Cover Reveal: The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

Good morning everyone! I’ve spoken at length before about how I ordinarily suspend all regular posts and features on Pop! Goes The Reader throughout the Her Story event so as not to distract from it, but there’s an exception to every rule, and today’s post is one that’s extra special and extremely close to my heart.

I first read Becky Albertalli’s Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda in August 2014, and immediately knew I had discovered a book quite unlike any other. I am now lucky enough to call Becky a dear friend, but even were this not the case, I would still feel eminently blessed to be able to use this platform to speak at length about her books, because I believe strongly in the work she does and the stories she tells. Whether exploring issues of sexual orientation or body image, anxiety or insecurities, Becky does so with a unparalleled sensitivity and thoughtfulness that make each of her novels feel tangible, true, and unerringly real. This is no less true for Becky’s forthcoming April 2017 release, The Upside Of Unrequited. For those of you who do not follow me on Twitter, I recently shared a few of my initial impressions after reading an early draft of this novel, which can be found here. To say that I loved this novel would be an understatement. Molly’s story is one I’m intimately familiar with, because it’s my story, too. You can therefore imagine my surprise and delight when Becky asked whether I would be willing to reveal the cover for The Upside Of Unrequited on Pop! Goes The Reader. It was absolutely an honour to have been able to work with Becky on this post and I couldn’t be more excited to share it with everyone today. This is THE 2017 Book To Watch and I know I’ll be recommending it to everyone and anyone for many months (and years) to come.

Please read on to learn a little more about this truly spectacular sophomore release from Becky Albertalli, including a personal note from the author, an exclusive cover reveal, as well as a one-of-a-kind opportunity to enter to win a signed and personalized ARC of The Upside Of Unrequited!

This book did not come easily.

I know that’s what happens sometimes with second books. For me, it was like writing with the world reading over my shoulder. Every paragraph I drafted came with its own mental one-star review. I was the worst, my writing was the worst, and I was a total fraud who never should have opened a laptop. I was sure this was the worst book anyone had ever written. But it was deeper than that.

The thing about The Upside Of Unrequited is that it’s so me. It’s my heart on my sleeve. It’s me making awkwardly intense eye contact with you while singing. Molly’s experiences aren’t exactly like mine (let’s be honest: she gets more action than I ever got in high school). But I was – am – a fat girl who could never figure out if she was pretty. I was lonely. I was too careful. I burned with secret unrequited crushes that felt both hopeless and thrillingly possible. I wanted to be in love, but love was a thing that happened to other people.

And I never talked about this stuff – not to my family and friends. Certainly not to thousands of strangers and every single person I’ve ever known. Writing this story scared me. I’d never felt so vulnerable over a book before.

But after two years and seven rewrites and so many tears and missed deadlines, the weirdest thing happened: I fell in love with Molly. In fact, The Upside Of Unrequited may actually not be the worst book ever written. I may actually love it as much as I love Simon.

Because Upside is a love letter to the late bloomers and the fat girls and the ones who worry it will never happen. It’s a love letter to teen me. It’s a love letter to the people who don’t get love letters.

And maybe it didn’t come easily, but it got there eventually. Just like me.

About Becky Albertalli

Becky Albertalli is the author of the acclaimed novel Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and – coming soon – The Upside Of Unrequited. She is a clinical psychologist who specializes in working with children and teens. Currently, Becky lives with her family in Atlanta, where she spends her days writing books for teens. You can visit her online at

Author Links: WebsiteTwitterInstagramTumblrGoodreads

Title The Upside of Unrequited
Author Becky Albertalli
Pages N/A
Intended Target Audience Young Adult
Genre Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Romance
To Be Published April 11th, 2017 by Balzer + Bray
Find It On Goodreads

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love – she’s lived through it twenty-six times. She crushes hard and crushes often, but always in secret. Because no matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness – except for the part where she is.

Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. Will is funny and flirtatious and just might be perfect crush material. More than crush material. And if Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a Tolkien superman with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.


