Tweet Cute is a wonderful You've Got Mail retelling for the age of Twitter brand wars, social apps and kids trying to decide whether or not to go into the family business.
Emma Lord takes the Big Business forces out Little Business and twists it just enough to make both main characters relatable. Straight A- student and swim team captain Pepper's mother is pressuring her to keep a Twitter war going with a local deli... in her spare time. Pepper feels gross about it and really doesn't have the time to be tweeting non-stop, as everyone realizes when her mid-term grades eventually come out. Jack is justifiably angry that Pepper's family's much-bigger business has stolen his grandmother's secret recipe grilled cheese for their new menu. (See spoiler below.) As you might expect, Twitter comes to the defense of the underdog, resulting in thousands of followers online and a never-ending line of customers in real life. It's this last bit that makes the Twitter war feel less terrible--Jack's family's business gets a much-needed financial boost from the whole thing.
Meanwhile, Jack and Pepper have to work out the swim schedule at the school's pool and organize joint fundraisers between her swim team and his dive team. They are also anonymously bonding through Weasel, a chat app that Jack built for use by students at their school. With three different modes of communication, it might have been confusing, but Jack and Pepper talk in person about their Twitter war, toning down the enemies-to-lovers vibe and even turning it into a playful competition. It's very clear that Pepper doesn't want to be involved, which pushes the narrative to the right side of hate-to-love. (Warning that there are a few moments where Jack's twin brother crosses a line due to some sibling rivalry.)
This book may be for you if you enjoy:
- the enemies-to-lovers trope, or enemies-to-friends-to-lovers
- social media references (and cat memes)
- grilled cheese and/or baked goods
- You've Got Mail or the trope where the MCs are already falling for each other but don't know it
Tweet Cute is a really fun debut from an author who has clearly been in the social media trenches. The romance is swoony, the banter is snarky and the cheese is melty.
Content Warnings: embarrassing photo of Pepper is turned into a meme, hospitalized grandparent, Twitter hacking, complicated sibling-parent relationship
Suzanne received a copy of this book from the publisher for review.
Spoiler: Jack's Dad and Pepper's Mom worked together at the deli one summer while the mom was saving up to start her own bakery. Then Jack's Dad stole her recipes and her investor dropped his support. So this is petty, but it's revenge, not just Big League Burger being randomly evil.