I had a few hours to spare before getting ready, so I decided to flip through and read my old annotations, remembering that I’d highlighted every single one of Ophelia’s lines, because of course I did. I stopped on act 4, scene 5, Ophelia’s mad scene, and amid her convoluted meltdown, noticed the line “Lord we know what we are, but know not what we may be.”
I’d read it before, obviously, but never paid it much attention. And I’m not sure why.
Or, maybe I do know. I’ve spent most of my life telling myself I know who I am—a lifeboat of identity in the turbulent waves of growing up. A hopeless romantic, a rose gardener, a chismosa, a girl who falls for every boy who looks her way.
I forgot there are parts of me I’ve yet to discover, versions of me I’ve yet to become.
Premise: Having been “boy-crazy Ophelia” for so many years, our heroine has no idea what to do when she starts to develop one of her infamous, fluttery, heartfelt crushes on a girl. As the clock ticks down towards graduation, Ophelia feels isolated, terrified of changing the image her friends and family have of her just before they split up for college… and yet, on closer inspection, maybe Ophelia isn’t as alone in her queer identity crisis as she might have thought…
Rainbow rep: a protagonist working out her orientation, attracted to multiple genders and trying to figure out a label that fits; a queer ensemble cast including an aromantic girl, a pansexual boy, a bisexual girl, a biromantic ace boy, and a boy who normally likes girls but sometimes has sexy dreams about boys and what does that mean?? Who knows, bro?
Content considerations: mild internalised homophobia/biphobia; depictions of homophobic family members; one pretty accurate and painful appearance of a “political correctness has gone mad” dudebro.
Oh Ophelia, you’ve been on my mind since I finished this book.