The Story of Leah Burke

I choose to read the book Leah On the Offbeat because it is the sequel to Simon Vs the Agenda, a book I read and really enjoyed. This book is about Leah Burke and her struggles with her sexuality, band, self-esteem, and crush on her taken friend. The book starts with Leah at her band’s practice, where she is a drummer. She is debating the set list with her other band members, and it is immediately noticed that she does not put up with nonsense and likes to get her way. The band then decides to wait for their other members to discuss the set list, and the practice ends. We then learn that Leah’s mom is a single mother and her dad is out of the picture. Leah’s mom has Leah’s car, and she is too busy to pick her up, so Leah is asked to take the late bus home. Leah decides to go watch the play rehearsal where her friends are until the late bus leaves the school. She watches her friends as they finish up rehearsal, and they get together and start discussing the play. We are then introduced to some of the characters from the previous book. They then all decide to go to Waffle House together.

When the main character, Leah Burke, was first introduced, I was shocked. She is much more assertive in this book than she was in the last. She seemed very passive in the last book, and in this one, she is not afraid to share what she is thinking. She has no problem arguing about the song her other band mate, Morgan, had picked out, comparing it to meth. I had known from the previous book that, compared to the rest of the people where she lived, her home life was not perfect, but already from the first chapter I learned how much worse her situation is compared to her peers. She goes to school where almost everyone else is well off, and most people’s parents are still together, and she feels like an outsider. Leah is a spunky character, and I am excited to see what happens next in her story.

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