Published on May 5, 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
When Gia Montgomery's boyfriend, Bradley, dumps her in the parking lot of her high school prom, she has to think fast. After all, she'd been telling her friends about him for months now. This was supposed to be the night she proved he existed. So when she sees a cute guy waiting to pick up his sister, she enlists his help. The task is simple: be her fill-in boyfriend—two hours, zero commitment, a few white lies. After that, she can win back the real Bradley.
The problem is that days after prom, it's not the real Bradley she's thinking about, but the stand-in. The one whose name she doesn't even know. But tracking him down doesn't mean they're done faking a relationship. Gia owes him a favor and his sister intends to see that he collects: his ex-girlfriend's graduation party—three hours, zero commitment, a few white lies.
Just when Gia begins to wonder if she could turn her fake boyfriend into a real one, Bradley comes waltzing back into her life, exposing her lie, and threatening to destroy her friendships and her new-found relationship.
To be honest, I wasn't expecting a lot from this book based on the premise. It didn't really sound like a book I would fall head over heels in love with.
But I did.
The Fill-In Boyfriend was such a cute, quick love story about two opposites who spontaneously come together after Gia gets dumped in the parking lot on her way to her senior prom. Gia and her group of friends are the text-book popular kids you hated in high school. They were bitches, snobby and clueless to the world around them, if they weren't the center of it. Gia had amazing character development through out the book. She started off as extremely self-absorbed and immature, but after problems she faced, she realized she wanted to make her life better and realize who she truly was as a person away from her sour group of friends. I really enjoyed how Gia ended up content with herself and genuinely happy.
Hayden and Bec were my favorite part of the book. Their sibling relationship was amazing and refreshing on how real they were. They kind of reminded me of me and my brother's relationship, in a way. I loved Hayden's geeky, yet swoony side and Bec's stubborn, opinionated personality. They really made this story for me.
Jules was my main issue with this book, though I know her character was necessary in order for Gia to evolve as a person. Gia only lied about Hayden because she was scared she was going to lose her friends if she showed up dateless, all because of a rumor Jules spread around. Now I know that they really wouldn't be her true friends if they left because of that, but you also need to this situation through the eyes of a seventeen year old. People's opinions of you are all that matters. Jules was the bitchy "frenemy" who was trying to steal Gia's best friends away from. Sounds like a pretty dumb subject, but unfortunately that really is how some teenage girls act nowadays. They fight and lie to get what they want-- in this case, it's friends. I felt kind of bad for Claire and Laney at the end. If only Gia would have realized that they really were her "true" friends, and not let Jules' get her so caught up in the fact that they weren't.
One of the subjects that West touched base on in her story is about how dependent people now are on technology. About how likes or views on Instagram or Twitter determines what kind of person you are: popular, important, loner. I know this is a subject that has been brought up a lot over the past few years, but I still feel like it's completely relevant. How many of you have almost wanted to quit your blog, Twitter or Instagram because it hasn't gotten as popular as you'd like in the time you wanted it to? I've honestly quit blogging and Twitter before a year ago, because I didn't feel like I was noticed or that my opinions didn't matter because no one ever responded to them. I know now, before reading this book, that that isn't what should matter when you're doing or talking about something that you enjoy. I think I'm going to do a discussion post on this later on to get more opinions and speak more in depth about that. Let me know your opinions on that.
The ONLY fault I have with this book is the ending. It was cute, yeah, but I didn't feel like I had enough closure with the characters. I wanted to see more of a make-up between Claire, Laney and Gia. Maybe even a small scene with Gia and Jules where they call a truce and try to be friends. And let's be honest, I just want more Hayden. Can I get a story that's just all him? Or a real life one Hayden? That'll suffice.
I really, really enjoyed this book. It made West an auto-buy author for me when it comes to cute contemporaries. I highly recommend if you have an afternoon to fly through a book and just be happy. I read this one sitting and it took me about 4 hours in total to read -- super quick.
5/5 of stars.