Published by Random House LLC Source: Netgalley
Genres: Coming of Age, Contemporary, Contemporary Women, Fiction, Romance
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In the wealthy town of Sundale, Kelli Pinkins has hatched the perfect plan to capitalize on her sweet reputation. For a generous fee, she will be every trust-fund baby’s dream: a Friday-night alibi, the “girlfriend” or “BFF” that parents dream about. With college approaching in the fall, Kelli’s services are in demand more than ever, which means that her social life is nonexistent. But Kelli is A-okay with that. She’s raking in cash for school. Besides, relationships are tricky, and sometimes very messy. She’s rather be at home on Xbox live, anyway. Then the unexpected happens: She meets college stud Chase Maroney.
Chase isn’t like the preppy, privileged guys Kelli usually meets in Sundale. For starters, he’s twenty something, always wear black, and he shoots back one-liners as fast as she can dish them out. But Kelli’s attempts to drive Chase away falter when she realizes that he treats her like he really knows her, like he cares about knowing her. When Kelli finally gives in to the delicious kiss she’s been fighting for so long, she faces a tough decision: make Chase a real-life boyfriend and risk her heart…or keep her clients and lose her first true love.
So I have actually been pretty excited about the New Adult genre, mostly because I think it’s a great filler between YA and adult books, so I was pretty excited about reading this book. I also thought the concept was a pretty interesting one, someone who makes their whole life kind of revolve around being someone else’s alibi. I don’t know about you, but when I think alibi, I think crime or adultery, so it was cool that this was totally not what the “alibis” were being used to cover up. If they alibis had been, I don’t think it would have been as good of a book.
Kelli was a pretty okay character, I don’t think I liked her as much as I liked her counterpart, Chase. I may have been too knit picky when it came to her, but at the end of the day I still liked and enjoyed her. Part of my problem with her was early on in the book she’s in the shower and a guy walks in and she is totally confident and sure of her body, and then it felt like for the rest of the book she was completely not confident and constantly covering up. It felt contradictory, which took me a while to get over. Also I think the author almost made too much of a point of saying she was a good girl and reminding the reader over and over that she went to church, it got a tad bit redundant. On the plus sides for Kelli, I thought she was a sweet, good friend, and in general a good person. I think a lot of women can relate with her, it was so much easier for her to stay at home and hide behind her Xbox than go out into the real world and have to put herself out there, something I think everyone has felt at least once in their lives. It was nice watching the evolution of her character.
As for Chase, her male counterpart, I liked him a lot. He’s such a good sport when Kelli pulls pranks on him, or does/says something that would throw most people off. He’s in general just a really nice guy, early on he is willing to drop everything to check up on a girl he doesn’t even know that well. He has this really tragic backstory that really shows the kind of person he is, and I could see how everyone would want to be with or be friends with Chase, he’s just a good person at heart. He’s also a little emotionally and romantically stunted because of his past (it’s totally understandable in context) and so it’s really nice watching him open up and put himself out there to Kelli. They really do grow together as people really nicely.
My biggest criticism of the book is that even though the characters are a little older, I think Kelli is 18 and Chase is 21, the book still reads as upper YA to me. It’s very PG, which is fine as long as it keeps my interest, and my problem was there were a lot of scenes in the book where Kelli and Chase make out. Like over and over. For pages and pages it felt like. It was cute and worked for them in the beginning of their relationship, and then it happened so much that I just started skipping over the make out scenes because I didn’t feel like they held anything important for the characters and didn’t draw me in. Other than that I felt like the characters were good together, they had good chemistry, and the book did exactly what I wanted it to do, take me away to another place for a few hours. I would recommend it to anyone who like romances that more on the upper YA side, it’s a good read.