The Fill In Boyfriend Review || Selfish Characters And A Little Cute

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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.

 

“We rarely find a depth by looking inside of ourselves for it. Depth is found in what we can learn from the people and things around us.

So I’ve slowly but surely been working my way through Kasie West’s books. In fact, you can definitely expect to see more of these Kasie West reviews coming out in the next few weeks on my blog haha. But I guess I’m starting to have mixed thoughts on her. Because the last book I read, Lucky in Love, was one of the best contemporaries I’ve read!! Love love!! But this one? Not so much.

The Fill-In Boyfriend, as you might guess by the title, follows the familiar fake dating trope. Alas, unlike To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, which is pretty much the best fake dating EVER, this book does not manage to pull it off well. From the start, it’s extremely weird and contrived–she needs a boyfriend so her friends believe she has a boyfriend? And there just *happens* to be a perfect fake boyfriend waiting in the parking lot? And he just happens (for some insane reason) to go along with her plot of going to prom with a complete stranger, donning the tux he just *happens* to have five minutes away at his house. Like, wtf? Anyways. Just move on past that setup to the actual story.

The main character Gia is one of the most irritating characters I’ve ever read about. (But not the most irritating! You can thank Anna from Anna and the French Kiss for being much worse than you and providing a standard to compare to, Gia!!!) She’s the typical media obsessed popular girl, who cares more about her image, particularly on social media, than anything real. She thinks herself above everyone, not recognizing people who she’s had several classes with because she’s above them (Which, not knowing their names actually isn’t too bad because she does to a big school and I totally understand that, but how can she not at least recognize their faces??), laughing at others.

Now, I should point out that Gia actually goes through some pretty amazing character growth. By the end, I could actually tolerate her haha. And I do think Kasie West was trying to send a message about how our society is too obsessed with social media, and I think that was done well! So Gia’s character growth definitely saved the book for me, prevented it from being a one star!

However, be warned. If you think Gia sounds annoying, all the friends, both hers and her Fill In Boyfriend (FIB)’s are TERRIBLE. They are shallow, manipulative, and cruel. They turn on their friends WAY too easily, and over the stupidest things. And they’re just jerks!

I think, like with Gia’s character growth, West is trying to juxtapose the disgustingly cruel friends with the actual good people in the story, and showing how Gia is able to rise above that. And that’s good! But, in order to get that message, you have to actually put up with and read through pages and pages of these b*tches and it was just getting on my last nerve.

So, selfish irritating main character, selfish irritating friends–what’s next? Oh yes–selfish irritating family. Seriously, Gia’s family, especially her older brother, was messed up! I was just so fed up with all the characters in this book was the problem. And since this was clearly a very character driven book, it was pretty hard to love it with such annoying characters!!

So like I said, the character growth was something that I really liked, and I actually found myself liking Gia by the end. FIB was pretty great too–nothing spectacular, not dreamy book boyfriend material, but just enough cute to make me smile.

★★.5 / 5

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10 thoughts on “The Fill In Boyfriend Review || Selfish Characters And A Little Cute

  1. Somebody recommended Kasie West to me, and after reading this review, I’m not exactly why???? I’m not a huge fan of romance novels and definitely not if said romance feels contrived. I’m sorry that you didn’t like this book – I hope you like your next book more. Thanks for a lovely review 🙂 Also, can I just say that I think your blog is super cute? The flower graphics are adorable!

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