The 99 Boyfriends of Micah Summers
From the back of the book:
Micah Summers runs a popular Instagram full of drawings of his numerous imaginary boyfriends (ninety-nine so far)—though he’s never had a real boyfriend before. But when a meet-cute with Boy 100 goes wrong, Micah embarks on a Prince Charming-like quest throughout Chicago to find true love—for real this time.Will Boy 100 be the One?Micah is rich, dreamy, and charming. As the “Prince of Chicago,”—the son of local celebrity sports radio host known as the King of Chicago—he has everything going for him. Unfortunately, he’s also the prince of imaginary meet-cutes, since he’s too nervous to actually ask boys out.Instead, Micah draws each crush to share on Instagram with a post about their imaginary dates. Ninety-nine “boyfriends” later, his account is hugely popular, and everyone is eagerly awaiting Boy 100. So is Micah. He’s determined that Boy 100 will be different. This time, Micah will sweep the boy off his feet, for real!So when Micah flirts with a hot boy on the L who’s wearing a vegan leather jacket and lugging a ton of library books, he is sure this is Boy 100. But right before he can make his move and ask for the boy’s number, the guy rushes off the train, leaving behind his pumpkin-embroidered jacket. The jacket holds clues to the boy’s identity, so Micah and his friends set off on a quest to return it. Along the way, Micah will discover that the best relationships aren’t fairy tales. In fact, the perfect fit—and true love—might be closer than he thinks.
- Social media plays a large part in things
- The main character, Micah, is in love with the idea of being in love
- Micah is going to fall in love with someone other than the boy with the vegan jacket, and it’s going to be a close friend.
The last few trips to Barnes and Noble I have picked up and sat down The 99 Boyfriends of Micah Summers. Couldn’t decide if I really wanted to read it. During the 50% off all hardbacks sale of BN right after Christmas, I bought it. It is not a bad book. It is also not a very deep book, but that’s okay. My Covid-19 rattled brain couldn’t handle anything deeper at the moment. It is written well enough, is enjoyable enough light reading. The images in the book that serve as the Micah’s Instagram sketches are a nice touch. It is a solid 4 star book.
But I only gave it 3.5 stars.
I took away .5 star because it was too predictable. I knew who Micah was going to end up with on page 11. Even though it’s one of those “Oh hey, I thought I loved this person but I really love my best friend (or in this case, best friend-in-law)” type books, page 11 is still a bit too soon reveal who that person is going to be. It relies a bit to much on troupes and formula writing. However, the curiosity of how the characters end up together kept me reading. It is not the destination but the journey, and all that.
The book is described as a rom-com. I don’t know if I could call it a rom-com. Lighthearted, yes, but there wasn’t anything I would describe as funny, per se. I feel like a lot of the things, such as the phrase ‘bathroom twink’, that were meant to be funny, are more inside jokes between the author and someone close to him, than actual comedy. That was seriously one of those moments that felt like a story being relayed that you had to be there when it actually happened in order to appreciate it properly, if that makes any sense. After reading the acknowledgements, it really feels as if Adam Sass pulled a bit to much from his own life. This is fine and all, a lot of authors do this. Just some things do not translate to paper well, or this was not the right place for those antidotes to be put in.
Things I love about this book:
- It normalizes gay relationships
- The diversity. It is normalized as well and being black or brown or gay never becomes someone’s whole personality.
- The downsides of being famous and being internet famous. Micah was already famous for having a sports star father, then he became internet famous in his own right through his Instagram account. Being part of a famous family has it downsides, but it also has a lot of perks. Being internet famous, on the other hand, brought a different group of problems to things. As a society we need to talk more about the toxic side of social media.
- The modeling of what a healthy relationship looks like next to one that is somewhat problematic. Grant isn’t necessarily a bad person, but he has baggage and that translates into not always being a good boyfriend.
Things I didn’t like about this book:
- The class disparity between Elliot and Micah. It’s something Micah isn’t always sensitive too. Micah means well, but he doesn’t get that not everyone is comfortable with him throwing around his parents money. And why does a 17 year old get to throw money around like confetti without restriction?
- Micah’s parents are supportive to the point that it feels like they are overdoing it. Supportive progressive parents are great but this is the second book (the first being Openly Straight) where the parents seem over the top about being supportive and progressive, like they are trying too hard.
- When Micah breaks curfew and later stays at his boyfriends without telling his parents where he is, there are no repercussions. It comes across as the “spoilt rich kid who can do no wrong” stereotype. Having said that, the book relies a lot on fairy tales and this very well could be a modern day fairy tale element.
I feel like I am nitpicking this book to death but I’m sick and that’s what I do when sick. I am a bad patient that is not happy with anything. This time around the bad patient has to isolate with the dead spider on the floor as company. The 99 Boyfriends of Micah Summers is well written. All of the main characters have their flaws, just as all people do. That is what makes characters believable. Honestly, this sort of light read is the kind of thing I read when sick or dealing with insomnia because my brain can’t handle anything else. I just wish it wasn’t so predictable and didn’t rely so heavily on troupes.