FALLING IN LOVE ISN’T COMPLICATED…UNLESS IT’S WITH YOUR BEST FRIEND.
A close, easygoing friendship can all change with just one kiss. Seventeen-year-old Remi Beaufort learns this the hard way when she plays a blindfolded kissing game at a party.
She thinks she’s kissing Jeremy, the totally hot basketball player she’s been crushing on. And the kiss…it’s amazing. Heart-stopping, world-changing, toe-curling. The kiss makes her forget about her overbearing mother, the next-door neighbor’s drama, and the probability that she’ll fail her senior year. The best kiss of her life makes all that fall away.
Until her blindfold falls off, and she realizes that instead of kissing her crush, she’s kissing Elijah, her best friend since third grade.
Though she manages to convince Elijah that he was kissing his girlfriend, Remi can’t get the thought of his lips on hers out of her head. As things between them grow more and more complicated–because it turns out her fantasizing about his mouth is more of a problem than it sounds–Remi has to make a choice: does she live the rest of her life loving her best friend in secret? Or does she tell the truth and risk ruining their friendship forever?
Title: What Friends Are For
Author: Sarah Sutton
Publication Date: January 14, 2020
Publisher: Golden Crown Publishing
I seriously debated between ratings because I really loved the ending, but felt the beginning was so subpar. In the end, I decided on 3.5 stars, and here’s why.
It was a bit of a slow start. The characters were trying to be established (I’ll get to this later) and the plot was being laid down, but we didn’t really get into it all until about 7 chapters in. Despite this slow start, I was still a bit intrigued so I kept reading.
About halfway through the book, I realized why I was feeling so torn with the plot. The first half of the book felt like it should have been the second half. The usual tension and high emotions that I feel like I usually see in YA contemporaries towards the end was at the beginning. But it continued until the end so it was all a bit contentious.
Now, back to the characters. Because of the odd start to the book, I feel like Remi and Elijah’s personalities shifted super hard within a few chapters. Remi was being super weird and negative and Elijah was being super lovey and then angry and then lovey.
Despite this, I really liked Elijah. He was sweet and thoughtful, even if he acted like a teenage boy sometimes. Remi, however, was not as likable. At the very beginning, we start to get a sense of her personality, but then it’s just kinda ripped away. Since the tension starts so soon in the book, I feel like the Remi we were supposed to get to know doesn’t really make an appearance. She just kinda all over the place with her emotions and thoughts and we don’t get a good sense of who she is.
As well, I feel like the book didn’t “accomplish” anything. Really, the point of most romance books is to get the two people together at the end, but usually, there is some other thing that is trying to be done. In this book, there were a few things that were trying to be accomplished (Remi is trying to pass her art class. Elijah is dealing with his family issues.), but I didn’t feel a sense of resolve at the end. Maybe it was just me, but I didn’t feel it and I really wish I would have.
Now, I feel like I’ve been writing a bunch of negatives so here are my positives. As far as best-friends-to-lovers goes, there were some really cute moments. As well, I really enjoyed the ending. In fact, I might have teared up a little. It was cute, hopeful, and tied up the relationship well. And it was interesting enough for me to read it in one sitting. I definitely wasn’t suffering through it.
Also, this book was pretty clean. There was almost no cursing and there were no sex scenes. Some good makeout scenes were definitely there, but nothing crazy. This book would be great for younger teen audiences.
Overall, I liked this book, just didn’t love it. It would be good for those who love best-friends-to-lovers tropes and who may or may not be failing a class.