I embarked on an adventure the summer after my college graduation by participating in a Summer Service Learning Program in China where I met a broad range of students from all over the US. Among one of them was a smart, witty girl that attended school in Florida. She was quirky, funny, and a little bit of a nerd, but most of all, she had a gentle, compassionate soul. Little did I know that one day she would become a famous blogger and a published writer.
I am proud to call S.C. Rhyne my friend. Her blog and debut novel The Reporter & The Girl (Minus the Super Man!) has become a guilty pleasure for many readers. The story follows the life of a quirky girl (Sabrien) and her insensitive love interest (Jon) as they struggle to find their sense of self and the courage to express their love for one another. What makes this story stand out from many others is the raw emotion expressed by the characters. The quirky characters are brought to life and made so real that s/he could be your friend, your brother, your sister, your coworker or even yourself.
The first phone conversation that Jon and Sabrien had was not love at first talk. In fact, it was anything but romantic. The reader starts to wonder what Sabrien even sees in Jon. From the very beginning, Jon becomes an anti-hero that you sort of love to hate, but occasionally root for. He is the typical jerk that women hope to change. Sabrien isn’t perfect either, she is strong, independent, and stubborn. Yet she is also afraid to be vulnerable. It is in this setting that the two awkward lovebirds find comfort in each other.
The reader follows their journey of random conversations, awkwardly-funny-erotic love-making scenes, and personal insecurities. While they are an unlikely couple, the reader can’t help but hope they will end up happily ever after. Because after all, there is a little bit of Sabrien and Jon in each and every one of us. The moments where they fall in love, attempt to confess their love, and fail miserably at communicating are universal trials that every couple goes through, and S.C. Rhyne is a master of making moments come to life.
If I were to sum up the story and relationship of Sabrien and Jon, it would be with this quote (supposedly by Robert Fulghum) “We’re all a little weird, and life’s a little weird. And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”