Wednesday, January 15, 2020

"Finding Mr. Better-Than-You" by Shani Petroff


REVIEW and GIVEAWAY
Finding Mr. Better-Than-You
by Shani Petroff

Finding Mr. Better-Than-You by Shani Petroff

Finding Mr. Better-Than-You by Shani Petroff is currently on tour with Xpresso Book Tours. The tour stops here today for my review, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


For more books by this author, please check out my blog post on Romeo and What's Her Name, my blog post on My New Crush Gave to Me, and my blog post on Airports, Exes, and Other Things I’m Over.

Description
A heartbroken teen, with the help of her best friends, goes on a quest to find the perfect boyfriend, and in the end learns that some things are more important than boys in Shani Petroff’s fun YA contemporary novel Finding Mr. Better-Than-You.
Camryn Roth has it all planned out: a perfect senior year with her friends and then it’s off to Columbia with her boyfriend, Marc. But the first week of school, everything falls apart. Not only does she not have enough extracurriculars for her dream school, her relationship falls to pieces when Marc publically dumps her!
With the help of her two best friends, Camryn is determined to pull her life back together. Step one, more extracurriculars. Step two, get over Marc and find someone better.
Shani Petroff’s newest rom-com is a love letter to friendship: to those who help you find your true self, stand by you no matter what, and support your plans even when they know they’re doomed.

Excerpt
“That is not art,” my boyfriend, Marc Gerber, said, pointing his paintbrush at my easel.
“You are just jealous,” I told him, studying my “masterpiece,” which admittedly looked like a big red splotch on a canvas. “People will be fighting over this one day.”
“Yeah,” our friend and Marc’s soccer buddy Todd Slocum said, leaning over to get a better look, “to get it out of their sight.”
Marc laughed. “Right? You take it. No, you take it. No, you take it,” he said, pretending to be two people arguing over my work.
“You know . . .” I dipped my brush into the red paint. “I think your painting may need a little sprucing up.”
I took a step toward him, wiggling my paintbrush at his project.
“You wouldn’t.” Marc’s eyes had a glint to them, almost daring me to go on. “Wouldn’t I?”
I inched closer. Marc’s piece was of a soccer goalie leaping for the ball to stop the other team from scoring. My boyfriend lived for soccer. “I think some red could spice it up.”
“Cam . . . ,” he said, unsure of what I was going to do next.
“Yes, Marc?”
I twirled the brush as if I was about to make my move.
Before I could, he wrapped his arms around me, nuzzling his head into my neck. He knew I was super ticklish there.
I squealed as I tried to pull away, accidentally painting the side of his cheek.
“Marc, Cam, stop it,” our art teacher, Ms. Winters, called out. “Do not make me speak to you again.”
“Sorry.” I tried to look remorseful despite the fact that my boyfriend had a gob of red paint dripping down his face. I hoped I at least got some points for containing my laughter.
“Me too,” Marc said.
Ms. Winters let out a sigh and handed him a cloth to wipe off the paint. Then she turned her attention to me.
“Didn’t you say you had a guidance counselor’s appointment this period? Why don’t you just go now?”
I still had time, but I wasn’t going to push it. She wanted me gone.
I was not exactly my art teacher’s favorite student. Yesterday alone, she’d snapped at me eight times to stop talking and focus on my painting. It was only the first week of school, but Ms. Winters was already all business, determined to keep the class on track. And, apparently, I wasn’t making that easy.
I started cleaning up my station.
“What’d you do?” Todd asked me.
“Huh?”
“To get called to guidance.”
I shook my head. “No idea.”
Marc still had a tiny bit of paint on his face. He looked so cute, but I decided to be a good girlfriend and help him out anyway. I wiped the smudge away with my thumb, and, after checking to make sure that Ms. Winters was facing the other direction, I gave him a light peck on the lips.
Todd rolled his eyes at me. “I bet that has something to do with it. They probably figured out you lied to get in this class just to be with Marc.”
I hadn’t lied. Not exactly. Okay, I had. But it was for a good reason. I was not going my whole senior year without a class with my boyfriend.
“You don’t think that’s it, do you?” I asked.
Todd shrugged, but it wasn’t his answer I was looking for. I wanted to know what Marc thought.
As if reading my mind, Marc squeezed my hand. “Relax, it’s probably nothing.”
I hoped he was right, but that word probably dug at me as I sat in the guidance counselor’s office.
Why did Todd have to get in my head? I hadn’t been nervous at all until he opened his mouth. But now I was semipetrified. I’d never been called to the office before—not guidance’s, not the principal’s, not even the nurse’s.
I couldn’t get in trouble: It was my senior year, and my transcript couldn’t afford it. It needed to stay perfect if I had any chance of getting into Columbia, and I really needed to get in.
I stared at the clock on the wall. I’d been waiting to see my guidance counselor, Ms. Vail, for twenty minutes. Much longer and last period would be over.
Finally her office door opened.
“Thanks again,” a tall, blondish girl said, walking out alongside Ms. Vail.
“No problem, Lissi.”
My ears perked up. This was the infamous Lissi Crandall? I craned my neck to get a better look. Everyone was talking about her. Not that I could blame them. It wasn’t every day Brooksvale High got a new student, let alone at the start of senior year. Lissi was practically a celebrity in our little Connecticut town. She’d started attending the school’s volleyball practices this summer, and from what I’d heard, she’d made quite the impression. Loved by some, hated by others—this latter group included one of my BFFs, Grace Kim.
“I’ll keep you posted,” Ms. Vail told her, then turned her attention toward me. “Camryn Roth?”
The sound of my name made Lissi’s face snap in my direction. Her eyebrows rose and her blue eyes widened. Did she know who I was?
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“What I like best about Petroff's stories, especially this one, is that it always feels like real and genuine teens. My teen self would have connected so much with Cam. […] Cute, witty, and a real page turner!” ~ Candace Robinson
“Petroff does an excellent job writing well rounded characters and realistic, not over the top, teenage angst and emotion. I recommend grabbing a copy of this story and prepare yourself to laugh, cringe, sigh, and reminisce about the days of high school and trying to choose a future for yourself at only 17. You won't be disappointed.” ~ Tina
“The perfect book for anyone who loves romcoms! […] A unique love story with laughter, tears, friendship, and self-realization. You’ll be hard press to ‘find a better’ book, #wink!” ~ Samantha Hastings
“I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this book! Fun and easy to read, it is also very relatable if you ever felt you lost yourself in a relationship. […] I think in this book I've found my new favourite trope: (re)discovering yourself and what you are capable of with the help of your amazingly loyal friends!” ~ Toni
“I loved Shani Petroff’s use of authentic teens, high school drama, best friends (and new friends) being forever and finding yourself. Highly recommended!” ~ bjneary