As an extra, exciting bonus, Becky has been kind enough to offer one lucky reader the chance to win a signed and personalized ARC of The Upside Of Unrequited! This contest is open internationally to all entrants and the prize will be distributed once advance reader copies become available. Please fill out the Rafflecopter form below to enter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

102 Responses

  1. I’m so excited to see what comes with this book, I can’t wait, seriously. It’s gonna be a wild ride, I’m sure of that.

  2. This cover is so beautiful and I am SO excited to read this one!

    I think if I could tell something to my 17 year old self, I would tell her not to take everything so seriously and to know that one day being “cool” is not all that important. I would also encourage her to be more open for new people, new opportunities, etc.

  3. Wow… That cover? That blurb?? I seriously cannot wait for this book. I’m officially hyped now.

    Thanks for the chance to win an ARC and for giving us a behind-the-scenes experience!

  4. I’d tell my seventeen-year-old self that I’ve learned the people you think you want to be friends with aren’t necessarily the people you should be friends with because it’s no fun wasting your time trying to befriend people who are popular and seem cooler only to realize you have nothing in common with those people and end up feeling out of place.

  5. I’m not 17 yet, but I would remind myself to be careful around guys, not worry about what other people think of me, and keep doing well in school and with reading. 🙂

  6. Hello 17 year old noura,

    I’m sorry for the next couple of years and all the times I wasn’t nice to you. Most of the people you thought will stay in your life didn’t but that’s not a bad thing because the ones you’ll meet in the next few years are going to save you. In more ways than one.
    It’s gonna be so tough and you’ll become very familiar with rock bottom but you’re more stubborn than you think you are.
    There will be so much passion in you that it will take you by surprise.

    I’m trying to be gentle with my heart now for all the times I wasn’t.

    I’ll see you soon.
    Current noura

  7. I would tell my 16 year old self this: “It won’t happen. I’m sorry. ”

    I’m really excited for this book! Can’t wait!

  8. If I could talk to my 17 year old self, I’d tell her to hold on to the things and people she loves. That she has a hard few years ahead of her but she’ll get through them. That sometimes she’ll feel lonely but she’ll never truly be alone. That even though she won’t fall in love with anyone any time soon, she’ll fall in love with books and with stories, and one day she’ll write them too. <3

    I can't freaking wait for UPSIDE! I mean obviously I'm excited about everything Becky writes but holy crap, I think this book will hit me right in the heart. #FatGirlPower
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  9. Can’t wait to read this book, the cover has got me all excited now!

    If I could talk to my 17 year old self I’d say it’s okay you don’t have all the answers, and you don’t need to – take your time and don’t let other people tell you who you are.

  10. Oh, this cover! And the description of Unrequited is just so perfect. I cannot wait to read it.

    If I could tell teenage me one thing it would be that you don’t have to try and make everyone else happy. Find your own happiness and don’t worry what anyone else thinks. Life is so much better that way!

  11. I cannot wait for this book 🙂

    And what I’d tell my 17 year old self: Never give up on love. Eventually you find the right person, it just takes a few wrong people sometimes.

  12. It maybe sound cliche but I will tell my 17 year old self that It’s gonna get better, you will find friends that accept you for what you are and who will support you and be there for you through the discovery of yourself and life 🙂 and it’s okay to be different! There are people out there who exactly like you! You are belong somewhere.

  13. I’d tell my 17-year-old self to stop living by other peoples’ rules and start making my own. Rule #1: Don’t be ashamed to love the things you love and to love them hard.

  14. This book sounds amazing!
    TBH I don’t know what Ibw ok uld say to my 17 year old self. Maybe that I should study and learn the stuff I needed to (but then I may not end up ending where I am right now).

