Monday, March 16, 2015

ARC Review: Kissing Ted Callahan (and Other Guys)

Okay I have to start by saying that I absolutely fell in love with this novel! Amy Spalding, you stole my heart with your amazingly addictive characters, witty banter and impossible situations that feel all too real! If you have not checked this one out yet, please do! It's well worth a read!

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:

After catching their bandmates in a compromising position, sixteen-year-old Los Angelenos Riley and Reid become painfully aware of the romance missing from their own lives. And so a pact is formed: they'll both try to make something happen with their respective crushes and document the experiences in a shared notebook.

While Reid struggles with the moral dilemma of adopting a dog to win over someone's heart, Riley tries to make progress with Ted Callahan, who she's been obsessed with forever-His floppy hair! His undeniable intelligence! But suddenly cute guys are popping up everywhere. How did she never notice them before?! With their love lives going from 0 to 60 in the blink of an eye, Riley and Reid realize the results of their pact may be more than they bargained for.

Kissing Ted Callahan (and Other Guys) is one of those books that takes you by surprise! I went into it not expecting much but really wow, I feel like I stumbled across a real GEM! I laughed, I giggled, I empathized and I was constantly expecting to be taken one way and would find myself taken in a totally different (and wonderful) direction!

The characters that Spalding creates are amazingly real and diverse and full of faults that make them so delicious and adorable and frustrating all at the same time. I want Riley and Reid to be my BFFs and seriously, the guys are all so unique and imperfect in their perfectly realistic ways. And the world building is perfect! I feel like I'm there walking the school halls, chatting in the parking lot, and in the garage during rehearsals creating, I mean avoiding awkward situations...

I will warn, for our younger readers, there is sex...brief, respectful and well done but also awkward and imperfect in a very realistically hilarious sort of way, but I do feel I should make you aware.

I love that this was written in a way where we really get two points of view - Riley (our main gal) with Passenger Manifest (aka diary/journal) entries by both Riley and Reid! The inner dialog of Riley is so perfect. Really she cracks me up and makes me want to laugh with her and yell at her at the same time. Riley really lives it up, but will her casual dating (Garrick, Milo and Ted - so many!) help or hurt her chances to really land her big fish - Ted Callahan? You would think with all these guys there would be some tortured love triangle but surprisingly there are no love triangles to be found! Hooray! 

Amy Spalding, I cannot wait to read more of your books!  Bravo!  What a complicated and yet so perfectly perfect spring read!