Excuse Me While I Ugly Cry

(Trade paper)
Out of stock - dispatches within 5-7 business days

Reviewed by – Millie M

Quinn Jackson is a High School Senior with lots to hide. She didn’t get into the college that her parents want, she helped with a campaign against one of her peers, she refuses to visit her deteriorating grandmother; all of these things are locked up safe in her journal. When she loses it, she doesn’t know what to do. All of the thoughts that she would have crammed into lists and entries spill out of her. She is blackmailed by the person who has her journal. Quinn is forced to complete the tasks on her “To Do Before I Graduate” list. Through these challenges, she realises that her journal wasn’t so good after all; it made her bottle up all of her feelings.

This was a feel-good, relaxing read. I loved the storyline because I think many can relate to it. The display of friendship, love and growth was beautiful. I really enjoyed the insight into and discussion about Black culture. The characters and plot were incredibly realistic and entertaining but I just couldn’t get behind the style of writing.

I would recommend this to those just starting to branch into YA fiction (younger kids).

I rate it ⅖ stars


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