  15. Ahhh I’m so excited for this book! The cover is absolutely gorgeous, and I know it will look stunning beside my copy of Simon. I would tell myself to stick to what I want to do, and not get distracted by other things. I would tell myself to get a dog, too! ;D
    Denise recently posted…100 Book Blogs I LoveMy Profile

  16. I’m not 17 yet but right now I’d tell them to not worry so much, keep going as you have before and enjoy the little things in life

  17. I’m not quite 17 yet, but I’d tell my future self to not worry, enjoy the little things, and to keep watching doctor who no matter what.

  18. I love this cover & love how it compliments the Simon cover as well.
    What I’d tell 17 y/o me: Hey you! Fun fact: everyone else is struggling with something too. You’re not the only one feeling out of place & not good enough. So, maybe maybe maybe, if you can, chill out a little bit!

  19. Dear 17 year old same. I am proud of you for growing so much and rest well knowing you’ll keep evolving. The world does not end after every ended relationship, the people who truly love you and whom you truly love will remain.
    And, I’m sorry it took me so long to say it, but: I love you.

  20. I love the cover!
    I would tell my 17-year-old self that I would make the best friend in college, so just stick it out for a little longer. 🙂

  21. I’m so excited for this book! Simon is one of my favorites, and I’ve been waiting for this book to be announced for a long time.
    If I could tell my seventeen-year-old self one thing, I would tell her that things are not actually as bad as you think, because a lot of people have your back and you can work things out more easily than you think.

  22. I would tell my 17-yo self “If you think you’re fat now, just wait”. FOR REALS. I used to think I was so fat, but now I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been, sigh. It does get worse XD

  23. My god, all these beautiful YA covers. My shelfs are looking fabulous recently.

    If I could tell my seventeen-year-old self something, it would have to be two things since I cannot decide which is more important.

    First, no one cares that you like boys. They just want you to be happy.

    Second, reading will grant you the light you need to steer yourself in the right direction. Read now, never stop.

  24. This cover is beautiful, this intro from Jen is beautiful, and Becky’s intro is beautiful too. *starry eyes* I cannot wait for this book.

    17-year-old me was an all-around mess and wouldn’t believe anything I’d say about the future. I think I’d like to let her know that coloring in our eyebrows does tremendous wonders for our self-esteem.

  25. If I could talk to my 17 year old self, even if that was only two years ago. I would say… just keep writing. No matter what happens just keep writing.

    Thank you Jen for this amazing opportunity!! I discovered Simon & Becky because of you so I’m proud to enter your giveaway! 😀

  26. I forgot to answer the question. I would tell my 17 year old self to slow down and not be in such a hurry. You’re worthy and thugs will come in their own time. I would tell her that respect for herself is more important than popularity and that being true to yourself and being a little weird make you unique.
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  27. I would tell my seventeen year old self that liking boys and girls the same way isn’t weird. You’re not weird. Please try harder on your ALevels.

  28. So freakin excited for this book! Your intro + Becky’s note sound so interesting, and make me want to pick up this book ASAP.

    Considering I haven’t even been 18 for a month yet (whoops!), I don’t know what wisdom I have to impart to my 17 year old self. Maybe just to unwind a bit and enjoy what’s to come. <3

  29. I’d want ot tell teen me that she’s worthy. And every choice made in high school isn’t going to break her life.

    This book sounds so familiar- I already wish I could have read it then.

  30. If I could speak to my seventeen-year-old self I would thank her for not taking everything for granted. That although all her friends are busy having relationships, she is busy with how she will make herself strong, independent and an independent woman in the future; that being a seventeen-year-old is not about pleasing others and making yourself good for other people but otherwise. And thinking first of what is more important to her, HER OWN LIFE AND HER FAMILY.

    Ahhhhh! I am so excited for the release of this book! I’ve read Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and I really really love it and can’t stop rereading it. OMG haha thank you for this giveaway BTW :*

  31. Oh man, if I could go back and talk to my 17 year old self, I’d tell her to choose English as a major from the get go, bust her butt to get an internship, and to be happy because there are some things she’s going to worry about a lot, but everything ends out alright. Oh, and to be better with her finances.

