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Some Girls Do
Cover of Some Girls Do
Some Girls Do
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In this YA contemporary queer romance from the author of Hot Dog Girl, an openly gay track star falls for a closeted, bisexual teen beauty queen with a penchant for fixing up old cars.“Earnest,...
In this YA contemporary queer romance from the author of Hot Dog Girl, an openly gay track star falls for a closeted, bisexual teen beauty queen with a penchant for fixing up old cars.“Earnest,...
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  • In this YA contemporary queer romance from the author of Hot Dog Girl, an openly gay track star falls for a closeted, bisexual teen beauty queen with a penchant for fixing up old cars.
    “Earnest, wistful, romantic, and real.” —Casey McQuiston, New York Times bestselling author of Red, White & Royal Blue

    Morgan, an elite track athlete, is forced to transfer high schools late in her senior year after it turns out being queer is against her private Catholic school's code of conduct. There, she meets Ruby, who has two hobbies: tinkering with her baby blue 1970 Ford Torino and competing in local beauty pageants, the latter to live out the dreams of her overbearing mother. The two are drawn to each other and can't deny their growing feelings. But while Morgan—out and proud, and determined to have a fresh start—doesn't want to have to keep their budding relationship a secret, Ruby isn't ready to come out yet. With each girl on a different path toward living her truth, can they go the distance together?
     
    “Beautiful, necessary, and completely irresistible.” —Becky Albertalli, New York Times bestselling author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Excerpts-

  • From the book

    1

    Ruby

    There’s an art to the extraction. First, I take Tyler’s arm—heavy across my stomach—and slide my fingers beneath. I lift it slightly and move centimeter by centimeter to the right side of the bed. And when I’m mostly free, I grab one of his pillows—warmed by my own overthinking head—and slip it under his arm. If I’m lucky, he’ll snuffle softly in the moonlight streaming into his messy bedroom, hug the pillow, and stay sleeping. If I’m unlucky, he’ll wake up and ask me where I’m going: Ruby, just stay. Ruby, please. Ruby, it won’t kill you to cuddle. I don’t have the energy for that.

    Tyler’s messy brown hair falls into his face as he smiles in his sleep and hugs my pillow replacement a little tighter. I got lucky tonight—in every sense of the word. I grab my boots, leftovers from one of the ten million Western-themed pageants I’ve smiled my way through over the years, and creep out the front door barefoot, careful not to let the screen door slam and wake his parents.

    The motion-sensor light clicks on as I shove my feet into my boots and make a beeline for my car, my soul, my lifeline: my baby-blue 1970 Ford Torino. Yes, it’s old as hell, but it’s the one thing in this world that’s truly mine. I bought it, rusted and rotten, off my great-aunt Maeve’s estate for three hundred bucks. I painstakingly put it back together, scavenging pieces from junkyards and flea markets. I restored it to its current state of splendor. Me. I did that.

    Okay, so maybe I had a little help from Billy Jackson, the town’s least-crooked mechanic, but still.

    I climb inside and shift it into neutral, taking off the emergency brake and letting the car coast backward down Tyler’s long hill of a driveway and into the street, where I finally flick the ignition. It rumbles to life, the sound closer to a growl than a purr. I resist the urge to rev the engine—god, I love that sound—and point my car toward home, feeling loose and boneless, relaxed and happy, content in the way one only can during that tiny glint of freedom between chores and obligations.

    Not that Tyler is an obligation—or a chore, for that matter. He’s nice enough, our time together fun and consensual. In another universe, we’d probably be dating. But we live in this one, and in this universe, I love exactly two things: sleep and my car.

    Tyler is a great stress reliever, an itch to scratch, a good time had by all. Nothing else. We have an arrangement, a friends-with-benefits sort of thing. No strings. If he called me tomorrow and said he wanted to ask a girl out, I’d say Go for it as long as it isn’t me—and I’d mean it. I hope he’d say the same. Which is why I’m driving home from his house two hours after getting a text that simply said: big game tomorrow, you around?

    Be still my heart.

    But then, a couple weeks ago, I texted him: pageant in the AM, come distract me? And he was crawling through my window within minutes.

    See, it’s not an all-the-time thing; it’s an as-needed thing. Some people get high; Tyler and I get twenty minutes of consensual, safe sex—always use a condom, people—and a subsequent awkward exchange about how my leaving right after makes him feel weird. Thus, the sneaking out once he falls asleep: the ideal compromise, at least on my end.

