Title // This Is Not A Love Sccene
Author // S. C. Megale
Publisher // Wednesday Books
Publication Date // May 7, 2019
Synopsis // Lights, camera—all Maeve needs is action. But at eighteen, a rare form of muscular dystrophy usually stands in the way of romance. She’s got her friends, her humor, and a passion for filmmaking to keep her focus off consistent rejection…and the hot older guy starring in her senior film project.
Tall, bearded, and always swaying, Cole Stone is everything Maeve can’t be. And she likes it. Between takes, their chemistry is shockingly electric.
Suddenly Maeve gets a taste of typical teenage dating life, but girls in wheelchairs don’t get the hot guy—right? Cole’s attention challenges everything she once believed about her self-image and hopes for love. But figuring this out, both emotionally and physically, won’t be easy for either of them. Maeve must choose between what she needs and what she wants, while Cole has a tendency to avoid decisions altogether. And her failing lungs might not wait for either.
My Rating: ★☆☆☆☆
Two alternative titles I thought up for This Is Not A Love Scene:
1. This Is A Sex Scene
2. This Is Not A Good Book
I am so disappointed. I read the synopsis, and thought the premise would be absolutely enchanting. The idea of a disabled girl finding love when she previously thought it would be impossible? I couldn’t wait to read it! Unfortunately, I wish that I had waited forever to read it and right now I want to burn it out of my brain.
Maeve is more horny that Rhysand in A Court of Frost and Starlight. Don’t let the description that she wants love fool you; no, all she wants is sex. I honestly don’t think there was one single page in this 300 page sucker that didn’t have a reference to sex in it, or at the very least, some cringe worthy flirting.
This book should really not have been written for young adults. Although the main character is eighteen and a senior in high school… it really doesn’t feel like she is. I mean, yes, some teens have sex and it’s fine to talk about that, but really? The entire plot of the book revolves around sex? The only thing Maeve can think or talk about is sex?
I honestly wasn’t sure she was in high school for the longest time because in this novel, there is only one scene that takes place at school, and that’s when she and her friend ditch class to hang out in the bathroom talking about sex. There were also some cringy, awkward, and overly explicit descriptions of sex and sexting (that might rival SJM levels of explicit and cringy) where I just skipped sections of the book without reading because as a 17 year old myself I felt uncomfortable reading them.
Maeve is incapable of seeing or thinking of anything without turning it into sex. At one point, she sees some little kids playing in a fountain and she describes the fountain as erotic?? She’s eating sausages and she makes a sex joke out of them? The first line of the book is “I like being ridden, and offered the change to pretty much every guy” and wow I should have known from then and just put the book down and not read it but I foolishly thought the rest of the book wouldn’t be like it… or worse.
Maeve even has some extremely creepy relations with Old Man Friends, who she nicknames OMFs. Apparently from the way it’s written, old men just gravitate towards her? She emails them, hangs out with them. At one point, she talks about how one random old man stranger buys her ice cream and then spends the whole day with her and at the end he asks to kiss her on the cheek??? And instead of being like eww that’s inappropriate and creepy, Maeve literally says “Just the cheek? Shame…”
Maeve also basically worships all men and hates all women.This applies for people her age, people slightly older than her, and of course, her Old Man Friends. In the book, she basically only has one female friend, and the entirety of their friendship is talking about boys and sex. Other than that, she surrounds herself with guys.
In fact, she even plays out two conversations in her mind that differ for guys versus girls. She literally says IF SHE WAS A GUY (I would say x) BUT SINCE SHE’S NOT (I’ll say y). At one point, someone basically steals her service dog, and she’s like IF SHE WAS A GUY I would call it a minor misunderstanding BUT SINCE SHE’S NOT I’ll threaten legal action where’s my lawyer. And when someone offers to mail her letter, IF SHE WAS A GUY can you overnight me to your bed BUT SINCE SHE’S NOT no.
And while I’m complaining about the over sexualization of everything, let’s talk about her “love interest” and by that I mean sex interest, Cole. After reading this book, I can tell you exactly zero things about his personality. What I can tell you, is that he’s really sexy. Apparently. Because that’s literally the only thing Maeve describes or wants about him. It’s like how Bella only likes Edward because he’s good looking, except x1000 because now instead of Bella yapping about Edward’s gorgeous sparkling vampire skin, Maeve yaps about Cole’s d*ck. For pages. And pages. And pages.
I’m so done. I want to throw this book. It’s awful. But, mind you, if you thought the sex made it bad enough, there are some things that make it Even! Worse!
Back to never knowing they’re in high school, it seems that Maeve has one small goal besides having sex. She does want to go to UCLA to study film. So do all of her friends (her guy friends, obviously, because she doesn’t have any other friends). Well, it turns out that even though she apparently regularly ditches class and is never seen to be doing homework or studying or anything, she and all of her friends get in! Hooray! Don’t even get me started on how unrealistic that is; UCLA is the most applied to school in the country, then have ~15% acceptance rate, their average GPA is like 4.6. That school is insanely difficult to get into, and I know people who had like 4.5 GPAs (out of 4) and perfect scores on the SAT and a bunch of extracurricular activities and volunteer work and all of that and they still got rejected so the idea that Maeve who literally cares about nothing but sex and doesn’t seem to put in any work at all, and all of her friends, would get in no problem without even being concerned about the idea of getting rejected is laughable.
This last point is the absolute worst though, the last string. This book was really problematic in the way it discussed lgbtq+ people. Everyone in the book is straight by the way, so no representation there. Lgbtq+ people are mentioned twice:
1. Maeve and her one female friend are complaining about guys and Maeve flippantly says “clearly I just shouldn’t be with men. I wish I were a lesbian,” and her friend replies “Same.” That’s the only time this is ever mentioned or addressed in the book. This is mildly annoying how cavalierly she seems to treat the issue, dismissing the struggles they go through so she can whine about not getting enough sex.
2. After texting a guy, Maeve says “tonight I felt normal. Healthy. Not asexual. Tonight, I felt like a person.” This is EXTREMELY PROBLEMATIC is she just basically invalidating asexuals and saying that the’re not normal They’re not people? That you have to have sex in order to be a person???
This book is awful and should be burned off the face of the planet. Thanks for coming to my ted talk.