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Leah on the Offbeat

Leah on the Offbeat

Book - 2018
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With prom and graduation around the corner, senior Leah Burke struggles when her group of friends start fighting.
Publisher: New York, NY : Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2018]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9780062643803
Branch Call Number: YA ALBERTA 2018
Characteristics: 343 pages, 15 pages ; 22 cm
Alternative Title: Leah on the off beat


From Library Staff

Leah’s world is changing fast with the coming of prom and graduation. When her friend group (including her crush, Abby) becomes a bit offbeat, Leah wonders how her senior year will end.

From the critics

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Nov 10, 2020

This book takes place during Leah’s senior year, with prom, graduation, and college drawing closer. Leah is just trying to figure out her life, and she begins to develop feelings for someone. I really loved reading about Leah’s friends again and what they were doing, and the dialogue was hilarious. I also liked Leah’s confidence. However, she’s selfish and rude and doesn’t really do much to change. This wasn’t as good as the first book in the series, but I still enjoyed it! Age: 13+

Aug 11, 2020

After reading Simon vs. Homo Sapiens I really wanted to continue in that world, and I will say I loved the first book more than this book. Leah gives us a fresh perspective in this world and what she is going through. The writing could have been a little cleaner as there was some repetitive places, but on the whole this book is a fun read and I enjoyed it.

Jul 30, 2020

Leah Burke is great at keeping on beat - at least when it comes to drumming. With senior year in high school, smooth sailing proves just a little too difficult. She has always been the outsider of the group, the daughter of a young, single mother in a neighborhood that perhaps isn't as posh as the rest of her peers. While Leah knows who she is, she finds it harder to broadcast that fact to the rest of the world, whether it be her body-image, her artistic talent, or even her sexuality. When her friend group begins to fracture in a way she couldn't have imagined - so close to senior prom and graduation - everything feels just a little offbeat. As one of her friends tries to come to terms with their discovered sexuality, Leah must face feelings she thought she had buried long ago.
I did thoroughly enjoy this book. The style in which the author wrote, using first person and appropriate vocabulary for the age of the character, accurately helped me as a reader get into Leah's head, and it was almost as if I could hear her voice reciting her thoughts to me. It made the story engaging and fun to see the events unfold from the perspective of the high schooler. It's lighthearted tone makes it a good read for those simply looking for a fun summertime book and accurately describes the melancholy feeling that comes with friendships and relations drifting apart and evolving.
However, the language used in this book, as it is being narrated by a senior in high school, tends to utilize quite a bit of vulgar language and also includes underage drinking. Although there are no explicit or implied sexual scenes, the kissing and makeout descriptions tend to be rather thorough, including conversations containing sexual references. Despite these few shortcomings, I believe that this novel serves to effectively educate readers on bisexuality and LGBTQA+ youth culture, specifically the journey of coming out and coming to terms with yourself. It also provides some insight into body-image issues and the drama and emotions around getting into college. It is a great book to read when you are looking for something humorous and easy, and I would certainly read it again.

Apr 06, 2020

I LOVED Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda and I was thrilled to learn that there was a second book exploring Leah's perspective. The book is a good read but it definitely does not have the same magic as Simon. The ending romance didn't quite feel authentic. I might have enjoyed this more if I hadn't just finished the first book.

Jan 02, 2020

I really enjoyed this book. It played with the anxiety of going away to college and leaving everything that you know behind and choosing to do what you want to do. It furthers Simon and Bram’s Story while giving more information on everyone else. I LOVE LEAH.

sjpl_rebekah Aug 26, 2019

I thoroughly enjoyed Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, so I was thrilled when I found out the author was publishing a book highlighting another character introduced in the first of the Creekwood series.

Leah was a character I enjoyed very much in Simon’s book, and I was excited to get to know her better. Leah’s character is self-assured and opinionated, and she loves her appearance, despite the fact that her body type does not adhere to traditional standards of beauty. She is confident in just about every aspect of herself, except her sexuality and her art. Leah is a very talented artist, but she is reluctant to show her deeply personal work to the people in her life. Perhaps she is worried that it will be revealing of the secret she has been harboring from her friends…her bisexuality.

Based on the description above, I should love Leah, but once inside her head, I actually found her to be a bit obnoxious. To make matters worse, many situations in the book made me cringe, because Leah was outright rude or inconsiderate to the people around her. By the end of the book, I was not her biggest fan.

The romance between Leah and another character was also very problematic. Her love interest came off extremely flat and the chemistry just wasn’t there. The story also does not address any blowback that would have undoubtedly occurred if the romance progressed the way it did in the book. It was extremely unrealistic and disappointing when the author jumped over any inevitable falling out and just included a “happy ending” epilogue to gloss it all over.

Despite my disdain for this book, the performer did a great job with her narration. I would give her a higher star rating than the book itself if I could.

Aug 09, 2019

I thoroughly enjoyed Leah on the Offbeat. It was hilarious from beginning to end and a pretty easy read (which I appreciate). It seemed to be a very "unfiltered" account of a bisexual teenager's life and it was nice seeing some LGBTQ+ representation that wasn't either overly sexualized or very stereotypical. It was a shorter read and it seemed (to me at least) that compared to 'Simon and the Homosapien Agenda' it had "less of a plot" - still fun & a great read, but less substantial. 10/10 would recommend to anyone who wants a funny, quick read.

Jul 08, 2019

I read love Simon and it was really nice to go back to the Same characters. The author does a really good job portraying senior year angst and the struggle of thinking you are not good enough.

I like the fact that this author includes LGBT people and characters in this story, it makes it more realistic and true to our modern world.
-Lori, age 13

Jan 11, 2019

I enjoyed this book. It was a great portrayal of the struggles of a bisexual girl trying to navigate love, life and highschool without losing friends or missing opportunities.

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Dec 15, 2020

blue_cat_22969 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

May 05, 2018

yellow_bee_208 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over


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It's obviously not just Simon and Bram. It's couples in general. And it's not about the kissing stuff. It's just - imagine being Simon. Imagine going about your day knowing someone's carrying you in their mind. That has to be the best part of being in love - the feeling of having a home in someone else's brain.


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