My Fake Boyfriend is Better Than Yours
by Kristina Springer
2010 | 192 pages | Young Adult
My Fake Boyfriend is Better Than Yours is the story of Tori Barnes, who is about to start seventh grade. She thought she'd be doing so with her best friend, Sienna, by her side, but Sea went away for the whole summer, and for the last six weeks, she's been totally incommunicado. When Tori does finally run into her, Sienna is totally changed - she has a new haircut, a new tan, and she's bragging to every popular girl that she has a new boyfriend. Tori is convinced the boyfriend is a fake, but she doesn't want to be left out, either, so she creates a fake boyfriend of her own, and begins competing with Sienna, trying to prove that her boyfriend is more romantic and all-around better than Sienna's. The charade seems to be going well, until suddenly, the girls' new popular friends want them each to bring their boyfriend to the dance. Will Sienna prove that her boyfriend exists after all? How will Tori explain herself if Sienna finds out the truth?
I love Kristina Springer's books because they're so perfect for younger teens, and for kids who just aren't into darker stories. Their lightness and humor remind me a lot of Paula Danziger's books, which I read constantly when I was in middle school, and they're also good read-alikes for a lot of Disney-Hyperion's newer titles that I've been reviewing lately - Nerd Girls, Mission Unpopular, and Fetching. What I liked about this book in particular, is that it's not a romance at all, but a story of how friendships between girls can change when boys suddenly enter the mix. Springer tells this story with a wonderful sense of humor and a really believable 12-year-old voice, and when the girls finally do break down and tell each other the truth, the lesson come that friends always come before boyfriends real or imagined comes through loud and clear.
Also, this book has an awesome cover. The idea of packaging the fake boyfriend like a Ken doll and writing little bits of advertising for each of his many stellar boyfriend qualities is a brilliant idea, and the cover is completely eye-catching and appealing. Recommended to middle school girls whose friends have just started dating, and/or who like their books sweet, but also smart.
Kristina Springer is also the author of The Espressologist, and the forthcoming Just Your Average Princess, which will be published this Fall.
I borrowed My Fake Boyfriend is Better Than Yours from my local public library.