Who among us hasn’t had a fake Significant Other at some point in our lives?
Or at least thought about it. 😉
My freshman year of college, I told two friends about an unwanted, frustratingly persistent suitor of mine, and they each offered to help.
The first one—let’s call him Marshall—said, “I can pretend to be your brother and tell him to leave you the hell alone.”
The second, named Elliot, replied, “Her brother? You two look nothing alike.”
“Well, adopted or step-brother,” Marshall clarified.
Elliot laughed. “It makes more sense to pretend to be her boyfriend. I’ll do it. Then that guy will get the picture.”
I thanked them for their suggestions, but took care of Mr. Suitor in my own way, which basically involved avoiding him until I actually had a boyfriend a few months later.**
That guy, the real boyfriend, turned out to be Marshall—or, as he’s better known around this part of the Internet, Mr. AMB. Thankfully, I never tried to pass him off as my sibling. That would’ve been an uncomfortable lie to explain away.
These were the memories that came to mind as I read Kasie West’s latest Young Adult novel, The Fill-In Boyfriend. In this story, 17-year-old Gia Montgomery needs a date after her boyfriend of two months dumps her in the parking lot outside of the prom. She approaches the first guy she sees and begs him to pretend to be her boyfriend. He agrees. The ending is obvious, Gia and the “fill-in” boyfriend get together eventually, but how they get there is fun to witness.
The main characters are likeable, the story is cute, and the writing is funny and fast-paced. It’s ideal for both younger readers who may see a part of themselves in Gia and for older folks (like me) who are looking for an entertaining escape from adult life.
I am grateful to Stephanie from Stephanie’s Book Reviews for recommending this novel. It was as much fun as she said it would be.
*I ran this post by Mr. AMB to make sure he didn’t mind if I shared this story from our past. He was fine with it, but wanted to add: “In my defense, I wasn’t bold enough to offer to pretend to play the role I wanted to have. Besides, what better way to attract a bookish girl than to be painfully awkward and shy? That method worked just fine for Mr. Darcy.”
**I wasn’t allowed to date–I was raised in a pretty strict household–but my parents ended up liking him. Phew.