    Also, this book sounds super interesting! I’m really looking forward to reading this.
    Rayna @ Reader Rayna recently posted…Beautiful People: Childhood EditionMy Profile

  32. I would tell my seventeen-year-old self to not care so much about what others think. To stand up for herself and speak up. To work steadily at being more confident. That being fat wasn’t the end of the world. There are actually so many things I wish I could tell my younger self. I can’t wait for this book!

    PS Jen, I didn’t realize you were Canadian! I just saw on your Twitter that you’re in Ontario, and so am I. 🙂

  33. Great cover Becky! Can’t wait for #Upside aka #MollyBook

    I would tell myself to never forget all the hard times you went through in high school and know that even though times can be tough now everything gets better in time and also to keep up your love of learning, music, and literature!

  34. I’m not seventeen yet, so I’d probably ask myself what the future is like. Is the world taken over by VR? What happend to that new season of modern family? Nobody knows (yet).

  35. Oh man I’ll just tell myself not to get caught up in what other people are doing and just be yourself. I wasted so much time on that.

  36. What would I tell my 17 year old self… That’s difficult, seeing as I’m currently 16!
    I’d mostly be curious to hear what my 17 year old self has to to tell me, if I’m being honest. How is university? How are your new friends? Will everything work out? I’d love to hear all that!

    I physically and mentally cannot wait for this book. The cover is beautiful, the premise is beautiful, Becky’s writing (and Becky, let’s be real) is beautiful… I NEED IT! Loved this post, Jen! 😀
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  37. I would have told myself to get a backbone, and do things that made me happy, not what made others happy. Age = perspective

  38. I can’t wait for this book! I feel like I’m going to relate to Molly so much.

    I would tell my 17 year old self: take chances — move to an unexpected place for awhile, date different types of people, date a lot to see who you like and what qualities you want and need in a person, expect better for yourself and don’t settle, be happier, believe in yourself and know that you will fail at times but that failures teach you something, and most of all, work hard and play hard. Love yourself.

    Thanks for the giveaway!!! And congrats on this book journey

  39. I wrote a letter to my YA self last year (as part of a blog tour feature) and this is from part of it:

    “You had some really odd taste in boys. Just sayin’. I’m glad that most of those boys remained crushes. I can look back on them fondly without regrets. Because, you know, sometimes the relationship you imagined having is better than the one that you would have actually had.”

  40. I would tell her to hang in there. Things get better, and then they get worse, but you get better able to handle it every day.

  41. I would tell myself I will find a way to survive so that one day the nightmares will have stopped, and I will find ways to experience what happy feels like, And, I am not alone.

    Thank you for Simon. Can’t wait to read the Upside of Requited! 😀

  42. Hang in there. This is not a quick fix, but you have more strength than you realise and you’ll get through this. Focus on the now and stop dreaming of the future because that will only bring you down. You are incredible. Oh, and you will also fall in love with a book called Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda and its creator, Becky. So yay, something to look forward to!

  43. That was about two years ago. I was really confused about who I was and what I wanted to be. I would just tell myself to relax and try my hardest. Even though luck doesn’t always seem in your corner you will get through the hard times and you will meet the friends you have been searching so hard for. I can’t imagine life without my best friend now.

  44. Aaa, what a gorgeous cover! <3

    If you could speak to your seventeen-year-old self and tell them one thing you've learned and wanted to share, what would it be and why?

    And if I could speak to my seventeen-year-old self, I'd tell her that she's on the right track and not to be discouraged. Maybe also to run that first book by a few more beta readers, that way I wouldn't have to be doing the revisions for the second edition I'm working on now. 😉

  45. I would probably want to tell myself not to be so angry – you’ll get out and things will be better. Also, don’t be such a jerk sometimes.

  46. Can’t wait to read this book, I really enjoyed Simon, so I’m expecting great things from Becky! She’s a real sweetheart by the way 🙂

  47. Don’t worry so much about finishing and graduating high school (and later, college), instead of counting down the days until you’ve finished, enjoy the experience(s).

