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Meg & Linus Hanna Nowinski

Description

Why focus on your own problems when your friend's love life is so much easier to fix?

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Full Description

Meg and Linus are best friends bound by a shared love of school, a coffee obsession, and being queer. It’s not always easy to be the nerdy lesbian or gay kid in a suburban town. But they have each other. And a few Star Trek boxed sets. They're pretty happy.

But then Sophia, Meg’s longtime girlfriend, breaks up with Meg. Linus starts tutoring the totally dreamy new kid, Danny—and Meg thinks setting them up is the perfect project to distract herself from her own heartbreak. But Linus isn’t so sure Danny even likes guys, and maybe Sophia isn't quite as out of the picture as Meg thought she was. . . .

Excerpt

“Meg?” he asks and stops walking, and when I turn to him he looks worried. “Is everything okay?”

I give up, shoulders slumping, and hang my head to stare at the dark ground of the parking lot beneath my feet. Sometimes it just really sucks having a best friend who actually knows you. “Not really?”

“What happened?”

I brush my hair from my face and can't quite make myself look up at him. I haven't actually told anyone other than my mom, telling people will just make it real, but Linus is my best friend and it's not like he isn't going to find out either way sooner or later.

“Sophia dumped me.”

He stares at me as if I've been speaking Elvish. Except, he'd probably have understood that. “Um. Excuse me?”

“Look, it's not really hard to understand at all: Sophia broke up with me. It's really a very simple concept. We were together. Now we're not. Do you need me to write it down for you?” I wince a little, shocked at myself for talking to him this way. I have no idea what's wrong with me today. But because Linus is the sweetest person alive, he doesn't turn on his heel and walk away from me like I would have deserved. Instead, he looks really worried, takes a careful step closer to me.

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Purchase Info

Hardcover: $17.99
ISBN 9781250098603

E-book: $9.99
ISBN 9781250098610

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Praise

"Every queer kid in high school needs to read this novel. ... It’s exactly the sort of relevant and positive portrayal that is needed." —Teen Vogue

"Told in short chapters with alternating points of view, Meg & Linus is a story of friendship, stable families, and sweet romance. The fact that the protagonist and supporting characters are gay is a nonissue, which makes this a refreshing read." —VOYA

"Meg and Linus’s romantic lives take center stage, but first-time author Nowinski also addresses the difficulty of being queer in a small town, where pursuing a relationship requires confidence, and can involve a fear of outing or offending—all of which comes into play as Meg reflects on her past and Linus considers the possibility of a future with Danny." —Publishers Weekly

"Readers experience [Meg's] pain and Linus’ uncertainties as the story moves back and forth between their respective perspectives. . . . this is one of the rare LGBTQ books to feature both a gay boy and a lesbian who are friends." —Booklist

"I also love that friendship takes center stage in this story. . . . I didn't want the story to end! Such a beautiful story." —Rita, Swoon Reader

"I liked that both characters are queer, and while it is a part of the story, it's not the story itself. . . . It's delightfully refreshing." —Tammy Wanzer, Swoon Reader

"What made this unique was the strong friendship between the two narrators (who were not romantically interested in each other), and how that friendship influenced their romances with their partners. It was also refreshing to have LGBT representation that was beyond stereotypes." —Julia Durrant, Swoon Reader

"This book is a really lovely story about young love and being true to yourself despite the pressures to conform." —Jill Watkins, Swoon Reader

"Get ready to fall in love with two oddball nerdy best friends. . . . This adorable, warm hearted contemporary YA is tremendously funny, and full of some seriously swoony moments. . . . The world needs more diverse love stories, whether that be long time girlfriends working through some issues, first crushes or friendships." —Charlie, Swoon Reader

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62 comments on "Meg & Linus"

Steph McK on June 23, 2015, 8:38 a.m. said:

Steph McK


For my daughter's sake, I wish there were more books like this - a story that shows gay teens like her living normal lives with the same trials and tribulations as everyone else. Falling in love, having great friends, screwing things up occasionally, but showing that everything is OK, and can even work out rather perfectly. The characters are real and likeable, and immediately relatable, and Hannah has done a beautiful job of presenting this lovely story where friendship is the focus, and romance more of a fun sideline. I hope everyone has a Meg or a Linus in their life.

