Author: Terra Elan McVoy
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: May 1st, 2012
Interest: Blog Tour / Contemporary
Source: Finished copy received for tour from Literary Logistics / Publisher
Summary (From Goodreads): Charlotte and Oliver have been friends forever. She knows that he, Abe, and Trip consider her to be one of the guys, and she likes it that way. She likes being the friend who keeps them all together. Likes offering a girl’s perspective on their love lives. Likes being the behind-the-scenes wordsmith who writes all the lyrics for the boys’ band. Char has a house full of stepsisters and a past full of backstabbing (female) ex-best friends, so for her, being friends with boys is refreshingly drama-free…until it isn’t any more.
When a new boy enters the scene and makes Char feel like, well, a total girl…and two of her other friends have a falling out that may or may not be related to one of them deciding he possibly wants to be more than friends with Char…being friends with all these boys suddenly becomes a lot more complicated.
When I was invited to be part of this blog tour I was really excited because the premise for Being Friends with Boys sounds like a fun summer read. Plus, it’s contemporary which I love, and I haven’t read any of Terra Elan McVoy’s books yet. It’s kind of awkward though when I end up not liking the book as much as I hoped to when I’m featuring it as part of a blog tour. I’ve decided that breaking this post down into a likes/dislikes will probably work best for my review.
What I Liked:
- I really like that Terra Elan McVoy decided to write a book about a girl with mostly guy friends because I always found it easier to be friends with guys, and many of the girls in my classes have mentioned this as well.
- McVoy wrote a pretty accurate representation of what hanging out with guys is like. Charlotte is part of the group, and loves telling jokes with them and watching them play video games, but she also sometimes feels out of place. She’s managing their band and writing the lyrics, but then she’s also the one to organize them and get snacks ready for practice. She’s riding that line between being one of the guys and being “Suzy homemaker” which she’s mentioned not wanting to be, or something along those lines.
- I like that Char and Trip pass a notebook back and forth to one another about their day, gossip, music, feelings, etc. I had a notebook with my best friend, but I never considered having one with one of my guy friends. I don’t think I really had any guy friends who were the notebook type though either.
- A big part of the story is Charlotte figuring out who she is and where she fits in. Her mom left their family years ago, her sister is away at college, she’s trying to get to know her stepsisters better, and it feels like the band is falling apart. Charlotte has to learn that she can’t always make everyone happy and sometimes it’s more important to do what’s right for her.
What I Didn’t Like:
- From the beginning of Being Friends with Boys it felt like there was a back story I was missing or like this is the sequel to another book about Charlotte and the guys. Readers are instantly thrown into the drama of Trip leaving the band even though we have no real reason why. This sort of expected understanding happened often in the beginning of the book which left me confused and re-reading pages to figure out what I was missing. To top it off, the chapters are incredibly long which almost always irks me.
- I like a book with drama, but there’s so much drama wrapped into this book that it started to take away from the real meat of the story which is Charlotte’s friendship with Oliver and Trip. At least I think that’s supposed to be the main focus. McVoy wound in all of this extra drama about Charlotte and her (ex?) best friend Lish, her sister being away at college, and her mom not being around anymore. Through most of the book it felt like I was reading a timeline of events that keep happening instead of getting a real in-depth story.
- The length. Being Friends with Boys is 360 pages long and it should have been 100 pages shorter. If there was more in-depth story and less timeline and telling so much of happening instead of showing what happens, then I think the story could have been shorter. Even if it wasn’t shorter, I think I would have enjoyed it more. The writing is really what turned me away from the book.
- The ending. After all of this drama, so much was left with loose strings.
Make sure to check out the main page of the blog tour so you can read other reviews of Being Friends with Boys. I’m only one opinion, and many of the other bloggers participating in the tour really liked Terra Elan McVoy’s newest book.