Thursday, 17 May 2012
Thursday Thoughts: Book Review of The Boyfriend Thief by Shana Norris
Ever since Avery James's mother abandoned her family, Avery has become a control freak who plans her life out to the utmost degree. Her future after leaving school is no different - she'll work on a humanitarian program in Costa Rica this summer, and use this experience to help her get into college and medical school. Unfortunately, the program costs more cash than she's been able to save - so when her former friend Hannah Cohen offers her 500 dollars to steal her boyfriend Zac from her, Avery decides to go for it. She doesn't count on Zac being very different from the slacker she thought she knew, though...
I picked this up on the Kindle because I was looking for a contemporary read and it was only a couple of pounds. I haven't read anything of Norris's before and wasn't sure what to expect, but I was captivated right from the opening scene in which we see Avery's job working at a local hot dog joint, where she's dressed as a giant hot dog and having to dance for kids' entertainment. This kind of fun humour is sustained for the entire book, while Avery is a really strong character, Zac is a wonderful love interest - hyperactive, sweet, and with his own family issues. I was really rooting for them to end up together, and the romance between them developed brilliantly. I also thought there was a strong supporting cast with the adults, especially Avery's father and his new girlfriend, being realistically portrayed.
There were a couple of things which made me roll my eyes a bit - Avery's history with Hannah and her co-worker Elliott was shrouded in mystery slightly too much, with references every so often to a big event which made the three of them fall out. This started of as being intriguing but became irritating fairly quickly.
However, this definitely stands out as much, much better than the majority of similar books out there and I'll definitely keep an eye out for more by Shana Norris - her Troy High, a contemporary high school retelling of the Iliad, looks especially intriguing!
Strong recommendation, especially at current Kindle price of just £1.92 - grab it here!