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The Lesbiana's Guide to Catholic School

The Lesbiana's Guide to Catholic School

by Sonora Reyes

Narrated by Karla Serrato

Unabridged — 9 hours, 28 minutes

Sonora Reyes
The Lesbiana's Guide to Catholic School

The Lesbiana's Guide to Catholic School

by Sonora Reyes

Narrated by Karla Serrato

Unabridged — 9 hours, 28 minutes

Sonora Reyes

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Overview

Longlisted for the National Book Award

A National Bestseller

A sharply funny and moving debut novel about a queer Mexican American girl navigating Catholic school, while falling in love and learning to celebrate her true self. Perfect for fans of Erika L. Sánchez, Leah Johnson, and Gabby Rivera.

Sixteen-year-old Yamilet Flores prefers to be known for her killer eyeliner, not for being one of the only Mexican kids at her new, mostly white, very rich Catholic school. But at least here no one knows she's gay, and Yami intends to keep it that way. 

After being outed by her crush and ex-best friend before transferring to Slayton Catholic, Yami has new priorities: keep her brother out of trouble, make her mom proud, and, most importantly, don't fall in love. Granted, she's never been great at any of those things, but that's a problem for Future Yami. 

The thing is, it's hard to fake being straight when Bo, the only openly queer girl at school, is so annoyingly perfect. And smart. And talented. And cute. So cute. Either way, Yami isn't going to make the same mistake again. If word got back to her mom, she could face a lot worse than rejection. So she'll have to start asking, WWSGD: What would a straight girl do? 

Told in a captivating voice that is by turns hilarious, vulnerable, and searingly honest, The Lesbiana's Guide to Catholic School explores the joys and heartaches of living your full truth out loud.



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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

04/11/2022

Transferring to a new school should mean a fresh start for 16-year-old Mexican American lesbian Yamilet Flores, one that she desperately needs after being outed at her old school by her crush and ex-best-friend. Luckily, her mother didn’t find out, and since no one at her new school knows she’s queer, Yami plans to keep it that way. But Slayton Catholic presents new problems: her mother expects Yami to watch over her younger brother Cesar, who is navigating depression; the student body is overwhelmingly white; and it’s difficult to keep her re-closeted mouth shut around the homophobia that’s seemingly baked into the curriculum. Slayton’s only bright spot is outspoken Chinese American lesbian Bo Taylor, the only openly queer person at school. But if Yami wants to maintain her relationship with her mother, getting to know another lesbian, let alone dating one, isn’t an option. Reyes’s hopeful debut excels in its honest depiction of family dynamics, highlighting Yami’s sense of responsibility for Cesar and her loving but tense relationship with her mother. As the narrative vulnerably tackles difficult subjects such as intolerant religious institutions and living with mental illness, Yami’s sardonic voice adds levity and heart. Ages 13–up. Agent: Alexandra Levick, Writers House. (May)

From the Publisher

Filled with humor and love, this fast-paced novel will have readers immersed in Yamilet’s world, rooting for her and her loved ones all the way.” — School Library Journal

“Reyes’s hopeful debut excels in its honest depiction of family dynamics, highlighting Yami’s sense of responsibility for Cesar and her loving but tense relationship with her mother. As the narrative vulnerably tackles difficult subjects such as intolerant religious institutions and living with mental illness, Yami’s sardonic voice adds levity and heart.” — Publishers Weekly

“Yami’s first-person narration is compelling, as she acknowledges her own flaws freely and saves her best opinions for everyone else. The slow realization that she is also worth admiration and even love is all the more satisfying for the work taken to get there… Reyes doesn’t dismiss harsher realities, but rather tempers them with a steady drumbeat that life does not have to be anywhere near perfect to still be deliriously joyful a lot of the time. ” — Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“The portrayal of found family and the threads of love and acceptance woven into this story make it a satisfying read with a hopeful ending….A textured and gratifying novel.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Debut author Reyes does not shy away from serious issues that teenagers face, approaching them with the utmost respect…. Despite [some weightier themes], Yami learns to find positivity in her life through her family's and friends' encouragement to just be honest. Readers will applaud both Yami's and Caesar’s growth and bravery.” — Booklist

The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School by Sonora Reyes is a story about bravery, love, and so much more. It’s about discovering what makes you feel most at home within yourself, and the comfort that comes with sharing those parts with the people you love, even when it’s scary. With a sweet sapphic romance and fiercely loyal friends, this book is a warm, protective hug for teens who are fighting to be seen as themselves in a world that wants them to hide.” — Aiden Thomas, New York Times bestselling author of Cemetery Boys

"Full of heart, humor, and a swoon-worthy romance, The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School is the recovering Catholic school student’s road to healing. Balancing themes of self-advocacy and self-discovery with comedy and romance tropes, this is a must-read for queer teens growing into their own." — Emery Lee, author of Meet Cute Diary

“Deeply moving, laugh-out-loud funny, and swoony, Reyes packs it all in, in this powerful coming-of-age story about unapologetically loving ourselves—and others.” — J.Elle, New York Times bestselling author of Wings of Ebony

“A bold debut that invites us into a world of cultural specificity and queer love through the voice of a heroine who is impossible to resist. I’m so thrilled for readers to go on this uniquely hilarious and deeply moving journey of self-acceptance." — Abdi Nazemian, author of Stonewall Honor book Like a Love Story

“With off the charts heart and humor, The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School is an immediate favorite. Sonora’s voice is one to watch!” — Julie Murphy, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin’

Booklist

Debut author Reyes does not shy away from serious issues that teenagers face, approaching them with the utmost respect…. Despite [some weightier themes], Yami learns to find positivity in her life through her family's and friends' encouragement to just be honest. Readers will applaud both Yami's and Caesar’s growth and bravery.