  48. Dear, 17 year old me
    Don’t worry about the future and enjoy the present. Meet new people, have experiences. The opinion of other people should not matter. What’s important is what you think of yourself and your choices.

  49. I would tell her to always follow her dreams and never give up. 🙂

    The cover is amazingggg!!! Can’t wait to read it. Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda was absolutely amazing <3

  50. i would tell my seventeen year old self to not be afraid to do what you love even if the future seems uncertain. don’t worry about financial security or making sure you get a good job. worry about being happy and doing what makes you happy.

    i am so so excited for this book to come out next year!! I love the cover. Thank you so much.

  51. One thing I would say to my seventeen year old self is Your current “best friend” Kick her out. You’ll thank me for life.

  52. I’m 19 now and I could say I’m much different than I was when I was 17. I’d like to tell my 17year old self to never be afraid to be yourself and show it to others. And also never depend too much to others because most likely, they’ll never last and stick around so learn how to be independent. (:

  53. I would say to my 17 year old self to never believe what other people tell you about how you look, who you are. Just be happy being you.

  54. I would tell my seventeen-year-old self that reading Young Adult was one of the best decisions she ever made. Becky Albertalli, Adam Silvera, Sabaa Tahir and so many other authors had influenced me and I am so glad I had gone to the Decatur Book Festival to meet them. I would tell my seventeen-year-old self that none of her dreams are impossible and to not let others discourage her. I would tell her to be strong and to just know that reading will always be her escape from reality.

  55. What I would want to share with my seventeen-year-old self:

    1. Dreams can actually become a reality through dedication and hard work.
    2. Eat as many Oreos as you want!
    3. Keep talking to authors on social media as something may happen in the future…
    4. You are never too old to read Young Adult (especially books like SIMON VS.)
    5. Do not stop listening to your heavy metal playlist while reading.

    Why do I say all of these things?
    They make you who you are today.

  56. i’m so excited for this book i can’t even!
    and i would tell my 17 year old self that the cliché was right and things do get better after high school

  57. I’d tell my 17 year old self that no decisions are final. There are options and you can change your mind. Also, I’d thank her for discovering how great reading is.

  58. I can’t wait for this book, if I win the arc I will be so very super extra happy!!

    I would tell my 17 year old self to stop being so insecure because that will bring sadness and so many bad decisions. Well, at least all those decisions brought me here right? I was 17 almost 14 years ago, it gets a little bit better every year, slowly better but steady.

  59. It’s cliched, but I’d just tell my 17 year old self that it only gets better from here on out.

    LOVED Simon and can’t wait for this book, from another person who was and is a fat Jewish girl.

  60. As a fellow fat girl, I can’t wait to read this book! I LOVED Simon Vs. and am so excited to read this book too!

  61. I would tell my 17 year old self to take more risks because as a high schooler I was very reserved. I would also tell myself to read more good books and not just books everyone else told me to read.

  62. I am still 17 and will be 18 six weeks from now. But if I could tell my high school self something… I would tell myself that, love, you are not alone. Even if a lot of crazy things happened and will happen in our life, you are not alone. Be brave. It’ll get better somehow.

  63. The author’s note makes me want to read the book apart from the amazing synopsis. Fat girl doubting herself? Secret crushes and then finally getting noticed only to fear that the heart will get broken or . . . maybe not? Losing a twin because of the entry of a new love interest?

    Except for the last one, this book totally relates. So many people will connect with it!

    So, Hell yeah!!! I need to see this beauty on my bookshelf.

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Hi! I’m Jen! I’m a thirty-something introvert who loves nothing more than the cozy comfort of home and snuggling my two rescue cats, Pepper and Pancakes. I also enjoy running, jigsaw puzzles, baking and everything Disney. Few things bring me more joy than helping a reader find the right book for them!