But . . .
By the end, I felt like Ruby had some realistic breakthroughs that weren't all moralistic and completely rejecting of boys and not completely "I'm happy with who I am and I don't need a boy to be happy." After all, girls like boys! I like boys! People are generally attracted to others and happy when one (or more) of those others likes you back. And while I do think there is something to be said for not hooking up with a guy your good friend likes, I liked the idea that you forgive people you love. What I loved about The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks and what I think Lockhart does really well here again with Ruby is convey how complicated relationships and feelings can be, how sometimes you feel a way that you intellectually know is not right or healthy or helpful but you cannot seem to control it. It's hard to know what's right and sometimes hard to do that even if you know what it is. Sometimes making yourself happy means hurting others, or making one person happy means hurting another. So yes, the novel is cute, but it also captures a lot of complexity. And I also loved the notes that Noel wrote Ruby! There's a lot to be said for feelings expressed in words and then actually written down on paper to be read and savored. And his were so creative. I want notes like that.