My Mechanical Romance exceeded my expectations for a YA rom-com! I had just finished The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath and was in desperate need of something light with a happy-ever-after ending. My Mechanical Romance did just the trick.
Told in dual POV from the main characters, the growth of Bel and Teo’s relationship was believable, organic, and totally swoon-worthy. Bel Maier has just moved to a new high school for senior year because of family problems. She’s creative and artsy, but lacks self-confidence and a direction for where she wants her future to go. Teo Luna is the exact opposite. He’s involved, focused, and has his eyes on the gold for his future in engineering. When a dedicated teacher, Ms. Voss, finds out that Bel has talent for building, she urges Bel to try out for the robotics team under Teo’s leadership. Teo recruits Bel, and the story follows the two teens’ relationship, their robots, and their friends for the rest of the school year.
Women in STEM
I loved all the engineering vibes! There was quite a thorough coverage, especially with their robots and the robot tournament. The important subplot about female representation in engineering got highlighted (YES!). I thought it was wonderful how #sisterhood played out as several women and girls support each other in the male-dominated landscape of robotics.
Too cute! I’m glad the author kind of gave Bel a direction that wasn’t the normal track. Instead, Bel’s alternative path brought her to her goals in a way that was just as (if not more) rewarding. An out-of-the-box solution that felt right with Bel’s personality. Takeaway: there are many ways to reach your dreams! The obvious route isn’t the only way.
If you like YA romance stories with a high school vibe and a lot of robots, definitely pick this one up! If you’re looking for more books with women in STEM, check out Ali Hazelwood’s The Love Hypothesis.