Parents' Guide to

You Have a Match

By Mandie Caroll, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Fun, heartfelt summer camp tale shows love in many forms.

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A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

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Kids say (3 ):

This novel charms with the snarky wit of teen culture and the central concerns of growing up in the information age. Premised on the phenomenon of DNA services turning up hidden relatives and family secrets, You Have a Match is a sweet coming-of-age tale. It's populated with well-developed and relatable characters, like quirky, resilient Abby, and Leo, the kind of nonstereotypical boy character teen media needs. It's got a lush, beautifully constructed Pacific Northwest setting and a swoon-worthy romance. Its strengths allow readers to forgive the implausible setup of finding a secret sister who lives nearby and ending up at summer camp with her and your best friend/crush.

Unfortunately, the book centers the adoption of Savvy, who is White, and downplays Leo's adoption story. Adopted from the Philippines by White parents, Leo longs to connect with his birth family and culture, but we learn little more than that. Lord doesn't explore his transracial adoption experience with the depth it deserves, and though Leo eventually connects meaningfully with his Filipino identity, it's still a cringeworthy dynamic, given the overall focus on the fallout of Savvy's adoption. It's certainly a topic to discuss with readers. Aside from this, the book is a fast-paced, fun read with lots of teen appeal.

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