Book Review: How to Keep a Boy From Kissing You by Tara Eglington

Title: How to Keep a Boy From Kissing You
Author: Tara Eglington
Genre: contemporary romance; chick lit
Publisher: Angus&Robertson (an imprint of HarperCollins)
Publication Date: 1st February 2013
Pages: 384
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis (goodreads):
Sweet sixteen and never been kissed – and that′s the way Aurora Skye wants it to be. She′s too busy finding Potential Princes ™ for her two best friends, counselling her sensitive New Age dad and dealing with the unexpected return of her long-absent mum. But always in the background there′s Hayden Paris, the boy next door, the bane of Aurora′s life. Smart, funny, and always around to see her at her worst, he ′gets′ her like no-one else … and that′s what makes him so infuriating.

When Aurora and Hayden are coerced into the lead roles in the school production of Much Ado About Nothing, things can only get worse. How is Aurora going to save her first kiss for the secret admirer who wooed her with poetry and a spectacular bunch of flowers on Valentine′s Day if she doesn′t know who he is and she′s obligated to lock lips with Hayden in the play′s final dramatic clinch?

From talented debut YA author Tara Eglington, this is a page-turning, funny and delicious romp of a book that both kissing and non-kissing teenage girls will adore.

My Review:

For Aurora Skye, romance is one of the most important things in life. And first kisses should be reserved for a worthy Prince. Armed with strategies and avoidance techniques, Aurora wants to save her first kiss for her true love (she even engages stealthy spy like operations to stop unwanted advances) even when it leads her into some rather embarrassing situations.

With Hayden Paris, a boy-next-door who is the bane of Aurora’s existence  and a New Age Dad (NAD) who seems to think that Aurora and Hayden are a couple, Aurora’s Find a Prince Program™ has some obstacles to overcome. But like her Disney Princess namesake, Aurora is willing to go the extra mile to make sure that True Love’s first kiss prevails.

This book is adorable! It reminded me very much of a Disney Channel movie (and in a good way. I love those!) crossed with the film Clueless. Everything from the slightly eccentric dance teacher to the girls doing the glide-by on the first day of school – I could picture Aurora and her friends’ antics so very clearly in my mind. With all the books about teenagers saving the world it was refreshing to read a book that reminded me of my own school years where first kisses were regarded as sacred. Aurora is a very sweet leading lady. She’s somewhat melodramatic and confused but her heart is in the right place – I could tell that she really did have her friend’s best interests at heart no matter what the situation. And what I loved most about her is that I saw so much of myself about her. Trying to advise others with no practical experience to her name? She’s a character that I think a lot of girls could relate to.

Much Ado About Nothing is one of the few Shakespeare plays that I am completely unfamiliar with and despite the play being central to the development of Aurora and Hayden’s friendship and relationship, this book does a great job of not requiring any previous knowledge of Shakespeare’s work. And as a former drama nut myself, I appreciated the dynamics of just what it takes to put on a school play (although how that managed to put in on in a matter of weeks? I have no idea how they achieved that!).

This is one of those books where the characters are teenagers. And they’re believable teens – not seventeen year olds going on forty. Whilst I found Hayden a little bland I found myself loving him for Aurora. The supporting characters were fun and I liked how they contrasted the leads but also the other minor players.

How to Keep a Boy From Kissing You is an enjoyable and entertaining read by a debut Aussie author. The characters are adorable. Whilst the plot was somewhat predictable this is definitely one of those books that you read not for the destination but for the quirky and fun journey. I’m delighted to see that this is not the last of Aurora Skye. How to Convince a Boy to Kiss You will be published late in 2013.

 

Thanks to The Reading Room and HarperCollins Australia for providing me with a copy to review.

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository 


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7 thoughts on “Book Review: How to Keep a Boy From Kissing You by Tara Eglington

  1. I have never heard of this book but it does sound adorable and I love the title. Going by your review, I should read it sometime soon. Great review, by the way.

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