Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Published: May 5, 2015, HarperTeen
Format: eBook, 352 pages
Source: Google Play
Rating: 1.5/5 stars
Summary: When Gia Montgomery’s boyfriend, Bradley, dumps her in the parking lot of her high school prom, she decides to do the unthinkable…convince the cute guy waiting to pick up his sister to pretend to be her boyfriend for the night. The task is simple: two hours, zero commitment, a few white lies.
The problem is that days after prom, she can’t stop thinking about her fill-in boyfriend. But can Gia turn her fake boyfriend into a real one without exposing her lie and possibly destroying her friendships and her newfound relationship?
For the most part, I’ve heard raving reviews about Kasie West’s writing and how her contemporary romances are amazing. This did not live up to the hype whatsoever, sadly. Gia, the main character, was supposed to have this coming-of-age/redemption arc throughout the story, but it was so poorly executed that I ended up hating her more by the end. I was interested in the whole fake dating premise, but was disappointed on that front as well. Hayden, the fill-in boyfriend, was supposed to be nerdy and cute, but instead seemed very two-dimensional and boring, not to mention that fact that he liked Gia, which didn’t seem like something his character would do. The singular reason I’m giving this book a 1.5/5 is because there were some moments that were acceptable to me.
Gia was one of the biggest things wrong with this book. Character development is very important to me in a story, so her attempts to be a better person were more cringe-worthy than anything else. I honestly disliked her throughout the story, which made it easy for me to finish the book quickly with no connections to any of the characters. Gia’s relationship with her friends, family and significant others were never really in a good place, no thanks to her. I think most readers look for a character change at least somewhat in a story, but Gia’s was not done in a way that could have left me satisfied.
Not only was Gia herself sub par, but the way she was written did nothing to help her cause. Kasie West’s writing was so awkward and forced through the entirety of the novel, like she was trying to be funny and heartwarming but instead ended up with things that don’t sit well with readers. Some of the things she writes seem like they’re supposed to make the reader laugh or smile or have some kind of reaction other than a grimace or eye roll, which is what they actually receive.
I wouldn’t read this book if I were you. It’s possible that the only reason I finished this in a short amount of time was because I really wanted to read a book and I had heard good things about this one (shouldn’t have done it). Go read Morgan Matson or Stephanie Perkins or Jenny Han. There are plenty of contemporaries out there that have character development, positive female friendships, adorable and realistic romances and quality writing to choose from.
Happy reading (something that’s enjoyable) (sorry for not posting I am drowning in homework but watch me become motivated)