As soon as i saw this book announced way back in 2018, i knew i had to read it. Girl in a hot dog costume on the front cover AND LGBTQ+ rep? Count me in. I’ve become quite fond of the niche market of books based in theme parks/arcades or festivals, so this was right up my street.
I’ve seen very mixed reviews for Hot Dog Girl from the beginning, and i’m not one to read reviews and let that interpret what i think of the book. In this case, i was slightly wary of it, however i cannot understand so many negative reviews. In short, it’s incredibly cute, incredibly fluffy, with great LGBTQ+ rep and some fantastic characters.
Regarding the representation in the book, for LGBTQ+ readers, it’s absolutely fantastic. To have a main character that is bisexual or pansexual is pretty rare for YA, so that was a nice change straight away. However, if you’re looking for any more representation, i wouldn’t say this book is for you. It’s full of pretty white characters from middle-class families. Which is okay but there just isn’t much representation to go around in this story!
One thing i really appreciated about it was that not every single little thing was wrapped up. As it is a romance story obviously the relationships all worked out in the end, everyone was with who they wanted to be with. However, our main character Elouise has been going through some parent issues throughout the book, and it was quite good to see that still unresolved by the end. It feels like life goes on for these characters and not everything is magically fixed straight away.
I really adored the atmosphere of this book too. As i said before, i love books based in these kinds of environments, and in some ways it really reminded me of Alex In Wonderland by Simon James Green. The atmosphere in Hot Dog Girl was completely different however. Jennifer created such a fun and inviting environment which made me want to stay in the book as long as possible. I felt welcomed by the theme pack and it genuinely took me a long time to put the book down.
The plot itself is a classic YA rom-com type of plot, with a few twists here and there. It’s the exact book that i wanted, to fly through, enjoy and laugh at. I did all those things and could not have expected much more from a YA cutesy love story.
I’m really glad that i didn’t fully listen to the reviews and let them put me off reading Hot Dog Girl all together. I very nearly didn’t pick it up, but if you’re after a cute and funny (and cringy) book that you can fly through, pick up Hot Dog Girl!