June 20, 2021

#BookReview: Not My Problem by @CiaraNicG

Synopsis: Aideen has plenty of problems she can’t fix. Her best (and only) friend is pulling away. Her mother’s drinking problem is a constant concern. She’s even running out of outlandish diseases to fake so she can skip PE.

But when Aideen stumbles on her nemesis, overachiever Meabh Kowalski, in the midst of a full-blown meltdown, she sees a problem that—unlike her own disaster of a life—seems refreshingly easy to solve. Meabh is desperate to escape her crushing pile of extracurriculars. Aideen volunteers to help. By pushing Meabh down the stairs.

Problem? Solved. Meabh’s sprained ankle is the perfect excuse to ditch her overwhelming schedule. But when another student learns about their little scheme and brings Aideen another “client” who needs her “help,” it kicks off a semester of traded favors, ill-advised hijinks, and an unexpected chance at love. Fixing other people’s problems won’t fix her own, but it might be the push she needs to start.


Rating: 4 Stars
My Review: This was a great story about one girls idea to help out the spoiled kids so they owe her favors and I have to say that its genius!!  Aideen is dealing with some heavy topics in this one. Mainly her mothers alcoholism. The plot was authentic and the LGBTQ themes was not a plot in the story. It was just there and that was wonderful that it wasn't at the forefront.  Just for the fact that it shouldn't be.  Wither the MC is straight or gay etc it shouldn't matter.  I can't wait for more. 

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up—In this witty and engaging novel, Irish author Smyth creates a flawed teen girl, Aideen, who makes a credible journey from self-protectively tough to ready and willing to face her main problem: her single mother's neglectful alcoholism. When Aideen makes a snap decision to help the principal's overachieving, overscheduled, and generally disliked daughter, she begins doing secret favors for classmates in return for them owing her their help. She develops unexpected feelings for one of her clients and makes a new friend in Kavi, who is chatty and humorous but also has his own problems as, Aideen discovers, everyone does. The story unfolds effortlessly, detailing both suspenseful and hilarious moments, as does real life. Populated with believable high school friends and very few adults, Aideen and most other characters are white, and Kavi is Indian. Here, Aideen's lesbian identity is not a plot point, but a detail that gives her authenticity. VERDICT This engaging novel will hook readers immediately. Recommended for all collections serving teens.—Francisca Goldsmith, Lib. Ronin, Worcester, MA


“Engaging and enjoyable. A noteworthy take on vulnerability and seeking help that doesn’t offer platitudes.” -- Kirkus Reviews

Praise for The Falling in Love Montage:  “An emotionally stirring queer romance with witty, playful dialogue.”    — Publishers Weekly (starred review)
-- No Source

“Delightfully brash and no-nonsense. Pleasantly and audaciously fills a gap in queer romance.”
-- Kirkus Reviews

"A meet-cute in the style of Jenny Han, and just as sweet and cinematic as YA rom-com fans will expect." -- Booklist

“A snarky and sincere romp through meet-cutes and grand romantic gestures, this book is a must-read for fans of Becky Albertali and Morgan Matson.” --   Ashley Poston, author of Geekerella and The Princess and the Fangirl

“A joyous, hilarious, big-hearted book with the kind of electric, rollicking voice that makes you want to live in its pages forever.” -- Jeff Zentner, Morris Award-winning author of Rayne & Delilah's Midnite Matinee

“A charming romp of a rom-com about the delights and terrors of falling in love. Saoirse is a heroine for the ages; she is smart, flawed, funny, and—when she lets her guard down—achingly vulnerable. This book will make your heart sing. Read it.” --  Misa Sugiura, award-winning author of It's Not Like It's a Secret and This Time Will Be Different

“A book that manages to be both tenderly gutting and absolutely hilarious. I want to be best friends with Saoirse Clarke.” --  Dahlia Adler, author of Under the Lights

“A slow-burn summer romance narrated by a beautifully snarky heroine who likes to pretend that she doesn’t have a heart of gold. This book was made for those endless-feeling summer nights.” --  Aminah Mae Safi, author of Not the Girls You're Looking For and Tell Me How You Really Feel

“Everything I wanted and so much more. How refreshing to read about two girls who like girls who find each other in the perfect meet cute. You’ll want to read this one again and again.” -- Jaye Robin Brown, author of Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit and The Meaning of Birds

“The romantic story all queer girls deserve: funny, flirty, and absolutely perfect.” -- Camryn Garrett, author of Full Disclosure

About the Author

Ciara Smyth studied drama, teaching, and then social work at university. She thought she didn’t know what she wanted to be when she grew up. She became a writer so she wouldn’t have to grow up. She enjoys jigging (verb: to complete a jigsaw puzzle), playing the violin badly, and having serious conversations with her pets. Ciara has lived in Belfast for over ten years and still doesn’t really know her way around. Visit her online at www.ciarasmyth.com.

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FTC Guidelines: In accordance with FTC guidelines regarding endorsements and testimonials for bloggers, I would like my readers to know that many of the books I review are provided to me for free by the publisher or author of the book in exchange for an honest review. If am compensated for any reviews on this site I will state that post has been sponsored. 


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