Warning: This book review contains spoilers.
Initially, I picked up this book because the cover seemed intriguing. Yeah, I know. We shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. But I couldn’t help it! The cover was as if Marvel clashed with young adult contemporary romance, and who doesn’t love that?! As one who likes to read comics from time to time, this combination peaked my interested.
The Only Thing Worse Than Me is You by Lily Anderson is funny, adorable and is filled with so many pop culture references that you lose track- but they’re all in good nature and keep you entertained. Her début romantic novel is about a group of friends who attend a school that prides itself on genius level IQ and ranking. There is no competitive environment quite like this one. But no one cares about the ranking system more than Trixie Watson, who’s main goal is to get her name over her rival Ben West.
The rivalry between Ben West and Trixie Watson was by far one of my favorite parts of the story. These two, who are now seniors in high school, had it out for each other ever since a misunderstanding happened on the playground. Since then, Ben and Trixie haven’t been able to see eye-to-eye on anything. Though they have mutual friends and one of her best friends ends up in a relationship with one of Ben’s friends, that doesn’t’ change the fact that her fourth place ranking just isn’t cutting it anymore. There’s no better time than senior year to get that third ranking.
Though Ben and Trixie like to make verbal jabs at each other, it did seem a lot like how elementary school kids flirts with one another- how a boy teases the girl he likes and the girl goes along with it. We’re all familiar with that kind of situation. But after some twists and turns, these two figured out they had a lot of things in common after all.
Even though Trixie was the main character of the story, Ben West was my favorite. His geeky charm, intelligence, and when he finally got a haircut and got rid of the mustache, what wasn’t there to love?! His personality and how he carried himself reminded me a lot of someone who I adored on The Bachelorette. If you have read the book and watch The Bachelorette, I hope you can agree with me on this. (Side note: I might have mentioned this to Lily Anderson which might have turned it into a Tom Hiddleston/Marvel conversation.)
Overall, The Only Thing Worse Than Me is You is a celebration for all things nerd and academia. Though the plot was a little predictable, the witty banter, nerdy references and test of friendship and camaraderie are elements that make up for it. It is a light-hearted read, filled with drama and all things related to entertainment and pop culture that any bookish nerd would enjoy. From the references to Marvel to Tom Hiddleston and Chris Evans, The Only Thing Worse Than Me is You does not shy away from the nerd culture but instead embraces it.