Sunday, September 4, 2016

Review: "The Boyfriend Bet" by Chris Cannon

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains multiple PDAs, after-school detentions, and gambling on the side. Warning: betting on a boyfriend is bad for your health. Zoe Cain knows that Grant Evertide is way out of her league. So naturally, she kisses him. Out of spite. Not only is Grant her brother’s number-one nemesis, but he has zero interest in being tied down to one girl. She’s shocked—and secretly thrilled—when they start spending more time together. Zoe’s brother claims Grant is trying to make her his “Ringer,” an oh-so-charming tradition where a popular guy dates a non-popular girl until he hooks up with her, then dumps her. Zoe threatens to neuter Grant with hedge clippers if he's lying but Grant swears he isn’t trying to trick her. Still, that doesn’t mean Grant is the commitment type—even if winning a bet is on the line.

My thanks to Entangled Teen Crush via Netgalley for providing me with a free review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Unfortunately, I did not enjoy this book as much as I'd hoped to. There were a few things I liked, and the potential was there, but with more attention to detail and some actual chemistry between the two main characters, it could have been a lot better.

The one area where this book really excelled is with the banter between Zoe and Grant. Chris Cannon wrote some great snarky and funny scenes between the two of them, which had me snort-laughing from time to time. I also really enjoyed Zoe's friendship with Delia. The two of them kind of reminded me of myself and my best friends in high school. These positives weren't enough to get me to fall in love with this book, though. 

The plot meandered a lot. There were things that happened or were mentioned that didn't serve a purpose, like the whole cake baking fundraiser thing. I liked that Zoe was working together with Delia on something, and that they seemed to take this project seriously, but in the end, there was no real reason for any of it to be in the book. 

There were also a lot of details that needed to be fleshed out more. For example, Zoe and Delia transfer to this exclusive private school in their junior year. If they really are "hicks" - the book's description, not mine - then how can their families afford it? Zoe's father and grandfather died in a car accident, so how can her mom and grandmother keep the farm running? Do they even live on a farm? That's the impression I was given, but then what do they grow? And why doesn't Zoe ever have to help out? Zoe's grandmother had some cute moments, but what does she do other than crochet and shoot stuff off the back porch? 

And as far as the connection between Zoe and Grant? I just couldn't buy into it, at all. I was more interested in Delia's growing relationship with Aiden than I was with whatever was going on with the two main characters, and you know that's a bad sign when the best friends are more interesting than the main players! I'll be honest, I didn't really like Grant all that much. I thought Zoe could do better. I didn't want them to end up together, and isn't that supposed to be the point of a romance novel?

My rating: 2.5 stars

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