Katie Heaney has never had a boyfriend. She’s never had a boyfriend. She’s had crushes on boys since kindergarten and while she’s kissed a few toads, she’s never quite found her prince.
Katie’s lack of a significant other is the subject of her memoir, Never Have I Ever. Katie turns the harsh light onto herself to look at everything from those first crushes we have upon entering school to the dating scene in college to the world of on-line dating. She tells each story with honesty, wit and humor (if necessary). Katie not only puts her crushes under the microscope for examination, but also herself. The end result is an entertaining memoir that isn’t cruel to either her dates or herself, but is instead a journey into understanding who Katie is and why she’s willing to wait for that perfect person to experience all the highs and lows of a relationship.
Along the way, she sprinkles in a few wry observations that had me chuckling out loud including
“It isn’t true that letting people copy your homework makes you popular, but it definitely doesn’t hurt.”
“Middle school is three years spent worrying whom to sit and stand with.”
As I read this, I couldn’t help but think of this as the anti-thesis of Chelsea Handler’s My Horizontal Life. Katie never seeks to demean or put down her potential dates and she doesn’t offer any excuses for her behaving poorly (she doesn’t). Instead, she allows the story to unfold in a conversational tone. (Reading the book, I couldn’t help but want to hear the audio version to hear these stories told in her own voice. Alas, the audio book is read by someone else). And while some of the assessment of on-line dating and those who on-line date may seem a bit harsh, at first, I chalk it up to these experiences being closer to the time of writing.
There were many times reading this that I felt like I’d found someone who understood the trials and tribulations that can come from dating — or not dating, in this case. Reading Katie’s struggles, I was reminded of my own while single. I’m pleased that she had the courage to write this book and to put herself out there for the world to read about.
In the interest of full disclosure, I received a digital ARC of the this book from NetGalley in exchange for a fair review.