Thanks to the publisher for inviting me on this blog tour and to NetGalley for providing the eARC.
Tweet Cute by Emma Lord
Release Date: January 21, 2020
Genre(s): YA Contemporary Romance
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“Tweet Cute delivers in every possible way: a perfect enemies-to-lovers romance, a whip-smart plotline, and endearingly real characters. I devoured it.” – Francesca Zappia, author of Eliza and Her Monsters
“Sweet and fun! An adorable debut that updates a classic romantic trope with a buzzy twist.” – Jenn Bennett, author of Alex, Approximately and Serious Moonlight
“A witty rom-com reinvention for the Twitter age, Tweet Cute pairs delicious online rivalry with deeply relatable insights on family pressure and growing up. This fresh, funny read had us hitting ‘favorite’ from page one.” – Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka, authors of Always Never Yours and If I’m Being Honest
Meet Pepper, swim team captain, chronic overachiever, and all-around perfectionist. Her family may be falling apart, but their massive fast-food chain is booming — mainly thanks to Pepper, who is barely managing to juggle real life while secretly running Big League Burger’s massive Twitter account.
Enter Jack, class clown and constant thorn in Pepper’s side. When he isn’t trying to duck out of his obscenely popular twin’s shadow, he’s busy working in his family’s deli. His relationship with the business that holds his future might be love/hate, but when Big League Burger steals his grandma’s iconic grilled cheese recipe, he’ll do whatever it takes to take them down, one tweet at a time.
All’s fair in love and cheese — that is, until Pepper and Jack’s spat turns into a viral Twitter war. Little do they know, while they’re publicly duking it out with snarky memes and retweet battles, they’re also falling for each other in real life — on an anonymous chat app Jack built.
As their relationship deepens and their online shenanigans escalate — people on the internet are shipping them?? — their battle gets more and more personal, until even these two rivals can’t ignore they were destined for the most unexpected, awkward, all-the-feels romance that neither of them expected.
TWEET CUTE delivers a fresh take on the ever-so classic and swoonworthy hate to love romance trope à la You’ve Got Mail but with Twitter instead of AOL and glorious amounts of mouthwatering descriptions of food. It not only gives us one of the cutest romances I’ve read in a long while, but also delves into the teen sphere of social media and pressures of being in high school expertly.
Our protagonists, Pepper and Jack (aka Pepperjack, aka my favorite cheese to put on my grilled cheese btw) are both fleshed out enough so that we are not only invested in them getting together but also who they are as their own people.
Pepper is an overachieving, perfectionist, people-pleaser. But she’s more than just what other people project onto her and what she in turns projects onto herself. Her character arc focus on how her need to fit in kind of stunts her relationships with others such as her mom and her sister Paige and her “rival” Pooja. Jack is the jokester who doesn’t take things too seriously because he expects people not to especially over his “golden son” twin brother Ethan. Both have insecurities as most teenagers do and the relatability of their struggles hits home with me. Pepper’s especially because Much like myself as a teen, Pepper focused hard on extracurricular activities and AP and honors classes despite not knowing what she actually wants to do when she sets off for college. (Fun fact I’m not in college right now because I still don’t know what I want to do).
The other characters are indeed as enjoyable but I wish could have been fleshed out more. Particularly Pooja (Pepper’s rival who actually may have been a true friend to her if she’d realize the truth) and Ethan, who has a boyfriend! Both offer representation that the main characters don’t (Pooja is Indian and Ethan has a boyfriend but it’s not confirmed whether he’s gay/bi/pan). The parents are both intriguing and complex. But I personally loved Grandma Belly. She reminded me of my own grandmother with her crassness.
Set in a fully realized NYC, there’s three plot lines running through the story. 1) The Twitter War which was fun and added conflict. 2) Pepper and Jack’s blossoming romance in the anonymous Weazel app he created but THEY DON’T KNOW!! 3) Pepper and Jack’s blossoming romance IRL which adds that nice juicy slow burn factor with awkward teenage flirting and communication breakdown.
I was interested to see how these storylines would thread together in what could have been a messy execution but its seamlessly done. It never felt like too much to take in.
I also have to point that this book is FOR TEENS. There are some contemporary YA novels that struggle to capture the modern teen interest but TWEET CUTE succeeds with its use and positive attitude to towards social media and meme culture. Emma Lord understands her audience and its shows.
I highly recommend this if you want to start your year of off with quick, easy to read and devour fluff filled romance.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Emma Lord is a digital media editor and writer living in New York City, where she spends whatever time she isn’t writing either running or belting show tunes in community theater. She graduated from the University of Virginia with a major in psychology and a minor in how to tilt your computer screen so nobody will notice you updating your fan fiction from the back row. She was raised on glitter, grilled cheese, and a whole lot of love. Her sun sign is Hufflepuff, but she is a Gryffindor rising. TWEET CUTE is her debut novel. You can find her geeking out online at @dilemmalord on Twitter.