Review | My Mechanical Romance – Alexene Farol Follmuth

As you know I tend to enjoy contemporary romances. So My Mechanical Romance caught my eye. I also loved the fact that this book had a female character interested in STEM! I finally had time to sit down and read this one and wanted to tell you about it today. Keep on reading to find out more.

A big thanks to Netgalley and Holiday House for providing me with an e-arc to read and review.

Opposites attract in this battle-robot-building YA romance from the NYT best-selling author of The Atlas Six.

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.

In her YA debut, Alexene Farol Follmuth, author of The Atlas Six (under the penname Olivie Blake), explores both the challenges girls of color face in STEM and the vulnerability of first love with unfailing wit and honesty. With an adorable, opposites-attract romance at its center and lines that beg to be read aloud, My Mechanical Romance is swoonworthy perfection.

A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection


“The world is not very helpful to a smart girl. More often it will try to force you inside a box. But I urge you not to listen.”

My Mechanical Romance was a quick and fun YA contemporary with some important themes. I think a lot of teenagers will be able to relate to Bel and will enjoy the banter and romance that develop in this story.

Our main character Bel is encouraged to join the robotics club. She isn’t sure about this, but isn’t welcomed with open arms. The members ignore her and the only other girl on the team isn’t exactly friendly either. Bel really had to fight for her place on this team, but they slowly start seeing she really can help them. I loved seeing her find her place in this team and the other members seeing that she really belonged.

Bel was a character I think a lot of teenagers will be able to relate to. She’s dealing with her parents’ divorce and how she should feel about both of her parents all the while she’s also trying to figure out her life. It isn’t easy for girls in STEM and I think Bel’s story shows us this. Add it being senior year and deciding what to do about her future and she’s under a lot of pressure. If you really think about teenagers have to make quite a few important decisions at a pretty young age.

I wasn’t a big fan of Mateo at first, but the more we got to know about him the more I really understood where he was coming from. His home life wasn’t always easy either and he spends his time split between using his brain and participating in sports. For me he ended up being a really likable character.

As for the romance I love how it slowly develops. This definitely isn’t a case of instalove. Mateo and Bel slowly start bonding over robotics as they get to know each other. They realize even though they’re pretty different they have a lot of things in common. I love their banter and road to a romantic relationship.

On top of that there were a lot of fun side characters that I would love to see get their own stories. My Mechanical Romance is a perfect summer read filled with quite a few different subjects that I definitely think readers will enjoy.

My Mechanical Romance was a fast and fun read. I haven’t read The Atlas Six (which this author wrote under a different name), but I need to soon. I love opposites attract romances and this one was very cute!

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