The Exact Opposite of Okay - Laura Steven
I am so glad I waited in line at YALC for a copy of this, it was time very well spent. There are such great characters in this book.
I love Izzy, she's so brave, outspoken and sarcastic, her humour is perfect. Her grandmother Betty is the best character ever, she doesn't put up with any nonsense and is nothing but supportive of her granddaughter. You can see where Izzy gets her humour. Then there's the best friend, Ajita. She somehow just knows exactly what Izzy needs and her comments are beyond sarcastic. In fact, the only character that didn't jump out at me was Danny, the other best friend. This should have been a clue!!! (oops, um, spoiler alert???)
The book is written as a collection of Izzy's blog posts with occasional extra comments added in later that add even more comedy. Quite a serious theme treated with a dose of comedy that makes you laugh one minute and cry the next. You can't help feeling for what she goes through but it is dealt with in a way that never gets depressing.
Two one night stands in one evening is not a normal night, even for the wild and liberal Izzy, and unfortunately someone has taken photographs and posts them all over a website designed to specifically to trash her reputation. She needs to find out who is behind the website but none of her leads work out until the culprit makes a mistake and gives her the clue she needs to figure it out.
Luckily she has her friends and grandmother to help her through this challenging time. While it seems there are plenty of people ready to betray her, she also manages to make some new friends and realise that there is goodness in people that she might never have known otherwise. She does make some mistakes and unthinkingly manages to 'out' her friend but thankfully their friendship is strong enough to withstand this.
The end is wonderful and perfectly satisfying. The only thing I could add is that I would have loved to read more about what happened after Izzy and her friends set up their own website.
With all the nachos that Izzy and her friends eat, you need some tequila on the side. I've already made a margarita for The Ice Twins a while back so I decided a nice flavourful sangrita to sip with tequila is another perfect combination.
To make Tomato and Orange Sangrita, put the following ingredients into a small pitcher, mix well and chill in the fridge for a couple of hours. 1 cup of fresh orange juice, 1/2 cup tomato juice, 3 tbsp fresh lime juice, 1 tbsp grenadine, 1 1/2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce, 1/4 tsp salt and a pinch of black pepper. This makes 2 portions, to serve, pour into 2 shot glasses along with 2 shots of tequila. Sip together and enjoy!