Julie Murphy

With off the charts heart and humor, The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School is an immediate favorite. Sonora’s voice is one to watch!

Aiden Thomas

The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School by Sonora Reyes is a story about bravery, love, and so much more. It’s about discovering what makes you feel most at home within yourself, and the comfort that comes with sharing those parts with the people you love, even when it’s scary. With a sweet sapphic romance and fiercely loyal friends, this book is a warm, protective hug for teens who are fighting to be seen as themselves in a world that wants them to hide.

Emery Lee

Full of heart, humor, and a swoon-worthy romance, The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School is the recovering Catholic school student’s road to healing. Balancing themes of self-advocacy and self-discovery with comedy and romance tropes, this is a must-read for queer teens growing into their own.

Abdi Nazemian

A bold debut that invites us into a world of cultural specificity and queer love through the voice of a heroine who is impossible to resist. I’m so thrilled for readers to go on this uniquely hilarious and deeply moving journey of self-acceptance."

Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

Yami’s first-person narration is compelling, as she acknowledges her own flaws freely and saves her best opinions for everyone else. The slow realization that she is also worth admiration and even love is all the more satisfying for the work taken to get there… Reyes doesn’t dismiss harsher realities, but rather tempers them with a steady drumbeat that life does not have to be anywhere near perfect to still be deliriously joyful a lot of the time. 

New York Times bestselling author of Wings of Ebon J.Elle

Deeply moving, laugh-out-loud funny, and swoony, Reyes packs it all in, in this powerful coming-of-age story about unapologetically loving ourselves—and others.

Booklist

Debut author Reyes does not shy away from serious issues that teenagers face, approaching them with the utmost respect…. Despite [some weightier themes], Yami learns to find positivity in her life through her family's and friends' encouragement to just be honest. Readers will applaud both Yami's and Caesar’s growth and bravery.

School Library Journal

07/29/2022

Gr 8 Up—Yamilet Flores and her brother, Cesar, are set to start the school year at Slayton Catholic, both leaving behind unhappy pasts at Rover High. Cesar has a habit of getting into fights at school for reasons Yamilet can't figure out, and Yamilet is struggling with a betrayal by ex-best friend Bianca, who revealed to others Yamilet is gay. Hoping to avoid a similar situation at Slayton, Yamilet pretends to be straight as she navigates the school. Soon she falls in with a good group of friends that includes Bo, a Chinese American girl who is kind, intelligent, confident, and out. Working hard to make money in case she is kicked out of home when her truth is revealed, Yami doesn't always pay attention to what's happening with Cesar. Yamilet is refreshing and genuine, starting off as someone who does not always stand up for herself and evolving into someone fiercely protective of her family, her friends, and herself. Yami and Cesar, who both struggle with a sense of shame, deal with their feelings differently while also providing each other with love and support. Yami glows with pride for her Mexican and Indigenous ancestry, and although she stands out in Slayton, where most of the student body is white, she finds support from many kind and considerate classmates. Difficult topics, such as suicide, are explored. VERDICT Filled with humor and love, this fast-paced novel will have readers immersed in Yamilet's world, rooting for her and her loved ones all the way.—Selenia Paz

Kirkus Reviews

2022-02-09
Yamilet is a gay, Mexican American 16-year-old who’s about to start Catholic school.

She tells herself it has more to do with being there for Cesar, her genius brother one year her junior who skipped a grade and earned a scholarship, but there’s more to it. She’s also glad to start over away from ex–best friend Bianca, who outed her to their social circle. It’s not easy for Yami to lose someone she trusted as much as Bianca, especially when she feels alone and is still nursing the heartbreak of her dad’s being deported to Mexico 6 years ago. She loves her busy, hardworking, very Catholic mom, but that doesn’t mean Mami would accept her sexuality if she knew the truth. In her new, wealthy, and mostly White school, Yami immediately faces casual racism, but it’s not all bad. She also meets Bo, a Chinese American girl who has chosen the school uniform’s trousers over skirts—paired with rainbow Vans, no less—and they immediately get along. Yami likes how outspoken and confident Bo is, but she’s also intimidated by her new friend’s being an out lesbian. As their friendship blossoms into more, so do the problems with keeping who she is a secret from the world. The portrayal of found family and the threads of love and acceptance woven into this story make it a satisfying read with a hopeful ending.

A textured and gratifying novel. (author’s note) (Fiction. 13-18)

Product Details

BN ID: 2940176289411
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 06/04/2022
Edition description: Unabridged

Customer Reviews