September 30, 2014

Spencer Hill Contemporary




The Fine Art of Pretending
by Rachel Harris   


According to the guys at Fairfield Academy, there are two types of girls: the kind you hook up with, and the kind you're friends with. Seventeen-year-old Alyssa Reed is the second type. And she hates it. With just one year left to change her rank, she devises a plan to become the first type by homecoming, and she sets her sights on the perfect date-Justin Carter, Fairfield Academy's biggest hottie and most notorious player.

With 57 days until the dance, Aly launches Operation Sex Appeal and sheds her tomboy image. The only thing left is for Justin actually to notice her. Enter best friend Brandon Taylor, the school's second biggest hottie, and now Aly's pretend boyfriend. With his help, elevating from funny friend to tempting vixen is only a matter of time.

But when everything goes according to plan, the inevitable break up leaves their friendship in shambles, and Aly and Brandon with feelings they can't explain. And the fake couple discovers pretending can sometimes cost you the one thing you never expected to want.


"Shouldn't miss this!"  By Ashia 2 years ago

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THE FINE ART OF PRETENDING gives me all the feels! Because the characters are in their senior year, the language and words used by the author and concepts tackled are more...mature, so to speak, including scenes describing the characters making out. So, maybe younger readers shouldn't pick this up just yet.

Aly launches Operation Sex Appeal to shed her tomboy image and make herself more appealing and date-able. Her goal is to score a date with playboy Justin Carter to Homecoming, and for that, she needs the help of best friend Brandon Taylor to play her boyfriend. It was supposed to be only pretend, but when feelings get all too real, will anything be left of their friendship?

I like both Aly and Brandon, and Aly's and Brandon's friends are a hoot, especially Gabi, who has her own side romance. The progression of Aly and Brandon's relationship is believable, and I was on tenterhooks the entire time. I couldn't turn the pages fast enough! I wanted to know what's going to happen to them. I thought the situation between Aly and Justin was handled well, and I like Aly's courage in admitting her feelings to Justin.

If you like YA contemporary romance and friends-to-lovers theme, you shouldn't miss this book! I can't wait for the next book, The Natural History of Us, featuring Justin and Peyton. Peyton only has a small scene in this book, so maybe you should note that while reading.

"I have been waiting forever for this book."  By Ali Kiki 1 year ago

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I have been waiting forever for this book. “The Fine Art of Pretending” by Rachel Harris is fantastic. I love it. This book was so worth the wait. Ally is trying to give herself a makeover and become a casual girl rather than a commitment one. She wants to have some fun her senior year of high school and finally go on a casual date. Ally had a boyfriend but he dumped her for another girl. Now it is operation sex appeal and Ally’s goal is to land Justin for the homecoming dance.

I can’t emphasize enough how much I love Rachel Harris and her books. “The Fine Art of Pretending” is another fun book to read. I really enjoyed Ally and Brandon’s story. Brandon decides to help Ally with her operation sex appeal by pretending that they are hooking up casually. Brandon and Ally go on a couple of dates and have a few kisses but then they have their official non-official breakup and this ends up destroying both of them. Ally doesn’t realize she loves Brandon and Brandon doesn’t realize that he loves Ally. What is going to happen to these friends? Will they truly fall for each other or will they still end up being best friends? Will they lose each other forever?

This is definitely a high school generated novel. These kids are in their senior year of high school, so there is definitely some drama and some teenage feelings going on. I think this book is very relatable to teenagers. I really liked the storyline. I thought it was really light hearted and fun. This is definitely a quick read.

I really liked the characters. Ally is someone I can completely relate too and it isn’t just because we share a similar name. Aly is a nervous nelly and she worries about everything like me. Then she decides that she wants to make herself more attractive and try to become more confident. Honestly I feel like I have the same issues. I feel like I could be a whole lot more attractive than I am but I lack the confidence for it. Even as an adult I have that same issue. Confidence radiates plenty of sex appeal but it is owning that confidence that I have issues with sometimes too.

Brandon seems to be a bit of a playboy but as you get to know him, you find out that Brandon has a whole another side to him. Brandon doesn’t want to have a relationship because he thinks that everything ends when it comes to relationships. When he realizes that he likes Ally for more than a friend, he wants to ignore his feelings because he doesn’t want to screw up their friendship but because of the choices he makes, it ends up screwing up their friendship anyway. I think Brandon has sides to him that his friends don’t see so I hope that maybe he will start being himself more as time goes on. It will be great if he opens up more.

The other characters were fantastic. I have to say that Brandon and Aly have some really good friends. They wanted to see the two of them together for the most part but they are all pretty caring towards the two of them. It seemed to be a great group of friends. I wish my friends at that age were like that.

“The Fine Art of Pretending” was fantastic. I was so excited to get my eARC. I will definitely be buying a few copies of “The Fine Art of Pretending” because I have to give copies to friends not to mention have my own. That right there should be able to tell you what I truly think about this book. Definitely get your own copy!