Friday, 27 January 2017

The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West

When Gia Montgomery's boyfriend, Bradley, dumps her in the parking lot of her high school prom, she has to think fast. After all, she'd been telling her friends about him for months now. This was supposed to be the night she proved he existed. So when she sees a cute guy waiting to pick up his sister, she enlists his help. The task is simple: be her fill-in boyfriend—two hours, zero commitment, a few white lies. After that, she can win back the real Bradley.

The problem is that days after prom, it's not the real Bradley she's thinking about, but the stand-in. The one whose name she doesn't even know. But tracking him down doesn't mean they're done faking a relationship. Gia owes him a favor and his sister intends to see that he collects: his ex-girlfriend's graduation party—three hours, zero commitment, a few white lies.

Just when Gia begins to wonder if she could turn her fake boyfriend into a real one, Bradley comes waltzing back into her life, exposing her lie, and threatening to destroy her friendships and her new-found relationship.

This was really easy to read, although I did have a few niggling issues with it. So, it starts with Gia getting dumped right before prom and has to come up with a boyfriend fast, so she doesn't lose face in front of her friends - right away, can you see the issue I had? Lo and behold, a cute boy has just dropped off his sister and Gia persuades him to stand in. Even though a lot of this was pretty cringe-worthy and surface-level, it was a sweet, light hearted rom-com of a book.

Gia was really self-centred, but it becomes apparent that she wants to work on it, on her desperate need to be liked and have proper friends who care about her - I mean, having her brother call her out on it, publicly and painfully, sure helped. But despite that, she was surprisingly easy to like. She wasn't mean, nor bitter, didn't fight people to get to the top, was perfectly happy with her life. That is, until Bradley ruins it and Hayden has to rescue her.

The drama came from Jules, the rising star in popularity and also vying for Gia's top seat. Honestly, I didn't understand Jules, she might as well have been not in the story at all for the amount of work on her back story but I suppose in helping guild Gia's moral compass, she had her uses. Along with Bec, Hayden's sister, who definitely uses her brother as bait and her own lack-of-social-standing to help Gia realise the error of her ways.

Hayden really stole the show. He was smart and gorgeous and obviously couldn't resist helping the damsel in distress; it is his influence of not judging people on their surface value that really has Gia questioning her life. Sure, a lot of it was cliche and overly dramatic but the basic moral of being a good person and being true to yourself and not for others is very relevant with today's social media/selfie culture.

Published 5th May 2015 by Harper Teen.

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