Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Published by Harper Collins on July 1st 2014
Also by this author: The Distance Between Us, Pivot Point, Split Second, The Fill-In Boyfriend, P.S. I Like You, Lucky in Love, Listen to Your Heart, Snow in Love
Format: eBook (304 pages) • Source: Purchased
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For sixteen-year-old Charlotte Reynolds, aka Charlie, being raised by a single dad and three older brothers has its perks. She can outrun, outscore, and outwit every boy she knows—including her longtime neighbor and honorary fourth brother, Braden. But when it comes to being a girl, Charlie doesn't know the first thing about anything. So when she starts working at chichi boutique to pay off a speeding ticket, she finds herself in a strange new world of makeup, lacy skirts, and BeDazzlers. Even stranger, she's spending time with a boy who has never seen her tear it up in a pickup game.
To cope with the stress of faking her way through this new reality, Charlie seeks late-night refuge in her backyard, talking out her problems with Braden by the fence that separates them. But their Fence Chats can't solve Charlie's biggest problem: she's falling for Braden. Hard. She knows what it means to go for the win, but if spilling her secret means losing him for good, the stakes just got too high.
Kasie West = auto-buy. I said that after I read just one book by her (The Distance Between Us). When I read Pivot Point, that was further proven to me. Now that I’ve finally gotten around to this one, I can definitely confirm it again. She’s one of my favorites. Her writing style and character development is the best out there (in both her contemporary and paranormal books).
I loved the characters in this one from the minute I met them. Charlie, the “tomboy” main character, was poised to learn a lot about “being a girl” when she had to get a job at a boutique to pay back a speeding ticket. NOW, the sentence I just wrote is usually enough to turn me off from a book. I don’t like the tomboy trope, or the one that does anything to support gender norms in such a way. I don’t like using labels like that and/or assuming that because a girl like sports, she can’t wear makeup – and vice versa. This book does start out operating under those assumptions, but completely changes by the end. I wanted to shake Charlie a few times and get her to realize she was being closed-minded, but she was able to do it on her own. It was something I was able to look past and appreciate the character development by the end.
Now that the only real “negative” is out of the way, this book was the cuuuutest. Charlie starts out being very anti-girl, but slowly learns more about herself as she works in the shop. Her three brothers and one brother-like (*cough*) neighbor have helped raise her, along with her single father, so she cares much more about sports than makeup. I LOVED the family dynamics in this book. Between her brothers and her father, I wanted to jump inside the book and join their family. So cute. So protective. So heartwarming. Her dad trying to not be awkward about girly things was so adorable. Learning more about her mother and getting some heavier topics in the book really helped to make it well-rounded too.
The romance in this one was so great and very slow-burn. I was rooting for them from the first chapter. I feel like so many people (myself DEFINITELY included!) can relate to loving their childhood best friend/boy neighbor. The feelings in this book (and friendships) were just so real and relatable to me. I also do wish that the romance in the book happened a biiiit earlier. I was waiting and waiting for it to finally come to be, and I just wish there was more time with it! Overall, though, definite OTP status.