Kasie West has quite a few books out and as far as I can tell, they are all for young adult/teenage audience… Yet, when I tried to find out something more about the writer, it wasn’t that easy. She likes to eat Junior Mints, she has bachelor in a subject no related to writing and she has children – yes, she has given all the information we need, in order to realize, how great of a writer she is.
This was the first book I read from her and it definitely did set my mind on what kind of books exactly she writes, don’t get me wrong, it’s not like those are bad, it’s just that they’re not for adults.
The Fill-In Boyfriend is a story about the most popular girl in school – Gia, she is and has everything anyone would like, yet it just so happens that some things have started to crumble in her life, for example, her friendship. Jules is quite new to the group, yet she does all to make Gia’s friends believe that she isn’t that good of a friend to them. What more – that Gia is a liar and Bradley – her boyfriend she’s been bragging about, doesn’t exist. Gia is eager to prove to Jules and the rest of the friends that Bradley is very real, when she asks him to attend a school dance together with him. Unfortunately Bradley brakes up with Gia right before the dance and the girl is left devastated – not because she lost her love, but because her friends will now believe Jules. What to do?
This book is very silly and I would classify it as teenager book, I remember that I read something (dreamy) like this, when I was about thirteen years old, but I have grown out of those fast novels with predictable endings and so much cheesiness, which is the reason that I disliked this book.
Main idea that drives this book is friendship and lies. One has to admit, that lying lately is a big topic in young adult books and I feel a bit like they have made an elephant out of a fly. Who hasn’t lied to their friends? Who hasn’t forgiven friends for lying? Seriously? There’s not much drama to make out of lying, yet so many authors do now. It’s ridiculous. Besides, very often, the fear of being caught lying in these books, is fought with… yes, lies. What? Does that even make sense?
The story was as one would expect – predictable and not very well written. The writing was repetitive and simple, it also didn’t really make the connection, meaning that I did read the words and understood what’s happening and what they mean, but the writing didn’t suck me into the book and didn’t help with the emotional attachment to events and characters in the book. It somehow reminded me a lot of Gossip Girl. Sure, the beginning is not exactly the same and the situations are also a bit different, but the high class, the first world problems and the wise, cute Serena and the simple Dan with his loving and open relationship with his sister… sorry, I meant Gia and Hayden, oh and his sister Bec… Even families reminded me of the families of the characters in Gossip Girl!
I haven’t seen the whole series and am not planing to, but I hated that the characters to me seemed more of the TV series than the author’s making. It almost seemed like she didn’t even describe them, because the auditorium for this book is the same as for Gossip Girl and they will already know the characters and the setting.
But alright, unfortunate similarities in story, not too good of a writing, so maybe there was an amazing twist or epic ending?
There were no real twists (just some parts, where I was sure that, if I would have been in those situations, I would have punched Hayden/Bradley/Brother etc., while Gia didn’t) and as for ending, it just wasn’t there. I wanted to slap the author. She might have as well stopped in a middle sentence there, because this book didn’t have ending. The moment you think that we still have some few pages left, you flip the page and are facing ‘Acknowledgements’ and never find out, what exactly happens – so how does the book end?
I don’t want to spoil for those who do plan to read it, but there was one tiny thing that I did like about what the ending suggested. But as we didn’t get it developed, I have no idea, if my assumptions are correct.
This book was a really fast read that didn’t leave a professional impression and I will most likely forget it soon too. It received one star from me on my goodreads page (a bit harsh, yes, but I hate when people say that ‘one star is for having the idea, two for writing it, so I can minimum give three stars, because it was so much work to get it published too’ – that’s bullshit) and I would suggest that teens who love dreaming and romances would read it. It’s nice for young girls, but if you are an adult or a young adult, read it only, if you really, really love cheesy love stories and cliches.