Monday, April 30, 2018

Bookish Boyfriends by Tiffany Schmidt

Merrilee Campbell, 16, thinks boys are better in books, chivalry is dead, and there’d be nothing more romantic than having just one guy woo her like the heroes in classic stories. She’s about to get the chance to test these daydreams when she, her best friend, Eliza, and her younger sister, Rory, transfer into Reginald R. Hero High, where all their fantasies come true—often with surprising consequences. 

Normally if I'm reading a YA novel it falls into the fantasy/dystopian category.  Lately I've been requesting YA novels of all sorts so I can do my due diligence selecting them for my library and make sure I am not ordering absolute rubbish to add to the collection.  With great power comes great responsibility after all....  I saw this one pop up on NetGalley and was intrigued.

When I first started reading this I was like "Our main character is some boy obsessed creature who is more obsessed with scoping out the campus hotties at her exclusive new school than actually doing anything else".  First day of school and she is immediately pining after mysterious broody boy under the shade tree.  I actually identified more with her more reserved best friend Eliza.  I actually had to stop myself and throw aside my middle aged reader prejudices and once I did I really started to enjoy this book.

Merilee rushes headlong into first love/first boyfriend and as the book progresses she becomes infinitely more likable when she acknowledges her self worth and decides to make the right decisions for her and stop worrying about everyone else.  Her first assignment for her English class is to read Romeo and Juliet.  At first she thinks Romeo is the perfect book boyfriend with his love of Juliet.  As her real life romance plays out, it parallels the famous Shakespeare play and her perceptions about her book boyfriend and her real one starts to change.  Meanwhile she meets Fielding, the son of the school headmaster, and he seems to have it out for her from day one.  Basically he's a jerk because of his preconceived notions of her and she is too proud to realize he might have some redeeming qualities after all.  Hmmm, sounds like another book I've read before....  Anyway, even though the book seemed a bit silly when it started, I thought it was a cute read.  Middle -aged me might have struggled a bit here and there with this book but 15 year old me would have given this a 5 paw rating no problem. I loved how it Merri's story echoed the classic books she was reading.  For some reason I had it in my head that somehow these book heroes were going to materialize in her life somehow but it is really just the boys in her life bearing an uncanny resemblance to those in the books.  The friendships in this book were great and there was a bit of a feminist streak in here that I appreciated as well.  Therefore, I'm going to go with 3 kitties-a good tail.


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