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I Wish You All the Best

Written by: Mason Deaver
Narrated by: MW Cartozian Wilson
Length: 8 hrs and 34 mins
5 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Perfect for fans of Adam Silvera and Becky Albertalli, Mason Deaver's groundbreaking debut will rip your heart out before showing you how to heal from tragedy and celebrate life in the process. 

When Ben De Backer comes out to their parents as nonbinary, they're thrown out of their house and forced to move in with their estranged older sister, Hannah, and her husband, Thomas, whom Ben has never even met. Struggling with an anxiety disorder compounded by their parents' rejection, they come out only to Hannah, Thomas, and their therapist and try to keep a low profile in a new school. 

But Ben's attempts to survive the last half of senior year unnoticed are thwarted when Nathan Allan, a funny and charismatic student, decides to take Ben under his wing. As Ben and Nathan's friendship grows, their feelings for each other begin to change, and what started as a disastrous turn of events looks like it might just be a chance to start a happier new life. 

At turns heartbreaking and joyous, I Wish You All the Best is both a celebration of life, friendship, and love, and a shining example of hope in the face of adversity.

©2019 Mason Deaver (P)2019 Scholastic Inc.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Amanda Raifsnider
  • 2019-05-21

This book was pretty good!

This book was pretty good! There were a few things I didn't like personally and I think that others will like it much more than I did but I am glad it exists, a book with a nonbinary main character by a nonbinary author. I liked the narrator okay, my one problem is that there was little distinction between who was talking and so I got a little confused sometimes

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-06-01

I Wish Every Enby The Best!

As a non-binary (enby) person, I fell in love with this book as soon as I heard that the main character was also non-binary! Add them, the diversity of the supporting cast, the setting being in NC, and their love interest being a black boy and now you got me hooked! There were many moments where I related too much with Ben that I could feel their exact emotions. There’s so many things about this book that touched me, the ending was especially tender. I’m... actually in love with this book. Thank you for making this and allowing young non-binary people to see a bit of themselves in your writing. Please continue to do so Mason!

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Karli
  • 2019-10-02

SO GLAD I downloaded

Not my usual go-to genre, but I'm so thankful I took the chance! I learned so much and it was such a beautiful
and sweet love story. I may not be on the queer spectrum myself, but the story was still very relatable and the characters extremely realistic.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-01-23

A Book I Didn't Know I Needed

If I'm honest, I'm at a bit of a loss over this book. In a good way though, I promise. A book that does so many things right though seems to be a rare gem to come by, but I'm so glad that I stumbled across this one. I used a credit for an audiobook, and after I realized it wasn't for me I quickly exchanged it. I saw this book in my recommended section, and I got as far as reading the first line of the description before I decided, "This is the one."

And boy, again, I'm so glad that audible had this book floating around in my recommended section because it was really something special. I was hooked from the get-go, which is amazing because I was mostly looking for something to occupy myself with at a lazy pace. Instead, I listened to this book during my entire work shift until my headphones died because I was too invested in the life of a person I saw too much of myself in. Wilson is also by far one of the best narrators I've ever listened to. I tend to be quite picky with narrators, dropping audiobooks if I don't care for the narrator, but Wilson's soothing and authentic performance really helped tie it all together. I really hope he narrates more books in the future because I'll listen to them regardless of what the stories are, I swear on my life.

This book handles messy topics in a way that's realistic yet hopeful, and as someone who can never fully come out unless I want to reenact Ben's entire journey myself, it's rough. I teared up a bunch of times when things became too real, but I also smiled a lot because there's something so beautiful in finding yourself again and building your own family. A family that stands with you, forever.

But most importantly I really needed this book and I didn't even realize it. Because at the end of the day, even when things are devastating and too impossible to handle, there will always be someone there to make you smile. Even if you have to spend a little time looking for them, they'll be there.

