Fake It Till You Break It, by Jenn P. Nguyen
Publish Date: May 28, 2019
Published by: Swoon Reads
Genre: YA Contemporary/Romance
My Rating: ★★☆☆☆ (2 out of 5 stars)
**I received this as an egalley from the publisher through Edelweiss in return for an honest review.**
Mia and Jake have known each other their whole lives. They’ve endured summer vacations, Sunday brunches, even dentist visits together. Their mothers, who are best friends, are convinced that Mia and Jake would be the perfect couple, even though they can’t stand to be in the same room together.
After Mia’s mom turns away yet another cute boy, Mia and Jake decide they’ve have had enough. Together, they hatch a plan to get their moms off their backs. Permanently. All they have to do is pretend to date and then stage the worst breakup of all time—and then they’ll be free.
The only problem is, maybe Jake and Mia don’t hate each other as much as they once thought…
I wish I could say I enjoyed this book but sadly it was just not for me. The premise is what initially interested me, and the first chapter hooked me easily. I immediately loved Mia for her sardonic one-liners and wanted nothing more than to see these two characters bicker with each other while struggling to put on a facade of being in love for their mothers. However, this was not the case.
The supposed hatred for each other honestly felt kind of lacking, with the two of them doing more positive things for each other than anything. By the halfway point I was utterly bored and debating about putting it down. I don’t know if it was the characters or the sub-par plot, but I just could not care about it anymore. And when there was some extra drama to spice it up, it felt forced and not very fleshed out. Mia had a guy who suddenly became interested in her just as she started fake-dating Jake, and Jake had issues with a brother who left for a kind of pitiful reason. I wish there had been more depth given to Jake’s relationship with his brother, but honestly it kind of felt like we got a small serving of that plotline. There was potential to get some real emotions there, I thought, but the storyline just didn’t spend enough time fleshing out that relationship to really make it stick home.
The romance was cute at times, but again not always exciting. It was more of a gradual realization of what was already there, and even then it didn’t really feel all that wonderful or amazing. And the kissing scenes definitely left a lot to the imagination.
The first chapter of this book definitely had me hooked, and the pacing of the story was fast and quick to follow, but overall I just wasn’t impressed. I felt no connection to the characters or plotline and by the end I was just disappointed in it as a whole for not giving me more depth to the relationships that formed these characters’ lives.