20/06/2014

Review: Biggest Flirts {Jennifer Echols}


★★★☆☆
Written by Jennifer Echols
Amazon | Book Depository 

Tia's a girl who wants to have fun. She's worked hard to earn her reputation as the life of the party and she's ready for a carefree year with no strings. But Will's the kind of guy who wants something serious, and when Tia makes it clear she isn't interested, it drives him into the arms of another girl. Still, the two still can't seem to stay away from each other, and when they get voted Biggest Flirts things get more than a little awkward; their chemistry is beginning to jeopardise Will's new relationship. What started as flirting, is about to get very complicated.
 
Biggest Flirts isn't a novel that's going to make you reconsider the meaning of life, or ponder the great mysteries of the world. But it is a novel that'll make you smile, and leave you with that warm, satisfied feeling in your heart.

Tia is a great protagonist and different to a lot of YA heroines; she embraces her sexuality wholeheartedly and I liked that she didn't slut-shame or judge other people. I thought that was a great attitude and really sent a nice message that people need to stop villainising young women who take charge of their sexuality.

Will was quite unique for a love interest. I found he embodied a lot of the traits we usually see in female characters (with Tia adopting traits that are more male-dominated, in literature). It was a nice role reversal and really shattered cliché stereotypes.

Both of these characters had their issues, which played significant parts in the story and stopped it from being solely a romance novel. For Will, it was his inability to fit in and come to terms with the fact that he isn't the same person he was in his old school; that his life had changed and so had he. He questioned if he ever knew his true self and I thought that kind of existential crisis was really realistic for a teenager to go through.

For Tia, her problems stemmed from her family situation; her sisters, who she's had no contact with in years, have all been left broken-hearted with kids to raise. And her father works 24/7 to try and support everyone. Family is a huge part of Tia's life, in that it has affected her ability to handle certain things or even comprehend certain emotions, but it's also not something that's really present. And I think that's a big issue for Tia: her family is a little broken and, by extension, so is she.

The chemistry between Will and Tia really did shine and their exchanges made me smirk, grin and then laugh out loud. It was nice to follow their conversations, from witty exchanges to more serious and meaningful discussions. Their growth was really interesting to read about and I felt as though they developed nicely as a 'couple' and that caused them to evolve a lot as individuals.

The writing could be a little basic at times, and slightly immature, so occasionally I felt the 'am I told old for this?' vibe. There was also the matter of this being quite a simplistic story, with a lot of predictability. Despite that, this is a story that you can cuddle up to, taking comfort in the knowledge that these characters will get to where they need to go, and that they'll offer you plenty of smiles and plenty of swoon along the way.

"I'm not sure I like this. It has a slut-shaming flavour, like they really wanted to give me Biggest Ho."

 

Allie has planned out a trio of marvellous desserts for Valentine's weekend. She'll be baking up a storm for love day! And that's not just a metaphor, because when she bakes, the kitchen ends up looking like it's been hit by a hurricane. But hey, the sugar makes the clean-up all worth while.
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20 comments:

  1. I like the idea that this reversed the usual stereotypes and had a female character who isn't ashamed or embarrassed by her sexuality - and a YA book with no slut-shaming!!! I worry that this is a little too simplistic and predictable for me, those are the worst kind of romance books for me. I think I'd feel too old for it as well, so thanks for the advanced warning on that. It sounds like a cute, easy read but it's not one I will be rushing to get to any time soon. Thanks for the honest review :)

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    1. It was so nice to read about a girl who embraced her sexuality. Also, none of the other characters really seemed to slut-shame ever, so it was great all around. They joked about it, but nobody actually seemed to judge anyone, which was wonderful to see in YA because normally it's slut-shame central

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  2. haha, I like that quote. It's cool the male and female MC's kind of "switched" roles that they normally have in novels.

    -Lauren

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    1. LOL it did make me laugh. Actually, that entire passage was pretty much hilarious!

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  3. I've been looking forward to this one for a while now. I understand what you said with the simplicity. I find the Echols' work is sometimes like that but simplicity when done right can work. Great review!

    -Mari

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    1. This is the first book I've read of hers (I think? I can't remember). If that's her style though, that's her style. I still enjoyed this and wouldn't say I've never read another book of hers again, but I know now that some of them may be a little to simplistic for me. I'm finding the same probably with Colasanti's books.

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  4. Awww this book sounds totally cute and I love these heart warming reads. Lovely review Allie!

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    1. Me too! I'm a big fan of novels that make you smile, and that you can just relax with :)

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  5. Eeep! I'm glad Tia is different and I can't wait to meet her. AND YAAASS!! The MCs both sound like non-stereotypical and I'm so glad to hear that. And whoop for character growth! Then again.. I do get why you could have gotten the "am I too old for this" vibe and YA has a lot of predictability *shrug* I'm glad that you enjoyed this as a whole and I can't wait to enjoy this on a warm summer night :)

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    1. It was so niiiiice to see the roles switched and have Tia almost adopt the role of 'player' (hate that word). This book likes to shoot them stereotypes down! Plus it showed a lot of male/female friendships too, which was great to see. Yay for characters of the opposite sex who can actually be mates

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  6. It's the slightly maybe possibly juvenile writing that would worry me...buuut, it sounds cute and fluffy!! I kind of want to try this now! Is there banter witty though? I LOVE WITTY BANTER.

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    1. The writing wasn't bad by any means but, yeah, it just wasn't prose of epic levels. Then again, the plot was pretty simple too, so I guess I expected that. It didn't ruin things for me or anything, it just meant that I couldn't enjoy it as much because I found myself feeling a bit too 'mature' for it :P

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  7. This one is on my summer list, but the writing does make me a little leery, but a quick summer read is just what I need
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

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    1. That's exactly what this is - a quick, summer read. Perfect for the beach or a lazy summer day. Sometimes you need a short & simple read!

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  8. I'm all down for a fun and simplistic book every now and then so I think this one would be perfect for me! I've been seeing some hype surrounding this book, especially with the contemporary lovers. Thanks for sharing your awesome review! :D

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    1. Sometimes a fun book is necessary – especially in summer. I need quick and light reads I can pick up and put down easily, without having to worry about forgetting the plot or all the complex stories going on!

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  9. "they developed nicely as a 'couple' and that caused them to evolve a lot as individuals" I like the sound of that! Even if they're not blow-you-away, predictable books and "the knowledge that these characters will get to where they need to go" can be really refreshing!

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    1. Definitely. I could see a lot of things coming, but with a book like this I think you're supposed to. It's one of those books that's meant to leave you feeling safe and comforted because you know how it's all going to play out and you know there'll be a HEA

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  10. I sometimes feel that "I'm too old vibe" too with some contemporary YA novels, too, but than they're so cute, it's hard to resist, haha. It's good to hear the main couple had good chemistry! Might save this one for a when I'm in need to cute fluff! Thanks for the review!

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    1. LOL. Run away from the cuteness, Cyn! Run aaaawaaay. Actually, go back to the cuteness! Everyone needs a light read once in a while :)

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