3, by Hannah Moskowitz
Release Date: October 31, 2016
You just have to be a brave and certain kind of person, and I don’t think that I am. I’m sarcastic and loyal and a little shy. I’m quietly and slightly Catholic. I’m a daughter trying to learn how to be a sister. I’m a virgin. I’m a butterflier.
I’ve never been in love.
Taylor Cipriano had everything figured out, back when she lived with her single mother in Miami. Now, she’s moved upstate for her junior year to live with her mom’s boyfriend and her soon-to-be-stepsister and is trying to figure out who she is out of the shadow of her best friend. When she meets Theo—quirky, cute, sensitive Theo—he seems like a great match…except he has a girlfriend. Josey, icy and oh-so-intimidating.
But Theo and Josey aren’t like anyone Taylor’s met before; Josey grew up in a polyamorous family, and the two of them have a history of letting a third person in to their relationship. It’s nothing Taylor’s ever considered before…but she really likes Theo.
Her feelings for Josey, though?
That’s where it really gets complicated.
3 unwraps who we love and how we love, in numbers as odd as we are.
Have you seen what I did with the rating? (4 stars for the story and 1 for the editing/proofing.) I need to get this off my chest first, because I am seriously pissed off and frustrated. This book has a really good story, one that is rarely told (look at them tags), but the editing and proofing is so abysmal that I cannot recommend this book to anyone, which pains me because it’s a fucking shame. Well, I’m not saying you shouldn’t read it, especially if you want to read about teenagers being in a polyamorous relationship, but be prepared. There are wrong words, missing words, mixed up pronouns, so you have to figure out who’s doing or saying what, and just to give you two examples, look at this:
[…] the reception room is isn’t going to be ready for a half-hour after we planned […]
[…] I don’tkno2 any stories […]
Well, is it or is it not? Probably isn’t because that makes more sense, but I don’t want to need to figure this out. Reading this is confusing at the least. And I don’t even want to know what happened in the second example. If I had realised this in the sample (which is actually written way better), I wouldn’t have bought the book, but, as often the case, this only gets worse later on.
I thought about quitting (heh, I do not finish books all the time and don’t feel the need to continue books that annoy me) but I was too invested in the story and characters to go through with it. Because not only is this book really funny and has a wonderful narration through the protagonist Taylor, but the topic of polyamory is very well handled and interesting and just great.
This book is about growing up and finding your place (at least for the moment) and about all kinds of facets of love and how you can love several people at the same time and how love and relationships are different and not more or less than the other.
I really like that this book doesn’t show us a triad in which everyone loves everyone equally and everything is shared and together (nothing bad with that, don’t get me wrong), but that the focus is on Taylor’s and Theo’s relationship with each other, and Taylor’s and Josey’s, and Theo’s and Josey’s. They all have their separate thing going on but are, of course, also connected and together—how could it not?
Josey’s parents are also polyamorous and it is great to see an older role model, so to say. There are several secondary characters who are well flashed out and give depth to the story. I also like the pacing and the overall emphasis of growing up and learning how to love and live. It’s less about the falling in love and romance (although there is lots of kissing 🙂 ). I have to say, though, that the getting together was too rushed.
The plot device for the final conflict that forces the three to come out wasn’t to my liking, and I feel that the SPOILER: abortion was taken far too lightly. Like, I’m not judging them or anyone but I don’t like how this, to me, difficult and complicated topic was handled.
Okay, let me summarise, I really like the main content of the story (the characters and the polyamorous relationship) and I think this is well worth reading, but because of the bad bad bad proofing I cannot recommend the book, which sucks.
Hannah Moskowitz is a tank top-collecting, tv-obsessing, Rocky Horror-performing woman of mystery. She’s a ’90s kid, a mezzo-soprano, and a professional Sims-breeder. If she’s not writing she’s probably eating. Her cats are better than your cats. She’d choose a good haircut over a good wardrobe any day. And no matter where she’s living, she’s a clear-eyed, full-hearted Maryland girl with Old Bay for blood.