Rating: 4 out of 5.

I absolutely loved this book and could not put it down. As a former high school theater nerd myself, I could totally relate to Bridget’s angst, as well as the personalities and quirks of her friends. Bridget’s growth in the story was incredible and I liked how the author was able to subtly show these changes throughout the book, without hitting us over the head with it. The realization at the end of the book was almost a surprise, even though you had been along for the ride with Bridget from the start.

Bridget is extremely confident at the beginning of the book and her drive to achieve her goals is commendable. However, we quickly learn that her focus is to the exclusion of everything else, making her extremely self-centered. This is not a conscious decision on her part, it’s just that she works so hard to perfect her craft that she’s oblivious to anyone else. When obstacles are put in her path she is forced to adapt, and thus, learns to stop and consider those around her. Her friendships with Liza and Max were wonderful to see develop, and I especially loved her relationship with Hans, the elderly antique store owner. Bridget finds solace there. She can let down her guard and relax for a change. It’s the safe space that we all need to find that gives us a harbor during the storm.

This is a wonderful book that is a quick, fun read. I highly recommend you check it out.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley and HarperCollins Children’s Books, HarperTeen. All opinions are my own.

Here is the Goodreads Blurb:

“A bright and fun fat-positive coming-of-age novel about self-discovery, humility, friendship, love, and how to express yourself when what has always defined you is no longer an option, by debut author Allison L. Bitz. Perfect for fans of Crystal Maldonado, Emma Lord, and Becky Albertalli.

Bridget Bloom’s out-of-this-world voice is the perfect fit for center stage. When Bridget’s admitted to Richard James Academy, a college prep boarding school with a prestigious music program—where heartthrob Duke Ericson attends—all her dreams are on track to come true: leave the hometown where she’s never belonged, fall in love, and launch her Broadway career.

But upon arriving at the academy, she learns that due to her low music theory scores, she’s not eligible to perform or earn the sponsorship she needs to afford the tuition. Worst of all, Dean of Students Octavia Lawless, the one person with the power to reverse the decision, challenges her to work on her humility . . . by not singing at all.

Without her voice, Bridget will have to get out of her comfort zone and find a new way to shine. Good thing she is unstoppable!”