“What happens when a picture reveals what we can’t say, when art is truer than life, and how falling in love is easy, except when it’s not” (Tregay, 2014). In a judgmental society, it is often difficult to fit in, but even more difficult to embrace what makes you stand out. Sarah Tregay explores the difficulty of expressing yourself in high school, in her novel Fan Art. Fan Art follows Jamie, a senior in high school, as he deals with one of the most terrifying feelings known to all high school students, falling for your best friend. Although the novel was a heartwarming and fun read, it was definitely not my favorite. Character development in the book was poor and I found myself struggling to keep up with the number of characters. However that wasn’t my only struggle. The entire novel is based off of Jamie’s fear to come out to his best friend, Mason. He is apprehensive because he doesn’t want their friendship to be ruined by his homosexuality. As his fear of being stereotyped grows throughout the novel he continues to criticize other minorities in his school. I liked the book, don’t get me wrong. It was funny, cute, and easy to understand Jamie’s struggle. I just don’t feel as if it did the LGBT community justice. One aspect of the novel I thoroughly enjoyed, was Sarah Tregay’s use of art to express the feelings of some of the main characters. She incorporated poetry and graphic design in a way that allowed me to really connect with the overall theme of the novel.
~Katie McCarthy, Teen Advisory Board Member