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Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry
Cover of Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry
Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry
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Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry by debut author Joya Goffney is a story of an overly enthusiastic list maker who is blackmailed into completing a to-do list of all her worst fears. It's a heartfelt,...
Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry by debut author Joya Goffney is a story of an overly enthusiastic list maker who is blackmailed into completing a to-do list of all her worst fears. It's a heartfelt,...
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Description-

  • Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry by debut author Joya Goffney is a story of an overly enthusiastic list maker who is blackmailed into completing a to-do list of all her worst fears. It's a heartfelt, tortured, contemporary YA high school romance. Fans of Jenny Han's To All the Boys I've Loved Before and Kristina Forest's I Wanna Be Where You Are will love the juicy secrets and leap-off-the-page sexual tension.

    "A hilarious and swoonworthy story." —Kristina Forest, author of Now That I've Found You

    "A fun, emotionally rich romance with a sweet, imperfect character who will win your heart." —Liara Tamani, author of All the Things We Never Knew

    Quinn keeps lists of everything—from the days she's ugly cried, to "Things That I Would Never Admit Out Loud" and all the boys she'd like to kiss. Her lists keep her sane. By writing her fears on paper, she never has to face them in real life. That is, until her journal goes missing . . .

    Then an anonymous account posts one of her lists on Instagram for the whole school to see and blackmails her into facing seven of her greatest fears, or else her entire journal will go public. Quinn doesn't know who to trust. Desperate, she teams up with Carter Bennett—the last known person to have her journal—in a race against time to track down the blackmailer.

    Together, they journey through everything Quinn's been too afraid to face, and along the way, Quinn finds the courage to be honest, to live in the moment, and to fall in love.

    A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

    Epic Reads Recommended Pick at Target

    A Kirkus Children's Best Book of 2021

About the Author-

  • Joya Goffney grew up in New Waverly, a small town in East Texas. In high school, she challenged herself with to-do lists full of risk-taking items like "hug a random boy" and "eat a cricket," which inspired her debut novel, Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry. With a passion for Black social psychology, she moved out of the countryside to attend the University of Texas in Austin, where she still resides.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    March 15, 2021
    After her journal goes missing, a high school senior is blackmailed into completing her most sensitive to-do list. By all appearances Quinn has everything--her family is rich, she is well liked at her private school, and next fall she's headed to Columbia, her parents' alma mater. But it's an act: Quinn uses her journal as a place to alleviate some of the pressure around her secrets and fears so she doesn't have to directly confront them. The biggest among them are that she was in fact rejected by Columbia and has been lying about it and that being one of only five Black students at a mostly White school is really hard. When Carter, a Black classmate she crushes on, mistakenly takes her journal and then loses it, the person who finds it starts anonymously threatening her. If Quinn doesn't complete her "To Do Before I Graduate" list, the mystery person promises to reveal her secrets on social media. Because Carter lost the journal, he volunteers to help her discover the culprit. The character development is excellent; even Quinn's parents get rich storylines. Goffney's explorations of race and class are also well executed. At its heart, this is a story about finding the courage to be honest and take risks and the freedom that follows from embracing authenticity. A perfect mix of humor and romance--and a source of inspiration for being brave. (Fiction. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    March 15, 2021
    Grades 9-12 *Starred Review* High-school senior Quinn has secrets that she has never told another person. Instead, she jots them all down in a red spiral notebook, never to see the light of day. This spiral notebook is full of lists related to secrets, crushes, and dreams from her childhood until now. It isn't until an accidental notebook switch that Quinn finds herself at the mercy of a blackmailer who threatens to reveal all of her secrets to the high school. Quinn is a Black teen girl in a predominately white Texas neighborhood and school, who experiences microaggressions daily and is unsure how to navigate them. Not only that, but her parents' relationship seems to be falling apart, and her grandmother's dementia is slowly stealing away her memories. In this transformative year, Quinn doesn't expect to make waves, but a blackmailer revealing her deepest secrets forces her into the spotlight. With the help of some of her classmates, Quinn unpacks what it means to be Black and creates lasting relationships that help her flourish. Goffney's important debut novel navigates the messy feelings Black teens may experience in a supposedly post-racial world where their challenges often do not mirror the challenges their parents faced. This authentic look at the teen years will undoubtedly delight readers.

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Booklist, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    April 1, 2021

    Gr 8 Up-Quinn makes a list for everything in her spiral notebook: It keeps her grounded. But when her notebook goes missing and an Instagram account posts one of her lists, an anonymous blackmailer informs Quinn she needs to complete her list of seven fears or else the entire notebook goes public. She knows Carter is the last person who had her notebook, though he swears he's not the blackmailer. To prove it, he teams up with Quinn to complete the list, hunt down the real culprit, and show Quinn how to let go. Goffney's debut novel hits all the right points as a dynamic modern romance full of heartache and courage. Quinn's experience as a Black teen attending a predominantly white private school accurately emphasizes the racial prejudice that exists today. Even as Quinn faces horrible situations (like her white friends using a racial slur), Olivia and Auden are characters who show the importance of respect, true friendship, and allyship. Throughout the novel, Quinn struggles with her emotions, using her lists as a crutch. As she faces her seven fears, she discovers that a person shouldn't box themselves into a set of ideals; and always leave room for growth and forgiveness. Quinn and Carter are Black. Olivia is biracial and Auden is white. VERDICT For fans of Ben Philippe's Charming as a Verb or Nicola Yoon's The Sun Is Also a Star, Quinn's story is for readers seeking more than just a simple romance.-Emily Walker, Lisle Lib. Dist., IL

    Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

    "At its heart, this is a story about finding the courage to be honest and take risks and the freedom that follows from embracing authenticity. A perfect mix of humor and romance—and a source of inspiration for being brave." — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

    "With the help of some of her classmates, Quinn unpacks what it means to be Black and creates lasting relationships that help her flourish... This authentic look at the teen years will undoubtedly delight readers." — Booklist (starred review)

    "Filled with compelling conversations about race, friendship, honesty and the importance of authenticity, this book is a wonder, and is perfect for readers of all ages." — Today Show

    "A fun, emotionally rich romance. Alongside the thrills and messiness of young love, Joya Goffney explores themes of bravery, friendship, and race. In Quinn, she creates a sweet, imperfect character who will win your heart." — Liara Tamani, author of All the Things We Never Knew

    "Joya Goffney paints a hilarious and swoon worthy story about friendship, family, overcoming your fears and falling in love. The chemistry between Quinn and Carter is electric, and this debut left me completely charmed." — Kristina Forest, author of Now That I've Found You

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