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Hanna Nowinski on June 24, 2015, 5:46 a.m. said:

Hanna Nowinski


Steph - THANK YOU. This means a lot to me. You picked up on all the things that were important to me while writing this. I'm so glad you found the characters likeable and relatable. I am a huge fan of people being nice to each other and it's so good to hear that you liked that in this story. THANK YOU.

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Vera Garnes Burris on June 23, 2015, 10:49 a.m. said:

Vera Garnes Burris


I'm just about at the nine percent mark and was pulled out of the story by a lapse in story. Wasn't going to mention it if someone else had but since no one else said anything about it, when Meg first tells Linus about breaking up with Sophia, he asks her if she wants to come over after school and watch sad movies and eat too much sugar. In his third narration he goes home, can't find anything to do and says that he wishes he had invited Meg over.
Other than that though, I like their voices. It might be a little too preachy about other people's superficial choices (since they make them too, with Linus's private gush about how cute Danny is) but it's nice that they care so much about each other. They're people you get the sense will do very well the rest of their lives, sweater vests and all

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Hanna Nowinski on June 24, 2015, 5:49 a.m. said:

Hanna Nowinski


Thank you, Vera! I'm going to have to check that part again - thanks so much for pointing it out, somehow that must have escaped me. But I'm glad you like their voices! And I do hope they will do well with the rest of their lives. :)

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Martyna Szramel on June 23, 2015, 7:03 p.m. said:

Martyna Szramel


Wonderful story! I love how the author created this sweet little world without making it predictable and overly saccharine. Can't wait to see what else Ms. Nowinski has in store!

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Hanna Nowinski on June 24, 2015, 5:51 a.m. said:

Hanna Nowinski


Oh gosh, thank you! That's so nice of you, thanks so much for reading and commenting! <3

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Rachel Davidson Leigh on June 23, 2015, 7:04 p.m. said:

Rachel Davidson Leigh


So many reviewers have already commented on the sweetness of this story, on Meg's bull-in-a-china-shop love and Linus' easy joy. Those reviewers are all completely right. I also want to add my appreciation for the families in the novel. So often, in YA lit and especially in LGBTQ YA, the parents fall off the page, only to reappear when the novel needs a handy, retrograde villain. These parents are neither villains or Leave it to Beaver caricatures. Instead, they are simply people that play an important, and largely positive, role in their kids' lives. On top of the already lovely romance and friendship in the story, I think those real-to-life parents deserve a little love.

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Hanna Nowinski on June 24, 2015, 5:56 a.m. said:

Hanna Nowinski


Rachel, thank you! Ahh, yes, "Meg’s bull-in-a-china-shop love," that might be the best description I have heard of it yet! I like it and it made me laugh out loud, it sounds so accurate. I'm really glad that you liked the parents, I thought a lot about their home lives to create a believable world around those characters and it makes me happy that those parents are getting a little love too. :) THANK YOU so much. <3

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Vera Garnes Burris on June 26, 2015, 12:57 a.m. said:

Vera Garnes Burris


I've just read through the first study date. Sophia really does sound like a great person. I loved her confrontation with the Sports Jerseys. Linus seems to have good taste as Danny is cute and is even flirting a little. At least, I hope that's what it is- hate to think he's leading the guy on.
I think the story is better when there's dialogue. I still like Linus and Meg's voices, but everything in moderation...

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Hanna Nowinski on June 27, 2015, 2:26 a.m. said:

Hanna Nowinski


Thank you! I'm glad you like their voices and the dialogue! Hope you enjoy the rest of the story!

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