My Review
I received this book in return for an honest review.


By Lynda Dickson
Cam’s senior year of high school isn’t working out that great. First, her guidance counselor tells her she probably won’t get into her dream college, and then her boyfriend breaks up with her – very publicly. Good thing she has some great friends to help her through the tough times ahead. And a wonderful family. In fact, her life is starting to sound like one of her beloved rom-coms. But where’s her new love interest? After all, “The best way to get over an old guy is to find a new one.” And, in looking for Mr. Right, she might just end up finding herself.
I love how supportive Cam’s friends are, as are her parents and little sister. Even though Cam initially comes across as self-centered, she is actually a thoughtful friend and big sister. By the end of the story, she learns that some things are more important than having a boyfriend.
A cute, funny, easy-to-read story about friendship.

Some of My Favorite Lines
“… how come kicking a ball counted as an extracurricular, but reading—which was so much more mind opening—didn’t count?”
“Why couldn’t life be like a rom-com?”
“My rom-coms apparently didn’t get everything right. Not all pretty, popular cheerleaders were cruel.”
“Your rom-coms are practically how-to guides for you anyway, and this totally fits the bill. The main character always goes through something crappy, deals with a horrible guy, but then finds the real deal—true love and a happily-ever-after. Perfect, right?”
“… it was a long time ago. A footnote in my story. It doesn’t define me. If anything, it made me stronger.”
“… you can’t control how people treat you, but you can control how you react to it.”
“Contrary to your life motto, life isn’t a rom-com.”

About the Author
Shani Petroff
Shani Petroff is a writer living in New York City. She's the author of the Bedeviled series, which includes Daddy’s Little Angel, The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Dress, Careful What You Wish For, and Love Struck, and is the co-author of the Destined series, which includes Ash and Ultraviolet. She also writes for television news programs and several other venues. When she’s not locked in her apartment typing away, she spends a whole lot of time on books, boys, TV, daydreaming, and shopping online.

Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a print copy of Finding Mr. Better-Than-You by Shani Petroff (US only).

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4 comments:

  1. This sounds like a cute, charming read! Great review, Lynda!

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