On the Subject of Unmentionable Things – 5 Star Review

“Phoebe Townsend is a rule follower . . . or so everyone thinks. She’s an A student who writes for her small-town school newspaper. But what no one knows is that Phoebe is also Pom—the anonymous teen who’s rewriting sex education on her blog and social media.”

Official blurb for on the subject of unmentionable things

If you have been around for a while, then you already know that I fell in love with the writing style of Julia Walton when I read & blogged about her debut novel, Words on Bathroom Walls. Her books always capture the essence of teen spirit, and the characters consistently surprise me in the best of ways. On the Subject of Unmentionable Things is her latest release which hit bookstores fall of 2022. I obviously preordered this gorgeous book but decided the best way to enjoy a new story is with some friends. 

In the Book Keepers Community, we have a postal book club called #TravelingBookKeepers where groups of members take turns selecting a book, reading it, marking it up with notes, and then mailing it to one another in a circular fashion until a group completes the book and sends it back to the original owner. It’s one of my favorite ways to read books with friends, and I cherish all my copies as I flip through and read everyone’s notes. This book was my pick from the last round, and it was a blast!  

On the Subject of Unmentionable Things has the perfect amount of romance, humor, relevant political issues, feminism, sex education, and positivity. It features one of the greatest best-friend relationships that I’ve read in a young adult contemporary book and there is something special about seeing a non-toxic female friendship for this age group. I like that while I had an inkling of where the story was headed with the climax, everything didn’t turn out precisely as I expected. Several characters’ arcs truly surprised me, and they each felt like real people. 

Not only do we get to know the protagonist more as she struggles between her anonymous online identity and real-life experiences, but the reader also gets to see portions of the sex-ed blog mentioned in the blurb! Which contained accurate and impartial sex-ed advice that many teens (and adults) can learn from. It’s basically a story and education weaved into one, without feeling like the author had an agenda besides kindness, knowledge, and entertainment. This will be a story I thrust at all my friends, teens, librarians, and you! I promise you will grin and fall in love with the characters as much as I did! Go read it and then come tell me all your thoughts 😊

Reviewed by Coco

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