If You Still Recognise Me

If You Still Recognise Me

By Author / Illustrator

Cynthia So


Romance & Relationships

Age range(s)



Little Tiger Press Group




Paperback / softback




If you loved Heartstopper and need more feel-good LGBTQ+ romance - If You Still Recognise Me is the one for you!

Elsie has a crush on Ada, the only person in the world who truly understands her. Unfortunately, they've never met in real life and Ada lives an ocean away. But Elsie has decided it's now or never to tell Ada how she feels. That is, until her long-lost best friend Joan walks back into her life.  In a summer of repairing broken connections and building surprising new ones, Elsie realises that she isn't nearly as alone as she thought. But now she has a choice to make...

A lyrical contemporary story about falling in love and finding yourself in the process, for fans of THE BLACK FLAMINGO, THE FALLING IN LOVE MONTAGE and Alice Oseman.

"An epic fandom, a scavenger hunt for a lost love and an ode to cultural inheritance - this is a wonderfully heartfelt and joyously queer romance" - Lauren James, author of The Loneliest Girl in the Universe.  "If You Still Recognise Me is a poignant, perfectly formed debut about queer love, fandom and family." - Lex Croucher, author of Reputation.  "Beautifully written with moments of sheer lyricism. A must-read for humans of all ages and walks of life. I loved it so much!" - Wibke Brueggemann, author of Love is for Losers.



Hong Kong born author Cynthia So's debut YA contemporary romance novel embraces a rainbow of identities. Showcased as an exciting new voice in Juno Dawson's Proud anthology, They discovered themselves during their writing journey and now identify as non-binary. If You Still Recognise Me explores the complex world of 'Shipping' and fan fiction with a dash of love for Asian culture, cookery and ice cream.

Their protagonist Elsie, reeling from a toxic relationship which has confused and traumatised her, begins to heal with the help of an online community which celebrates the world of her comic book crushes Zaria and Mayumi who feature in Eden Recoiling. Devouring each issue, she connects with the charismatic Ada whose fan fic for Eden Recoiling makes her feel alive and whom she longs to meet in person. A new job and a trail of letters open up new possibilities for Elsie as she decides on an ambitious plan to win Ada's heart that involves an intriguing Road Trip. She is helped along the way by her friends Felix, Joan and Ritika who are dealing with their own secrets. A rival for Ada's affection, Elsie's family dynamic and the arrival of her grandmother Po Po, who is estranged from her uncle, complicate matters further. Misunderstandings abound as Elsie discovers what really matters to her.

The strength of If You Still Recognise Me lies in the power of its representation, vibrancy, warmth and joy balanced with the complexity of navigating feelings and understanding the difference between a crush and true love. Cynthia also crosses generations, showcasing an immensity of love for young and old across the spectrum.

Heartstopper fans will adore this as it's about discovering who you are and celebrating your tribe. Cynthia explains their inspiration for their novel in an interview with the blog 'Chat Over Chai', "It just felt natural to me to include all these different characters and different aspects of queerness. I myself am bi and nonbinary, and also demisexual, so I identify as being on the ace spectrum, and it's always been a beautiful, comforting feeling when I'm surrounded by other queer people. I want my book to give off that same feeling, so it's filled with queer characters of all kinds. The vibe that I'm trying to achieve with this book is the opposite of loneliness. It's about connection, about seeing a vibrant world full of queer people who have so much love for each other."

Reflective of Cynthia's day job where they work to promote equality, diversity and inclusion, this book will appeal to readers who want books that reflect their daily reality as people of colour in diverse relationships, teens looking for representative YA and aficionados of fan fiction.

384 pages / Reviewed by Tanja Jennings, school librarian

Suggested Reading Age 14+


Other titles