Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Review: Red Girl, Blue Boy by Lauren Baratz-Logsted

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Red Girl, Blue Boy (If Only... #5)
    by: Lauren Baratz-Logsted

Publication Date: Oct. 20, 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Physical ARC received via the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 304 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 2/5 stars

Enjoy Red Girl, Blue Boy and the other standalone titles in Bloomsbury’s contemporary If Only romance line centered around an impossible problem: you always want what you can’t have!

Sixteen-year-old Katie and Drew really shouldn’t get along. After all, her father is the Republican nominee for President of the United States while his mother is at the top of the Democratic ticket. But when Katie and Drew are thrown together in a joint interview on a morning talk show, they can’t ignore the chemistry between them. With an entire nation tuned into and taking sides in your parents’ fight, and the knowledge that—ultimately—someone has to lose, how can you fall in love with the one person you’re supposed to hate?

This title in the If Only line is a frank and funny romance that shows how sparks fly when opposites attract.

When I first saw the premise for this book, I knew I had to have it! I absolutely loved the idea of Katie and Drew falling for one another, even though they really shouldn't because of the fact that their parents are running for opposing political parties. That definitely makes for some interesting tension! I really felt this book had so much potential, but unfortunately I had issues with the characters and the overall feel of the book.
Katie was a very hard character to like for me. Her personality is too naïve and incredibly over the top, which made it hard to actually find her believable. She has grown up on the campaign trail with her father and loves being in the limelight. However, she acted pretentious to me and I couldn't believe some of the things that actually came out of her mouth. Telling some crazy teen girls to "Unhand him!" was a bit farfetched, I don't care how naïve and sheltered she is. She still goes to high school, so surely she's learned how to interact with her peers. Her immaturity and naiveté  was just too much for me. As was her constant use of exclamations. I did like Drew though. Where Katie would do anything to be in the spotlight with her father, Drew hid from it. He doesn't want to be this famous figure at school. He just wants to be normal.
When Katie and Drew are slotted to go on this morning show together, Drew backs out, claiming he doesn't want to. However, Katie totally calls him on it, and the gauntlet has been thrown. While the two start out not particularly impressed with one another, they end up spending time together and find that the other isn't so bad, which leads to them falling for one another. Some of their scenes were cute, but Katie just grated on my nerves because she could ruin the best moments by bringing politics into them with the whole "My dad is going to win the election!"
I had some trouble with the pacing in this book. It took me awhile to get invested and it felt as if everything was very surface level, where I would have preferred to see more depth. The feel of the book was a bit younger than I'd like also. There is a scene in the beginning of the book where a cute guy acts interested in Katie and asks her out on a date. She agrees and he walks her to class and she is all "I think I have a boyfriend!" It just read as very juvenile for the age group and I almost felt it were more middle grade than young adult.
I really liked the whole bit about Katie and Drew having met one another once when they were younger and I really wish that were expanded upon more because it was cute.
Overall, this was not a book for me. The storyline is brilliant and as I said before it had a lot of potential, but I felt the problem lay with the actual execution, as well as the characterization.

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  1. This one sounds like it could have been really fun so its a shame it wasn't. It drives me nuts too when a book about teens doesn't fully grasp how teens act and reads younger because of that. Great review Jessica!

  2. Man, I'm annoyed just reading your review, Jess. Katie sounds very frustrating. I'm pretty sure I'd dislike her personality. Such a shame though since you mentioned it could have been a good story. :(
    Sorry this was disappointing, Jess. Hope your next book is better!

  3. Sorry to read this one wasn't as good as you were hoping. Katie doesn't sound like a character I would enjoy either, and pacing is a big thing for me. If the pacing isn't just right, it is so very hard to get into a book!

    Glad you gave it a try! :D

  4. I have been curious about this one because I loved Not in the Script which is part of the If Only series, but written by a different author. But I think I'll pass on this one. You should look into Not in the Script, though, if you haven't yet. That is great!

  5. I was really disappointed in this book, too. :(

    OMG. The "unhand him" moment. Katie was more than a little too much for me, but she did eventually grow on me. She was just really annoying for a lot of the novel. I also couldn't get over her ignorance. If she really spent so much time on the campaign trail, she should have known a lot more about the American people than she let on. Ughhhhhh.

    And then that ending? What even? I thought that it was just so abrupt that it ruined any potential for a clean up.

    Erin @ The Hardcover Lover


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