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The Feeling of Falling in Love
Cover of The Feeling of Falling in Love
The Feeling of Falling in Love
From the bestselling author of I Wish You All the Best, comes a new kind of love story, about the bad decisions we sometimes make... and the people who help get us back on the right path. Perfect for...
From the bestselling author of I Wish You All the Best, comes a new kind of love story, about the bad decisions we sometimes make... and the people who help get us back on the right path. Perfect for...
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  • From the bestselling author of I Wish You All the Best, comes a new kind of love story, about the bad decisions we sometimes make... and the people who help get us back on the right path.

    Perfect for fans of Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston and What If It's Us by Adam Silvera and Becky Albertalli.

    Just days before spring break, Neil Kearney is set to fly across the country with his childhood friend (and current friend-with-benefits) Josh, to attend his brother's wedding—until Josh tells Neil that he's in love with him and Neil doesn't return the sentiment.

    With Josh still attending the wedding, Neil needs to find a new date to bring along. And, almost against his will, roommate Wyatt is drafted.

    At first, Wyatt (correctly) thinks Neil is acting like a jerk. But when they get to LA, Wyatt sees a little more of where it's coming from. Slowly, Neil and Wyatt begin to understand one another... and maybe, just maybe, fall in love for the first time.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    June 27, 2022
    Two white teens’ fake dating ploy prompts convoluted feelings in Deaver’s (The Ghosts We Keep) angsty romance. When 16-year-old transmasculine Neil Kearney’s friend-with-benefits, Josh, confesses his love, Neil panics. To end their arrangement, Neil claims he’s dating aspiring musician Wyatt, his roommate at their North Carolina boarding school. But Josh still plans to attend Neil’s older brother’s wedding back home in Beverly Hills. Stressed about Josh uncovering his lie at the event, Neil begs Wyatt (who is queer and “not quite ready to have those conversations. Even with myself,” when prompted for additional labels) to accompany him. Though he initially declines, Wyatt eventually agrees to attend—in exchange for Neil promising to set up an audition with his record producer brother. During the weeklong wedding festivities, Neil manages jealousy over Josh potentially dating another boy and annoyance at his family’s fixation on his physical appearance as he gradually realizes that he might be falling for his fake boyfriend. While Wyatt’s seemingly unending patience with Neil’s occasionally grating brashness sometimes reads as overly idealized, Deaver details Neil’s challenges navigating body dysmorphia and transphobia, and his slowly dawning self-awareness toward his treatment of others, with empathy. Ages 14–up. Agent: Lauren Abramo, Dystel, Goderich & Bourret.

  • Kirkus

    June 15, 2022
    Emotionally shuttered 16-year-old trans boy Neil has his world shaken when he starts to fall for his fake boyfriend. Neil wants to make it extremely clear to Josh, his heartbroken ex-friend-with-benefits, that they're finished, so he enlists Wyatt, his roommate at their expensive boarding school, to be his date to his brother Michael's weeklong Beverly Hills wedding celebration. They just have to pretend to be boyfriends in front of Josh, who'll be attending because his brother is Michael's best man, and then they can go back to hating and ignoring each other--or so Neil thinks. Aspiring musician Wyatt is lured in by Neil's promise of an audition with recording studio executive Michael. Neil ultimately finds there is more to Wyatt than he realized. The book fully leans into the poor-little-rich-boy trope but fails to make readers actually feel that bad for Neil. Facing transphobia from his family and the world at large, he understandably has put up defenses; however, when it comes to awareness of his financial privilege and showing basic civility toward Wyatt, he is so unpleasant for so long that it is hard to get to the part where he learns his lesson. Conversely, Wyatt's multiracial, two-mom family is financially poor but rich in love in ways that feel stereotypical. The fluttery romance that develops between the boys is not enough to make up for this lack of depth and nuance in characterization. Main characters are White. A potentially tender romance limited by shallow character development. (Fiction. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2022) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    July 29, 2022
    Grades 9-12 Neil is almost mentally prepared for his brother's wedding and all it will entail, from dealing with his controlling mother to his transphobic grandparents. That changes when Josh, his friend with benefits (and wedding date), announces he's in love with him--a sentiment Neil emphatically does not share. So, Neil hatches a plan--invite his roommate, Wyatt, as his wedding date and new boyfriend, proving to Josh that he (Neil) has moved on, and Josh should too. But what starts as a simple plan gets infinitely more complicated when the roommate he once despised turns into the one person Neil feels he can be himself around. The Feeling of Falling in Love joins the ever-expanding canon of YA books about fake relationships shifting into true romance. What makes this novel unique is Neil's beautifully written evolution from someone who cuts himself off from those who might love him for fear he's unworthy, to someone who both knows his worth and wants the best for himself and those he loves.

    COPYRIGHT(2022) Booklist, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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