Driving Lessons: A You Know Who Girls Novel – Annameekee Hesik
Layup and coming basketball player Abbey Brooks is dribbling her way through dykedom. Will she power forward and stop guarding her secret from Mom? And will Abbey’s love life ever go into overdrive, or even overtime?
Abbey Brooks is the gayest straight-A student at Gila High.
Nicknamed Abbey Road by her Fab Four fan father, Abbey is a layup and coming basketball player dribbling her way through dykedom.
Now approaching half court, Abbey began playing for the girls’ team in The You Know Who Girls: Freshman Year, the jump ball in this bouncy Sapphic series. In the first quarter of her life as a high school student, Abbey doubts her net worth, falls for a player, and lives by the lyrics: “Gay, you’ve got to hide your love away.”
In the second quarter, our girl is still short on confidence―though not on height―but she’s starting to realize that good things come in tall packages. In fact, Abbey’s Driving Lessons have her braking and entering a new phase. She’ll get bi with a little help from her friends, so she decides to set them straight: her lesbianism is not a technical foul.
Now that Abbey’s friends know the score, can she power forward and stop guarding her secret from Mom? It’s time to queer the air, but even though Abbey’s got a ticket to ride, she’s afraid to take the wheel.
Perhaps Abbey should take a cue from her idol, Marilyn Monroe, who said, sagely and succinctly, “Fear is stupid.” Abbey knows that coming out to her mom could have a favorable outcome―don’t bother to knock it ‘til you’ve tried it, after all. And even though Marilyn may not be the bombshell Mrs. Brooks is expecting, that doesn’t mean Abbey won’t be the daughter she’s accepting.
Plus, if Abbey comes out to her mom, maybe then she can come to her mom for girl talk. Abbey wants to be loved by you-know-who girl Keeta. Or Devin. Or Mia. Or Tai. Or Violet, a.k.a. Vi. Ay yi yi. Love is a magical mystery tour, Abbey realizes, accessible only via long and winding road, so it might be nice to have a parent in the passenger seat.
Meanwhile, author Annameekee Hesik can operate the queer shift―er, gear shift―superbly. Driving Lessons passes the Abbey Road test with flying colors, from basketball-oriented orange to vibrant Violet.
Hesik jumps through hoops to give readers a series that is spontaneous like a pick-up game, resounding like a buzzer, and unrestricted like a free throw. The writing is jaunty and smooth, with the swish of a basket that’s nothing but net. Hesik spins her characters in a similarly satisfactory way: as mercurial teenagers who are b-ballistic one minute and winsome the next.
As The Beatles implored, “Don’t let me down,” and not only does Hesik shoot and score points with readers; she has a ball from tip-off to time-out.
I hope you’re game for reading Hesik’s some-like-it-hotshot of a series, because you know who will like the You Know Who Girls?
You, that’s who.