Hello, and happy Monday! This week is going to busy for me at school because of finals, but it’s only a three day week, which is really nice. I’m so excited for the break, and I’m hoping to have lots of time to read, write and relax. Anyways, today I’m very excited to bring you my review of a book that I can already tell is going to be one of my favorites of the year: The One True Me and You, by Remi K. England. I can’t wait to share my thoughts on this fun and emotional young adult romance, and I hope that you like my review!
The One True Me and You
Author: Remi K. England
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: March 1st, 2022
Genre: YA contemporary romance
*This review is spoiler free.*
One small fandom convention. One teen beauty pageant. One meet cute waiting to happen.
Up and coming fanfic author Kaylee Beaumont is internally screaming at the chance to finally meet her fandom friends in real life and spend a weekend at GreatCon. She also has a side quest for the weekend:
Try out they/them pronouns to see how it feels
Wear more masculine-presenting cosplay
Kiss a girl for the first time
It’s… a lot, and Kay mostly wants to lie face down on the hotel floor. Especially when her hometown bully, Miss North Carolina, shows up in the very same hotel. But there’s this con-sponsored publishing contest, and the chance to meet her fandom idols… and then, there’s Teagan.
Pageant queen Teagan Miller (Miss Virginia) has her eye on the much-needed prize: the $25,000 scholarship awarded to the winner of the Miss Cosmic Teen USA pageant. She also has secrets:
She loves the dresses but hates the tiaras
She’s a giant nerd for everything GreatCon
She’s gay af
If Teagan can just keep herself wrapped up tight for one more weekend, she can claim the scholarship and go off to college out and proud. If she’s caught, she could lose everything she’s worked for. If her rival, Miss North Carolina, has anything to do with it, that’s exactly how it’ll go down.
When Teagan and Kay bump into one another the first night, sparks fly. Their connection is intense—as is their shared enemy. If they’re spotted, the safe space of the con will be shattered, and all their secrets will follow them home. The risks are great… but could the reward of embracing their true selves be worth it?
I received a digital advance copy of this book from the publisher, Wednesday Books, in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinions and my review.
The One True Me and You, by Remi K. England is a young adult contemporary romance that follows two teenagers, Kaylee and Teagan. Teagan is Miss Virginia, a pageant queen and is at a national pageant. Teagan, who is hoping to win the 25,000 dollar prize to use for college, is also a lesbian. But, she’s closeted and is planning to keep that a secret out of the fear that being out would ruin her chances of winning. Kay is a fanfic writer and has lots of plans for their weekend at GreatCon, a fandom convention. And what neither Kay or Teagan knew is that the pageant and the convention are being held at the very same hotel. Kay and Teagan meet at a convention party that Teagan sneaks into, and their story goes on from there.
The pacing in the book was done absolutely marvelously. There wasn’t a single boring page, and overall the plot had a really nice flow. The dual narration was also done very well. I love books with multiple perspectives, and I think in The One True Me and You, having both Kay and Teagan’s perspectives was just what the story needed. There were enough differences in the style of Kay’s chapters compared to Teagan’s, so it was pretty easy to differentiate between them. Both characters also have unique and vivid personalities, so reading the novel really felt like bouncing back and forth in both of their minds.
I also felt that there was a good mixture of description and dialogue throughout the book. There was just enough description to really bring the characters and settings to life, but not so much that it slowed the plot. The witty and engaging conversations between characters were done very well, and it was very fun to read.
Remi K. England also did a fantastic job with writing the characters. Kay and Teagan, the main characters, were done very well, and had so much incredible depth. They had such good chemistry, which was shown through England’s excellent writing.
The side characters in The One True Me and You were also written very well. There are Jess, Teagan’s pageant friend, Ami, Kay’s friend from school and Cakes and Lady, two of Kay’s best online friends who they get to meet at the convention. Jess and Teagan have a really unique friendship, and it was one that I loved reading about. They only really ever see each other at pageants because they live in different states, but they get to be roommates and spent all of their time together.
The weekend at the convention is the first time that Kay gets to meet their online friends Cakes and Lady, who all met through various parts of the fandom. It meant so much to Kay, which was really neat to see.
Madison aka Miss North Carolina was another side character who I thought was done pretty well. She is as close as you can get to a villain in the novel, and was constantly causing chaos and drama. She is Teagan’s worst pageant nightmare, and even goes to Kay’s school. I did wish that Madison could have had a bit more character development throughout the book. Her just being cruel to be, well, cruel, seemed a little shallow, and I think that her character had a bit more potential. I do think that the way she connected Kay and Teagan’s worlds was done well though.
In The One True Me and You, Remi K. England does a marvelous job of showing how powerful and life changing being able to find communities where you can be yourself is. Kay is able to really explore their identity as a nonbinary bisexual person through meeting other queer people in the fandom, which is especially important since they live in a much more conservative town where they don’t have such a welcoming community.
And, while Teagan doesn’t feel comfortable being out and being completely herself in the pageant community, the pageants are still empowering for her. She talks to Kay through the book about how it can be so amazing for her, and also so harmful. The pageants boost her confidence, and give her a place where she can make a difference in her community.
Remi K. England grew up on the Space Coast of Florida watching shuttle launches from the backyard. These days, they call rural Virginia home, where there are many more cows but a tragic lack of rockets. In between marathon writing sessions, Remi can be found drowning in fandom, rolling critical hits at the gaming table, digging in the garden, or feeding their video game addiction. They probably love Star Wars more than you do.
Remi is the author of THE DISASTERS (2018), SPELLHACKER (2020), THE ONE TRUE ME & YOU (2022) and other forthcoming novels. Follow them at www.mkengland.com.
The One True Me and You is a beautiful and emotional young adult contemporary with vividly unique characters, an exciting and engaging plot, and lots of witty dialogue. Anyone looking for a YA romance with lots of great LGBTQ+ representation and a really great story should check this one out!