Saturday, November 11, 2017

Saving It by Monica Murphy

Josh Evans and I have been best friends forever. He knows all my secrets, and I know all of his. So when he randomly asks me to help him lose his virginity, I sort of flip out. That’s a question that sends your mind to places you’ve seriously never considered before. Like, you know. Having sex. With your best friend. Except Josh doesn’t want to have sex with me—he wants me to help him find a girl. A nice girl who’s funny and smart and cute. Except he already knows a girl just like that...

Eden Sumner is my best friend. So of course she’d be the person to help me find my perfect match, so I can drop my V card before I head off to college. Except the more we search, the more I realize that maybe the right girl has been by my side all along. I don’t need Eden’s help in finding me a girl to love. I’m pretty sure I’m already in love with Eden. But now she thinks I’m only after one thing... with anyone but her.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book is what happens when American Pie meets Friends with Benefits. It contains two best friends, plenty of angst, and lots and lots of sex talk. Reading this might have you looking at your best friend in a different light!

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Entangled Teen

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

4 Stars overall.
5 Stars for actual young adult readers
3 stars for adult readers.

As a sucker for a page-turning young adult book, I won't lie by saying I didn't sit down and devour Saving It from page one until the end. However, I need to state I read it quickly for two reasons. One, I wanted to know where the novel was going to go, even knowing the ending destination. Two, I knew I better read feverishly so the plot itself didn't sway my overall enjoyment – meaning, if I paused, the novel would have given me pause. I will explain in the bulk of my review.

Best friends all through high school, Eden and Josh have had quite a few relationships, never once contemplating getting together. Josh is a virgin, never successfully sealing the deal in his past relationships, so he asks the one person who knows him better than anyone to help him pick the right girl. As you can guess, the plot pretty much goes on the path you'd expect, so I won't dive too deeply into the plot, as a way to avoid spoilers.

From the teen perspective, young adults will devour this book due to the content. From the adult perspective, adults will become frustrated, especially from a feminist standpoint. As a feminist, wincing at the list of girls, I read it from a perspective other than my own. At the same time, I wanted an adult voice in the book to offer advice these children so badly needed.

Authentic, Eden and Josh and the rest of the cast of characters do, in fact, act like actual teenagers. So I kept an open mind, remembering how I operated eons ago. Hormones fluctuating, irrational as the sector in the brain dealing with sound decision-making won't mature until the age of 25, peer pressure, and emotionally unsure why they feel as they do. So I applaud the author for writing characters who act/react/behave/sound as actual teenagers, instead of the adult voice of the writer.

In a nutshell, there isn't a whole lot going on with the plot that isn't in the blurb. The angst is a 'will-they, won't-they' tension, with added miscommunication, and a bunch of just waiting around until Eden and Josh decide to give it a try. It's not truly an evolution for the character development, but just the indecisive nature of teenagers (and their older counterparts).

If you're an adult like me, who adores the young adult genre, I'd suggest a sample. I enjoyed it, writing this review immediately, knowing if I took a few minutes, I'd spiral down the critique path and I refuse to go there. Do you know what I mean? In the now, it's awesome. Given five minutes of contemplation, the responsible adult in me wants to go round-up a roomful of teenagers and engage in a real chat.

FYI: I'm not a prudish adult against 'losing it/saving it' – it's the emotional impact of having an agenda and not caring 'who' you lose it to. On the flip side, feeling bad for the person chosen to fulfill an agenda. Virginity isn't a physical thing – it's a social construct with emotional impact.

If you're reading this review as a parent, I would highly recommend this to teenagers who need a dose of escapism/romance – not learning experience, but a naughty yet innocent read that accurately portrays exactly what teens are experiencing on a daily basis when it comes to acting on their sexual urges.

Young Adult age-range: 14+ due to swearing and sexual content.

Monica Murphy is the New York Times, USA Today and #1 international bestselling author of the One Week Girlfriend series, the Billionaire Bachelors and The Rules series. Her books have been translated in almost a dozen languages and has sold over one million copies worldwide. She is a traditionally published author with Bantam/Random House and Harper Collins/Avon, as well as an independently published author. She writes new adult, young adult and contemporary romance. She is also USA Today bestselling romance author Karen Erickson. She is a wife and a mother of three who lives with her family in central California on fourteen acres in the middle of nowhere, along with their one dog and too many cats. A self-confessed workaholic, when she’s not writing, she’s reading or hanging out with her husband and kids. She’s a firm believer in happy endings, though she will admit to putting her characters through many angst-filled moments before they finally get that hard won HEA.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Saving It by Monica Murphy to read and review.

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