A teen girl navigates friendship drama, the end of high school, and discovering her queerness in Ophelia After All, a hilarious and heartfelt contemporary YA debut by author Racquel Marie.
Ophelia Rojas knows what she likes: her best friends, Cuban food, rose-gardening, and boys – way too many boys. Her friends and parents make fun of her endless stream of crushes, but Ophelia is a romantic at heart. She couldn’t change, even if she wanted to.
So when she finds herself thinking more about cute, quiet Talia Sanchez than the loss of a perfect prom with her ex-boyfriend, seeds of doubt take root in Ophelia’s firm image of herself. Add to that the impending end of high school and the fracturing of her once-solid friend group, and things are spiraling a little out of control. But the course of love—and sexuality—never did run smooth. As her secrets begin to unravel, Ophelia must make a choice between clinging to the fantasy version of herself she’s always imagined or upending everyone’s expectations to rediscover who she really is, after all.
"Ophelia Rojas is the type of character that leaps off the page and directly into your heart—Ophelia After All is a queer delight through and through." —Leah Johnson, bestselling author of You Should See Me in a Crown
High school senior Ophelia Rojas, who's Cuban and white, is wild about the roses she grows, but to her friends and family, her salient trait is her "thirstiness": always having a crush on some boy or another. Which is why her sudden interest in quiet Afro Puerto Rican classmate Talia Sanchez surprises and confuses her. Prom's in three weeks, and there's drama in Ophelia's friend group, which includes Black and white characters as well as teens of Korean and Pakistani descent, about who's going with whom. Savvy about the complexity of intersectional identity, debut author Marie packs a lot of action into those three weeks, and shows a wonderful knack for creating sweetly complex relationships like Ophelia's bond with her parents as well as longtime bestie and neighbor Sammie. While there's plenty of information for teens grappling with sexuality and inclusive portrayals, including aromantic, asexual, bisexual, and pansexual representation the book never feels like a manual: Ophelia, Talia, and their friends are fully human creations. Ages 14 up. Agent: Thao Le, Dijkstra Agency.