“Activism and hope can heal and connect us, even in the most difficult times.”
Yes No Maybe So proves just that! It follows the story of Jamie Goldberg and Maya Rehman – polar opposites on many counts – that find commonality in their political beliefs and desire to make a difference in their community. Maya is a strong, bold and sassy independent, whereas Jamie is a more reserved, insecure and sensitive individual. While Jamie may be reserved, his passion and dedication to politics are far from quiet.
When a special election is held for a seat in the Georgia State Senate, Jamie jumps at the opportunity to volunteer with pride. Maya on the other hand needs a little more convincing. After a not so gentle push from her mother to join her childhood friend in supporting the campaign, Maya accompanies Jamie in canvassing for votes.
At first, Maya uses her time with Jamie as a distraction from her life. It will be the first Ramadan since her parents’ separation and her relationship with her best friend seems to be dwindling. After a new bill is proposed to prevent the wearing of Hijab however, Maya jumps all in with Jamie to advocate for her family and fight for new leadership.
As the election comes near, Jamie and Maya’s new found friendship is undeniable. Jamie offers Maya support in maneuvering through her parents’ separation – something he experienced first hand himself years prior. In return, Maya helps Jamie take on his biggest fear – public speaking – when he is asked to give the toast for his sister’s Bat Mitzvah. Their strong friendship and heavy reliance on each other flourishes into something deeper. This proves difficult when their religious beliefs, Maya’s strict no dating rule, and the opinions of their parents come into play. Will connection and hope be enough to take on all that is against them?
Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed use their own experiences with local activism to weave a realistic love story that is based on the ability to find connection in activism. It is not just a fluffy love story. It demonstrates how the 2016 American election has influenced a younger audience and encouraged social consciousness. It shows young activists addressing various social justice issues including xenophobia, anti-Semitism, and homophobia. It relays the hardships of young love, adolescent anxieties and the dangers of social media. It is an inspiring story of love, hope and resistance that truly makes you feel you have the power to make a difference in this crazy world.
— Madison P.