Just as Good as I Remembered: The Fine Art of Pretending Review

the fine art of pretending cover


Published: September 30th, 2014 by Spencer Hill Contemporary

Genre: Young Adult | Contemporary | Romance

Recommended to: those who like cute and fluffy friends to lovers romance

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According to the guys at Fairfield Academy, there are two types of girls: the kind you hook up with, and the kind you’re friends with. Seventeen-year-old Alyssa Reed is the second type. And she hates it. With just one year left to change her rank, she devises a plan to become the first type by homecoming, and she sets her sights on the perfect date—Justin Carter, Fairfield Academy’s biggest hottie and most notorious player.

With 57 days until the dance, Aly launches Operation Sex Appeal and sheds her tomboy image. The only thing left is for Justin actually to notice her. Enter best friend Brandon Taylor, the school’s second biggest hottie, and now Aly’s pretend boyfriend. With his help, elevating from “funny friend” to “tempting vixen” is only a matter of time.

But when everything goes according to plan, the inevitable “break up” leaves their friendship in shambles, and Aly and Brandon with feelings they can’t explain. And the fake couple discovers pretending can sometimes cost you the one thing you never expected to want.

RATING: ★★★★★

Before I start this review, let me just say that I have “book amnesia”. I can barely remember books I read years ago even when I absolutely loved it. Honestly, what leaves a lasting impression on me is not the plot but the way a book made me feel.

The Fine Art of Pretending was one of the books that had the honor to be included in my favorites (stand-alone) shelf but I couldn’t even remember any of it. All I know is that it was sweet and fluffy and I absolutely loved it. So despite reading this five years ago, it still felt like the first time.

I read The Fine Art of Pretending back when I wasn’t a critical reader so I was afraid that I wouldn’t feel the same way. Fortunately, even after all these years, it was as good as I remembered.

I guess one of the reasons why I loved this book is how I can relate to Aly. I also went through this phase. When I was young, I was a very awkward and shy kid. I didn’t have confidence and I wasn’t comfortable in my own skin. But books happened and the characters I read made me realize that I can try to change for the better. I read tips about fashion, socializing, and everything. Haha. Slowly, I started to love myself and I can say that I like who I am now. Although Aly initially did it to get noticed, I liked how in the end, she realized that she should do it for herself.

If you’re trash for sweet and fluffy contemporary romance like me — especially of the friends to lovers variety— I’m pretty sure you would love this. It was so cute that it had me rolling in my bed at 5 am. I really loved Brandon even though I wanted to smack his head sometimes. I also liked Justin but I didn’t feel too sorry for him because I already read his book. He definitely deserved a happy ever after too.

“I didn’t mean to fall for her, but I did. And in my fear of losing her, I did just that.”

There’s a big chance I’ll be reading this again in the next five years. I’m really glad I can never remember the books I read if enough time has passed. It always makes re-reading them a new experience.

What about you? Are you the type to remember the details of the book you read? Or are you like me who never retains anything? 😂

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