Tweet Cute: An unconventional sweet romance

Kelly Gildea, Literature Review Editor

Tweet Cute follows two polar opposite high schoolers. Pepper Evans, the high-achieving swim team captain who moved to NYC from Nashville years ago, but still feels out of place in her own city and in her new life. Jack Campbell, the class clown who doesn’t seem to have a care in the world, grapples with his parents’ expectations for him and his jealousy of his twin brother, Ethan. When the two start becoming closer (and eventually start a Twitter war), they grow into better people and finally find their place in a confusing and complicated world.

Tweet Cute by Emma Lord is one of my favorite romance novels of all time. It’s not particularly deep or complex, but it is heartwarming, realistic, and highly relatable. From its likable characters to its well-paced and dynamic plot, the book delivers an awkward and sweet high school romance that all audiences can enjoy.

Pepper Evans is the daughter of divorced parents who started the fast food chain Big League Burger, and has spent her life since moving to NYC trying to fit in by achieving high grades and perfecting her college application. She’s known Jack Campbell for all of high school, but finds him annoying and careless, while he thinks she is too serious and robotic. However, as a result of their swim team duties, and eventually the Twitter war raging between Big League Burger and Jack’s family’s restaurant, the two start getting closer. As the pair fight, make up, push each other out of their comfort zones, and learn new things about each other, they (not very surprisingly) fall for each other, changing for the better.

The characters are what really drew me in, and their development is the focal point of the story. Pepper is very relatable – she’s a hard worker with family problems, relationship problems, and no idea what she wants to do with her life. Meanwhile, Jack struggles to find his own identity amongst his parents’ expectations and the world’s apparent preference for his twin brother, all of which are normal teenage problems. All of the side characters are also thoroughly developed and interesting, from Pepper’s strong-willed sister to Jack’s stubborn dad, the characters play a huge part in enhancing the story. The author helps the readers find bits of themselves in the characters, encouraging the audience to root for them even through their mistakes.

Jack and Pepper’s relationship is predictable, cliché, and a little awkward, but it is also realistic and heartwarming. The two push their way through fights, dares, and secrets and end up exactly where they belong – with each other. They draw each other out of their comfort zones and help each other gather the courage to break through the expectations that the world has set for them. The novel acknowledges the difficulty of change and growth, but also encourages its readers to pursue their dreams just as the characters do.

The plot is fairly fast-paced, interesting, and unique, tackling the difficulties that accompany social media, high school, and family problems. The characters are constantly facing new difficulties, which engage the readers and keep them on their toes. Finally, the characters’ problems are never grand or distant; they are instead relatable trials, struggles, and insecurities that readers are bound to have encountered before. Overall, Tweet Cute is a heartwarming and cute romance with various characters that readers will be able to relate to. Lord’s clear and engaging writing style, likable characters, and interesting plot make this book a great read.