Author: Jenny Kaczorowski
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance
Release Date: December 19, 2013
Source: Bloomsbury via NetGalley
Goodreads rating: 4.33 out of 5.00 (12+ ratings)
For seventeen-year-old Bria Hale, image is everything. She’s a militant vegan with purple hair, Doc Martens and a permanent scowl. Kissing captain of the football team Ben Harris? Definitely not part of that image.
Now with each secret kiss, she’s falling deeper for the boy every girl at Oceanside High is crushing on. Throw in a few forbidden bacon cheeseburgers and she’s facing one major identity crisis.
Ignoring Ben should be easy, but when a flashy display of artistic spirit lands her in close quarters after hours with the boy she’s too cool to like, she can’t keep pretending those kisses meant nothing. With her reputation and her heart on a collision course, Bria must either be true to herself or to the persona she’s spent all of high school creating.
Review by Nara
I have to say, this book was certainly a lot less fluffy than I thought it would be. I mean, I suppose it is still a fairly fluffy book, but it definitely wasn't at the fluffiness level of say, The Distance Between Us or Meant to Be or similar such books. It was still quite enjoyable though, with a cute romance and interesting characters.
I guess the romance perhaps wasn't quite as convincing as I would have liked it to be. Possibly this is because the two characters (rather unexpectedly) were actually already in love at the very start of the book. Surprisingly, instead of the whole coincidental meeting leads to attraction leads to relationship cliche that I was expecting, our love interest is actually a childhood friend of our main character. And their first kiss is in the first chapter, within the first couple of pages. That being said though, by the end of the book, I had definitely been swept away by their romance- it was pretty cute :3
Despite the blurb putting quite a large focus on the concept of Bria choosing between being true to herself or to the persona she's spent high school creating, I feel there really wasn't THAT much focus on that in the book. Certainly, the conflict was there, but as the reader, I didn't feel that Bria's biggest issue was her identity crisis. A lot more focus was put on the fact that Ben was Bria's best friend's brother, and what that meant for her relationship with her best friend. I was also a bit confused as to the significance of her having been in a car accident. She says she doesn't like showing her scar to people, but I honestly can't remember whether this was a particularly large trauma or whether she only shows it to Ben or something. #bookamnesia
Probably the only really big flaw was that, seriously, I really didn't appreciate the character of Rafael. He really served no purpose except to cause more conflict between Ben and Bria. I mean, fair enough, you have to include such characters in a contemporary to prevent the plot from being too boring, but Raf just seemed excessively superficial.