May 30th, 2024
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Discover May's Best New Reads: Stories to Ignite Your Spring Days.

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The Breakup Lists

The Breakup Lists, April 2024
by Adib Khorram

Dial Books
336 pages
ISBN: 0593616391
EAN: 9780593616390
Kindle: B0C9ZHY2JX
Hardcover / e-Book / audiobook
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"The Breakup Lists offers a distinctive and enjoyable tone to the YA genre"

Fresh Fiction Review

The Breakup Lists
Adib Khorram

Reviewed by Kishor Rao
Posted April 15, 2024

Romance LGBTQ | Romance Comedy

As a long-time admirer of Adib Khorram's writing, I was naturally drawn to his latest work, 'The Breakup Lists.' Khorram's ability to create relatable and empathetic teenage narratives is once again on display, but this time with a unique twist. While the novel doesn't attempt to revolutionize the YA genre or break free from its familiar tropes, it offers a distinctive and enjoyable tone that captivated me—a rare feat in the world of YA literature.

The heart of the story beats with Jackson, a tech-savvy student in the theatre department who, after a disastrous freshman audition, retreats from the spotlight. He discovers solace in creating 'breakup lists' to aid his sister in coping with heartbreak, transforming his talent for narrative control into a therapeutic outlet. As the lists, typically filled with biting cons, begin to extend beyond family and friends, they reveal Jackson's unfiltered perspectives on those around him, marking a significant step in his character development.

Enter Liam, the charismatic senior swim captain with a physique that turns heads, including Jackson's and his sister Jasmine's. As Jackson and Liam navigate their newfound connection, questions arise about Liam's sexuality and whether Jackson's feelings will lead to another name on his infamous breakup lists.

From the outset, "The Breakup Lists" captivated me with humor, often deriving laughs from Jackson's endearing quirks. Khorram skillfully weaves heavier themes into the narrative, providing insight into the characters' motivations and emotional complexities.

While the story remains engaging, one plot twist reminiscent of a teen movie cliché (Mean Girls) strains believability. Despite this, the novel's overall charm and witty storytelling overshadow any minor flaws, making it a delightful read.

I recommend "The Breakup Lists" for those seeking a humorous and lighthearted romance with relatable characters and witty dialogue. It effortlessly balances humor with depth, and I thoroughly enjoyed the journey alongside Jackson and his unconventional methods of coping with life and love.

In conclusion, "The Breakup Lists" is a delightful addition to Adib Khorram's work, offering a refreshing take on familiar themes within the YA genre. If you're in the mood for a funny, fluffy read that still manages to delve into the complexities of relationships, this book is well worth picking up.

Learn more about The Breakup Lists


Love is more complicated than “boy meets boy” in bestselling author Adib Khorram’s sharply funny new romantic comedy, set in the sordid world of high school theater

Jackson Ghasnavi is a lot of things—a techie, a smoothie afficionado, a totally not obsessive list-maker—but one thing he’s not is a romantic. And why would he be? He’s already had a front row seat to his parents’ divorce and picked up the pieces of his sister Jasmine’s broken heart one too many times.

No, Jackson is perfectly happy living life behind the scenes—he is a stage manager, after all—and keeping his romantic exploits limited to the breakup lists he makes for Jasmine, which chronicle every flaw (real or imagined) of her various and sundry exes.

Enter Liam: the senior swim captain turned leading man that neither of the Ghasnavi siblings stop thinking about. Not that Jackson has a crush, of course. Jasmine is already setting her sights on him and he’s probably—no, definitely—straight anyway.

So why does the idea of eventually writing a breakup list for him feel so impossible?

What do you think about this review?


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