Title: Miss Meteor
Author: Tehlor Kay Mejia & Anna-Marie McLemore
Publishing Date: Sept. 22nd 2020
Age Category & Genre: Young Adult Magical Realism
There hasn’t been a winner of the Miss Meteor beauty pageant who looks like Lita Perez or Chicky Quintanilla in all its history. But that’s not the only reason Lita wants to enter the contest, or why her ex-best friend Chicky wants to help her. The road to becoming Miss Meteor isn’t about being perfect; it’s about sharing who you are with the world—and loving the parts of yourself no one else understands. So to pull off the unlikeliest underdog story in pageant history, Lita and Chicky are going to have to forget the past and imagine a future where girls like them are more than enough—they are everything.
Witty and heartfelt with characters that leap off the page, Miss Meteor is acclaimed authors Anna-Marie McLemore and Tehlor Kay Mejia’s first book together.
Anna-Marie McLemore and Tehlor Kay Mejia are writers that I have heard of often, and when Miss Meteor was slated to be published, I have had such high interest with it, particularly due to one of the characters being Pansexual.
That being said, in Miss Meteor, we meet Lita Perez and Chicky Quintanilla in the small town of Meteor, New Mexico. Lita is isn’t like others, in fact she is anything but ordinary. Made of stardust, Lita is a celestial being bound to go back to the stars. Chicky Quintanilla is the youngest in a family of 6. She is shy, withdrawn and reluctant. But this year, she is tired of everyone walking all over her and is determined to show up.
We are welcomed to the biggest year of the Miss Meteor pageant held each year in their town, the 50th Annual Meteor Regional Pageant and Talent Competition. Lita and Chicky have their own agendas in joining the pageant, Lita thinks it is a way to stay in her home in Meteor, and Chicky thinks it is for revenge. And although the town is alive with excitement with full on celebration, the people in Meteor know that it is not all there is. McLemore and Mejia wrote in important themes in their book even with such a fun concept of a pageant as the main premise. They discussed themes of marginalization and bigotry within communities, and the difference between acceptance and tolerance of the queer community. Which is very prominent in my own community. As the rich become richer and the poor always being looked down. But there is also the matter of colorism in the community wherein people who have fairer skin have better opportunities that those who have darker ones. And how those who are queer are not really fully accepted, but more of tolerated.
A big aspect of what I enjoyed the most in Miss Meteor is the friendship and found family. While Lita is made of starlight, she is surrounded by people who support and love her. Chicky and Lita’s friendship was lovely when they were younger. And even if they did grow apart for a while, they found themselves in orbit of each other once again during the 50th Miss Meteor pageant. The way their dynamics worked was also really pleasant to see where Lita fits the missing puzzle piece of what Chicky needs in her life. Additionally, the found family aspect is with Cole and Junior, where they became a small band of misfits on their own. I also loved that they were well represented, Chicky being pansexual and Cole being a trans, this book will help the people who want to be seen and understood.
Tehlor Kay Mejia and Anna-Marie McLemore wrote such an impeccable book that made me laugh, cry, and yearn. This book perfectly depicted me through Chicky, as I was also trying to figure out my sexuality these past few years. Miss Meteor gave us a fantastic story on friendship, finding our identity and a family of our own.
Thank you to Karina of @Afire Pages for having me as a host, to HarperTeen for a copy of the ARC in exchange for an honest review, and to Anna-Marie McLemore and Tehlor Kay Mejia for this marvelous book.
Tehlor Kay Mejia is a YA author and poet at home in the wild woods and alpine meadows of Southern Oregon. When she’s not writing, you can find her plucking at her guitar, stealing rosemary sprigs from overgrown gardens, or trying to make the perfect vegan tamale. She is active in the Latinx lit community, and passionate about representation for marginalized teens in media. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @tehlorkay.
Her short fiction appears in the ALL OUT and TOIL & TROUBLE anthologies from Harlequin Teen. Her debut YA fantasy, WE SET THE DARK ON FIRE, is out 2/26/2019 from Katherine Tegen/Harper Collins, with a sequel to follow. Her debut middle grade, PAOLA SANTIAGO AND THE DROWNED PALACE, releases from Disney-Hyperion/Rick Riordan Presents in 2020, with a sequel to follow in 2021. METEOR, co-written with Anna-Marie McLemore, is out summer 2020 from HarperTeen.
Anna-Marie McLemore was born in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and taught by their family to hear la llorona in the Santa Ana winds. They are the author of THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS, a finalist for the 2016 William C. Morris Debut Award; 2017 Stonewall Honor Book WHEN THE MOON WAS OURS, which was longlisted for the National Book Award in Young People’s Literature; WILD BEAUTY, a Kirkus Best Book of 2017; and BLANCA & ROJA, a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice. DARK AND DEEPEST RED, a reimagining of The Red Shoes based on true medieval events, is forthcoming in January 2020.
There is a tour-wide giveaway of a copy of Miss Meteor! Check out the link below for the rafflecopter link.
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This tour was hosted by Karina at Afire Pages, check out the other reviews and content created by my co-hosts on the links below!
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