Fin & Rye & Fireflies by Harry Cook

Hi everyone, back with another review of a queer book, who is surprised? This one is out today so don’t forget to add it on Goodreads and consider buying a copy from your local indie, Waterstones or Amazon! Hope you like the review! Sasha ❤

Fin & Rye & Fireflies by Harry Cook was a queer contemporary that was at once fun, enjoyable and heartwarming and also important and deep.

When Fin is caught kissing a boy, his homophobic parents decide to move to a new town in the hopes of giving Fin a new start so he can “straighten out”. However, here he meets a group of friends who make him feel more than ever that his parents are wrong to want him to change – lively, kind Poppy who immediately befriends him, her transgender girlfriend June who is braver than anyone Fin has met before, and Rye, the handsome and alluring boy who fin cannot help but fall for. 

This is a wonderful coming of age story with a heartwarming and adorable romance and queer found family that discusses important topics such as homophobia and conversion therapy, and I deeply enjoyed it.

It definitely shows how great this book was that despite the difficult and heart wrenching topic it discusses it’s still overall a fluffy and sweet book, full of fun, banter and friendship. 

Fin was a wonderful main character. He was brave and resilient, kind and awkward. I loved seeing him slowly become comfortable with his new friends and accept and love himself. He goes through so much in this book but is still so kind and loving. I ended up absolutely loving his character, and I really just wanted to give him a hug. He’s a wonderfully written character and realistic teenager, with his hopes and flaws and insecurities.

I didn’t expect Rye, the love interest, to get a POV too, but I found myself loving his perspective and the depth it gave his character. It was great to see how much he and Fin liked each other from both their perspectives, and Rye’s struggles with his anxiety added another important layer to this book.

I really loved the romance between these two – the chemistry was immediately clear and though it was slightly insta love I could really see how much these two made sense together, and loved seeing them become closer friends and eventually more. Their romance definitely lit up this book – it was adorable, vulnerable and heartwarming.

The topics discussed in this book are certainly heavy and I do urge you to check trigger warnings, but I thought they were tackled wonderfully. Fin’s parents shunning of his identity was a raw and unforgivable hurt and the scenes in the conversion therapy centre were claustrophobic and painful, but both of these things are harsh realities for queer teens and Fin & Rye & Fireflies was a testament to the strength and resilience that LGBTQ+ teenagers have, and it showed that amid these darkest points of life there can be a light. 

I throughly enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend it! 

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