn’t? And especially as a teenager.
Speaking of awkward, this review is probably going to be pretty choppy, because I don’t even know how to explain this book.
Okay. I’m just going to get this out in a few points.
- I know a lot of people that I would recommend this book to, most of them close friends of mine.
- WE SHOULD HANG OUT SOMETIME is seriously weird sometimes, in the most normal ways. Sundquist isn’t afraid to say the things that teens think, say or do; he does it in a manner that isn’t crude but actually kind of funny.
- WE SHOULD HANG OUT SOMETIME leaves these life lessons inside you in the most peculiar ways. It says that life sucks sometimes, that sometimes people leave and that’s for the better, or the worse. It says that sometimes you should just go for it, and moments can be weirdly beautiful.
- This story is honest, relatable, funny and ultimately hopeful. Pretty well written.
And that’s basically everything I liked about this story. I watch Josh Sundquist’s YouTube videos from time to time, but nothing made me feel like I knew him more than this story. I really enjoyed reading it, and it’s pretty quick. The little illustrations were awesome as well.
A few things I didn’t like included the set up and execution. The narration falters sometimes because of the way the story is set up, but it also works sometimes because it allows clarity to the reader. Overall, it wasn’t bad–but there were times when I wished the stories were more connected.
WE SHOULD HANG OUT SOMETIME is repetitive at times. I get that part of that makes it realistic, and that crushing on someone you never really got, or were friends with in the first place, happens–but it slowed down the pace.
Overall, a pretty good read. I would recommend it to most boys 14 to 17, and some girls. Probably not for older readers. For people who ever wanted to see a grown-up version of WONDER, or a teenage version of HYPERBOLE AND A HALF. 3.5 stars.
pg count for the hardback: 336