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Monday, July 3, 2017

BBReview: "The New Guy (And Other Senior Year Distractions)" by Amy Spalding

Genre: Young Adult - Contemporary/Romance
Publisher: Poppy
Publishing Date: April 5th, 2016
Page Count: 320
Source: NetGalley
Format: Ebook

Description from Goodreads.com:
A ridiculously cute, formerly-famous new guy dropping into your life? It's practically every girl's dream.

But not Jules McCallister-Morgan's.

I realize that on paper I look like your standard type-A, neurotic, overachiever. And maybe I am. But I didn't get to be the editor of my school's long-revered newspaper by just showing up*. I have one main goal for my senior year-early acceptance into my first choice Ivy League college-and I will not be deterred by best friends, moms who think I could stand to "live a little," or boys.

At least, that was the plan before I knew about Alex Powell**.

And before Alex Powell betrayed me***.

I know what you're thinking: Calm down, Jules. But you don't understand. This stuff matters. This is my life. And I'm not going down without a fight.

----

* Okay, I sort of did. But it's a sore subject.

** I mean, I guess everyone knows about Alex Powell? Two years ago, you couldn't go anywhere without hearing about viral video boy band sensation Chaos 4 All. Two years ago, Alex Powell was famous.

***Some people think I'm overreacting. But this. Means. War.

Filled with romance, rivalry, and passive-aggressive dog walking, Amy Spalding delivers a hilariously relatable high school story that's sure to have you falling for The New Guy.
Review:
This was such a nice, refreshing read. I have been reading a lot of paranormal and dark YA's lately that it was so nice to read something that was so mundane lol. Instead of reading about extreme life altering events (finding out you have supernatural powers, your sister running away because of you, finding dead bodies, etc.,), I was reading about normal life altering events (first boyfriend, meeting a former boy band star, etc.,). Instead of dealing with hardcore questions (Is my life in danger? Is my sister alive? How do I defeat the bad guy?), it was normal stuff (Will I become the school paper editor? Will I get into college?). You all know I love my paranormal and dark mystery YA's, but sometimes you just need a break and this was a great pick for it.

I have been reading so much darkness that I have been having trouble sleeping, and when I did sleep I was having vivid nightmares. This was happening for about a week. Needless to say, I needed sleep. So, I looked through my NetGalley books to see what YA contemporary romances I still needed to review and found this gem. Alas, pleasant sleep!

Jules is kind of your average teenager. She is a high school senior, dealing with normal high school things, but there are some eccentric things about her as well. She is a HUGE overachiever and is desperately trying to get into the Ivy League school of her dreams, thus she puts school and extracurriculars over everything (including friends, unfortunately). She has two moms, lives in LA, and just recently caught the eye of a former boy-band member. Jules was such a cute character to get to know. She is so methodical, has no idea how to flirt, and has no poker face. Thus, she gets herself into quite a few embarrassing moments.

What I really loved about the story is that although you go in thinking it is going to be all about the romance, and that at the end the "moral of the story" will be that you always have time for finding love, but really the moral of the story was about relaxing and being true to yourself. Alex does play a big part in the story, but in the end he wasn't the focus. What Jules needed to learn is that she can try to do it all, but she can't do everything successfully. You have to manage what your priorities are and you have to know that everyone will still love you when you make mistakes or fail. Does she end up falling in love? Yes, but finally getting a boyfriend (or realizing that you do have time for a boyfriend with everything else going on in your life) wasn't the only thing Jules was dealing with. She was juggling her first boyfriend, trying to make editor, trying to keep the paper alive, trying to keep in touch with her friends, trying to get into an Ivy League, and trying to make her parents proud of her. Dealing with any one of those is a lot, but trying to multitask all of them altogether for one person is crazy. Trust me, i've dealt with a similar situation in college.

It was just a nice, refreshing, learning who you are story, and i'm glad I finally picked it up.

Overall:
This was such a good book pick to take a break from all the paranormal and dark YA's i've been reading lately. I needed something light and fun, and this was it. It is Jules senior year and on top of her normal worries, she is now trying to figure out her first relationship. It was so nice to deal with normal, mundane problems. I found Jules character to be very relatable and very well written. From the description you would think that this book would be all about the romance, but really it was about Jules learning that sometimes you will make mistakes and it is ok. Sometimes you need to reorganize your priorities and that is also ok. And, sometimes you need realize that no matter what, your friends and family will always love you. I definitely recommend picking this one up!

Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 4/5


**The books cover, description, and info was all found on Goodreads. A link back has been provided. All other work and ideas are of my own creation. This book was sent to me by the author in exchange for an honest review.**

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