When Gia Montgomery’s boyfriend, Bradley, dumps her in the parking lot of her high school prom, she decides to do the unthinkable…convince the cute guy waiting to pick up his sister to pretend to be her boyfriend for the night. The task is simple: two hours, zero commitment, a few white lies.
The problem is that days after prom, she can’t stop thinking about her fill-in boyfriend. But can Gia turn her fake boyfriend into a real one without exposing her lie and possibly destroying her friendships and her newfound relationship?
Smartly observed and wonderfully romantic, Kasie West’s talent shines in this tale of one girl’s unexpected quest to find love…and possibly herself.
The Fill-In Boyfriend has been sitting on my shelves for at least a year and after seeing Kasie West’s books all over bookstagram I decided to finally give this book a try. Overall I liked it. It was a cute, short, romantic read that only took me a day to finish. The novel is told in the POV of Gia and the novel literally begins with her being dumped outside of her prom and it wasn’t the prettiest break-up.
From the very start of the novel I could tell what kind of person Gia was. She wasn’t so concerned with her break-up and was more worried about what her friends would think when she walked into prom solo. In other words, Gia is all about appearances, which is why she enlists a total stranger to pretend to be her now ex-boyfriend, Bradley. To be fair, the whole reason Gia feels she has to go to these extreme lengths instead of just telling her friends the truth about her break-up with Bradley is because this new girl, Jules, has infiltrated her friend group and has basically been implying that Bradley wasn’t real. Thus to prove Jules wrong Gia shows up to prom with the “fill-in Bradley,” who I’ll now refer to as FIB.
Gia reminded me a lot of Andie from The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson. They’re both very focused on keeping up appearances, they don’t stick with the same boyfriend for too long, and they like to keep their relationships with other people only on the surface level and never anything deeper than that. For this reason, I couldn’t help but compare the two novels and although I will say I like The Unexpected Everything better I still thought The Fill-In Boyfriend was a great novel and the plots were different enough that I think you can enjoy both without feeling like you’re reading the same book.
While The Fill-In Boyfriend heavily deals with the fact that Gia doesn’t real deal with her feelings it also focuses on her friendships and the tangled web of lies she weaves when she first hatches her plan with the FIB. Naturally, although this was only supposed to be a one night thing it quickly spirals out of control and along the way Gia found herself actually opening up to people in a way she hadn’t done before, not even with her family who’s just as closed off as she is.
Although I thought Gia’s whole “fake boyfriend” ploy was juvenile and Gia should’ve just manned up from the beginning and been honest I also hated Jules and kind of wanted to see Gia beat her at her own game. As I continued reading though I realized I kind of hated all of Gia’s friends and felt she was better off without them. However, I did fall in love with FIB and his little sister, Bec. They, along with Gia, made this novel for me and I really liked the chemistry between Gia and FIB.
Like I said, this book was really cute and a quick read. I recommend it if you’re look for something with a happy ending, some teen angst, and a lot of fluff.
“My preference is simple—you.”