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source: Goodreads

Title: My Mechanical Romance

Author: Alexene Farol Follmuth

Publication date: 31 May 2022

Pages: 272 pages

ISBN: 9780823450107

Language: English


Bel would rather die than think about the future. College apps? You’re funny. Extracurriculars? Not a chance. But when she accidentally reveals a talent for engineering at school, she’s basically forced into joining the robotics club. Even worse? All the boys ignore Bel—and Neelam, the only other girl on the team, doesn't seem to like her either.

Enter Mateo Luna, captain of the club, who recognizes Bel as a potential asset—until they start butting heads. Bel doesn’t care about Nationals, while Teo cares too much. But as the nights of after-school work grow longer and longer, Bel and Teo realize they've made more than just a combat-ready robot for the championship: they’ve made each other and the team better. Because girls do belong in STEM.


Thank you NetGalley and Holiday House for the ARC!

To be honest, I'm starting to lose interest in reading books with teenage characters who are still looking for what they want to be in the future or still thinking about their dreams. However, I was drawn to reading this book because of the title! The title 'mechanical' reminds me directly of the world of engineering that I was involved in college, especially when the blurb mentions club robotics, which immediately made me more interested because the world it brought seemed to be familiar.

The story revolves between Bel and Teo, where Bel still doesn't know what she wants to be in the future while Teo already has an orderly life with all the goals he wants to achieve. Thanks to the recommendation of one of her teachers, Bel tries to join the robotics club which is unexpectedly chosen by the captain, Teo. However, after joining it turned out not to be easy but getting harder. Bel seemed to be considered non-existent and even other female member besides herself actually hated her. It gets worse when Bel and Teo are always arguing about the robot they should create.

The academic world or STEM that is built in this book is very great explained with all the atmosphere of the robotic lab, their discussion of the concept of robotics even up to the robotics competition is explain in complete. It's fun to follow even though it's quite difficult at the beginning because there are several robotic terms used here. But, over time I got used to it and instead I fell in love with the excitement and euphoria when they were in the tournament.

There is also a bit of subtle mention here about the existence of women in the engineering world. Many still look down on them and there are not many people interested to join because it seems that there are only 3 women in the robotics club and that actually happens in the real world.

The focus of the story, which is really about the robotics team, is the trigger for Bel's character to determine her future, because here she must determine which campus she will go to. However, according to the title, there will also be a romance story that will be raised here, which is certain to happen between Bel and Teo. There are many banters that occur between the two at the beginning of the story, making their relationship in the future which changes drastically invites a smile when read. The dual POV provided also makes us as readers understand what they are thinking. The love story is not smooth, there are conflicts that occur and for me this adds to the excitement of the book that makes us not bored at all when reading it.

The characters of Bel and Teo are also very well developed. We can feel the changes that occur when compared to the beginning of the book. The supporting characters are well written and well developed. I love to see the friendship that eventually emerges between these characters even though at first you might say they are at odds.

I must say that I LOVE THIS BOOK SO MUCH! I enjoy reading this book and love that everything happens in there. I give this book 4/5 ⭐! If you love academic enemies to lovers, STEM / academic world, cute banters, and dual POV I really suggest you to read this book!

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