And that's more than I could ever hope for. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for writing this.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Quincy
  • 2020-01-26

Indifferent

The story was a good story but I’m a bit different just because the character was so melancholy that diaper the story for me but the story is a great reference for now as a old millennial I have seen this story many times indifferent way i thank the author for being them

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  • M J S
  • 2019-12-09

What a huge disappointment

I really wanted to like this book. I am thirsty for nonbinary protagonist YA literature and was so excited for this one. Sadly, (so sad!) I feel that the story ends up being a cautionary tale about NOT coming out as nonbinary. The main character's experience of coming out is so incredibly horrific that I'm certain it would make many gender fluid young people utterly paralyzed.

Additionally, the timing is all wonky. Really critical time in the MC's life passes without comment and, as a reader, I find myself wanting to look back and thing "How did they get from that brutal conversation to "a week later?"

Aside from that, SO many elements of the story are just unrealistic. The MC's relationship with their parents, which is incredibly two dimensional and threadbare is just one giant miss. Their transition to a new school is written without depth or detail, missing out on opportunities that could make the character complex and relatable. A lot of the examples are spoilers, so I don't want to give anything away, but here's a tiny one: 4 months after living with their sister and her husband, the MC "realizes" they don't know what their sister does for work. It's just the three of them in the house for four months! Eating meals together, going shopping, doing laundry, cohabitation. This hasn't come up yet? She's a realtor, btw. Not like a secret agent or spy or some sort of underground activist. A realtor. No way would this never come up in a family of three. Like "I have to leave early today to show a condo." or "I need to bake muffins for an open house." Like I said, very tiny example, but the book is full of stuff like this and it really bugged me.

One thing going for the book is some cute, snappy dialog between the MC and their friends. Also, it's pretty hard to like the main character because they are so closeted that they often hurt those around them with being so shut down. That felt real and I appreciated that the author did not try to make the MC super likable, because I think that's often a temptation. Perhaps to counteract this, though, the MC's best friend is so entirely perfect, it feels, again, unrealistic.

But, truly the story really drags and doesn't even feel super nonbinary-positive. Here is a small SPOILER, but important nonetheless: When the MC has a boyfriend, that boyfriend is described as bisexual. From where I sit, that totally discredits the MC's identity as nonbinary. Wouldn't that make the boyfriend pan or queer? Why specifically use the term bisexual, which limits attraction to just two genders. Especially since this is the boyfriend's first relationship with someone besides a girl. Gah.

Lastly, the reader was a bummer. They did not differentiate between thoughts and dialog. So, it was hard to follow. Sometimes, when the MC was answering a question or talking to someone, they would have thoughts in their head. However, the reader read them all the same way, so it would sound like the MC had FINALLY said something real to someone. However, it would turn out to be just something they thought about and I'd have to rewind and listen again to try and decipher what was actual dialog and what was 'in the head' ideas. Obviously, if you were reading this book to yourself, you'd know the difference, but listening to it was really challenging. In general, the reader did not seem versed in making different characters sound different at all, so the story felt like monotonous droning.

Anyway, if you are super thirsty for nonbinary protagonists and you have a healthy sense of self and will not mistake the MC's totally negative experience of coming out as playbook, then read this book. Otherwise, skip it and wait (as I seem to be doing) for an inspirational, interesting, romantic, hopeful book featuring a nonbinary MC.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • angela nabakka
  • 2019-11-16

beautiful story it has given me a new perspective

I love this book. its inspiring heartfelt and has given me a new perspective and helped me understand more about the LGBTQIA

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Rowan
  • 2019-10-20

Incredible!!!

As a queer non-binary person, I fucking loved this book and felt so seen and heard by it. I love queer love and reading this made me feel at hone, made me feel safe, and made me feel love. 11/10 would read/listen to again. So important and so beautiful!!!

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  • Donald
  • 2019-10-05

Ben

I know that a lot of people have trouble with gender identity. The book realy hits the spot on this topic.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Aly P
  • 2019-09-18

Lovely read

Super cute read! I loved this book, Ben is adorable and anxious and figuring out who they are. Ben comes out as non-binary to their parents, who kick them out, so Ben goes to live with their estranged older sister and her husband. Ben stays in the closet at their new school, but as they make friends and get a crush, they have to decide if they trust their friends to accept them. The story was well written, great pacing, fun and interesting characters, good amount of drama and fluff. The narrator of the audiobook was great and embodied Ben well. Great story.