    I pull into the dirt-patch driveway in front of my trailer. It might not seem like much to some, but it’s ours and it’s home. Just...

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    April 1, 2021
    A reluctant pageant contestant falls for a newly out track star. Ruby Thompson loves only two things--sleep and her car--but she relies on hookups with lacrosse star Tyler and working at her ex-stepfather Billy's garage to keep her sane between the pageants her mother insists will be their ticket out of the trailer park. When new girl Morgan Matthews runs in front of Ruby's car, leading to a near miss, they get off on the wrong footing--although Morgan is intrigued by how cute she is. Morgan joins Pride Club and navigates her lesbian identity after being forced out of her Catholic school due to her sexuality. Her Division I college scholarship could be at risk depending on the results of her parents' discrimination lawsuit against St. Mary's. Morgan's annoyance with Ruby's attitude soon becomes something more, despite warnings from her track teammates about Ruby's reputation. The girls are from two different worlds--Morgan's family is loving and supportive while Ruby's mother fears her daughter may not be straight--and with so much to figure out on both sides, can they truly make it work? Dugan gives each protagonist a distinct voice and compelling point of view, and readers will sympathize with their challenges as they find their ways to love. Ruby and Morgan are White; secondary characters are people of color, and there is pansexual and trans visibility. A complex and poignant queer romance. (Romance. 13-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Publisher's Weekly

    April 5, 2021
    Morgan, “marginally disgraced track star of the female persuasion,” is starting at a new school because queerness is “against the code of conduct” at her old one. On her first day, Ruby—a lifer beauty pageant contestant whom her classmates see as “trashy” because she lives in a trailer—almost runs Morgan down in the school parking lot, and their attraction is instantaneous. Ruby has had feelings for girls before, but she doesn’t do relationships, and her homophobic beauty queen mother is totally invested in her daughter being a pageant winner, a dream that Ruby no longer shares. Morgan, meanwhile, is no longer interested in being in the closet. Dugan (Verona Comics) gives the high school seniors, both white, solid lines as well as obstacles that are tied to and separate from their feelings for each other. Ruby is the slightly more interesting character, as she tries to balance competing interests (she’s serious about fixing up cars) and navigate what she owes her mother, but the teens’ collisions as they try to determine whether they can turn their attraction into something more solid make for an enjoyable romantic tale. Ages 12–up.

  • Booklist

    May 15, 2021
    Grades 7-10 Elite white track star Morgan is used to fighting for her wins. When she's kicked out of her Catholic high school her senior year for violating the code of conduct just by being an out lesbian, well then that's just another battle to win. But when she starts at her new school, she runs--literally--into Ruby, also white, and with a reputation for trouble. Ruby, whose true love is fixing cars, has been competing in beauty pageants most of her life to please her mother, a former beauty queen who lost her own shot at stardom when Ruby was born. Bisexual but deeply in the closet, Ruby finds herself drawn to Morgan even as she fears what their connection means. And as Morgan finds herself embraced by a group of LGBTQ+ students, the more she wants to shout who she is--and who she loves--out loud. Dugan (Verona Comics, 2020) returns with a nuanced sapphic romance that guides its heroines as they struggle with their identities and discover their voices. An understated yet powerful addition to the canon.

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Booklist, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    June 1, 2021

    Gr 9 Up-Kicked out of Catholic school after coming out as gay, Morgan lands at a new school hoping to finish out her senior year on the track team in order to secure a spot at a Division I college. This is not an easy task, as her old school has placed several hurdles in her way. Angry about this situation, Morgan is intent on being a force for change for LGBTQIA+ student athletes who face discrimination by their schools. Enter Ruby Thompson, local teen beauty pageant queen and budding auto mechanic. When Morgan and Ruby meet, the attraction is instant but the barriers between them steep. As they grow closer, their relationship is tested by Morgan's desire to be a public couple and Ruby's need to keep her sexuality a secret. Despite a few plot contrivances, this novel succeeds in its portrayal of serious issues coupled with the giddy adrenaline rush of first love. Told in alternating first-person narratives between Morgan and Ruby, Dugan nails the young adult voice. Morgan and Ruby are fully realized and age-appropriately flawed. As they grapple with their feelings and say hurtful things to one another, they also learn from each other and mature along the way. Morgan is cued as white; Ruby is white; there is some diversity in the secondary characters; many characters are LGBTQIA+. VERDICT Perfect for teen readers struggling with their identity, or any teen in search of a satisfying, realistic coming-of-age romance.-Melissa Kazan, Horace Mann Sch., NY

    Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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