by Kendra C. Highley
Published by: Entangled Crush
Publication date: September 14th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
For “Perfect Paige” Westfeld, today is “D” Day. As in, she just got one on her calculus test. With her dreams of Stanford, her reputation, and her parents’ expectations at stake, Paige needs to find a way to save face before everything she’s worked for goes up in flames.
Ben Franklin (yes, he’s related) is from the wrong side of town, with the wrong clothes and the wrong kind of life. He also knows an opportunity when he sees one, and he’ll be happy to tutor Paige—if she makes him into the kind of guy her best friend, the hottest girl in school, will date.
It’s the perfect arrangement. And Paige is determined not even the inconvenient—and utterly imperfect—attraction simmering between her and Ben will ruin it…
“So why are we doing this again?” he called.
Even though he had no idea what she had in mind for this little stage play, he’d gone along with good humor. Hell, he was even washing her car for real. Which was funny because a clean car was beside the point in this plan.
“Just keep doing what you’re doing and all will become crystal clear.”
He gave her a long, weird look, then shrugged and went back to work. Paige joined him but spent part of her time focused on the street corner. Any minute now…
“Your tires are low,” Ben said, peeking at her around the front bumper. “If you have an air compressor, I could air them up for you.”
She propped her fist on her hip. “Does this look like the kind of house that keeps an air compressor on hand?”
He made a face, then laughed. “No, this looks like the kind of house where they call the dealership for help.”
They worked in silence until—there! Paige snapped to get his attention just as Zoey turned onto her street. Ben looked at her, and from the startled expression, she knew she was going to have to coach him through every second of this close encounter.
She gave him a stern look. “Take off your shirt.”
His already flushed face turned a deeper shade of red. “What? No way!”
Zoey had pulled up to the curb, and the BMW idled while she dipped out of view, probably to grab her purse. They only had a few seconds, and desperate times called for desperate measures. Paige stalked over to the hose and, under the guise of washing the suds off her car, “accidentally” sprayed Ben right in the chest.
His eyes popped wide open as he stared down at his soaked shirt. “Why?” he growled under his breath.
“Off,” Paige growled back, then turned to greet Zoey. “Hey! Thanks for letting me borrow your dress for the party next weekend.”
Zoey handed her a dress bag, looking at something beyond Paige’s left shoulder. “Yeah, sure.”
Zoey didn’t say anything else, and Paige hazarded a look behind her. As ordered, Ben had stripped off his shirt and oh…my…God.
Okay, so she had guessed he had nice shoulders under those T-shirts after all the work at the tire store, and she’d definitely copped a feel when they’d cuddled on the back porch, but she couldn’t have known he was that ripped. He was lean—leaner than most of the football players anyway—but he made the most of what he had, from the tight biceps and defined pecs, right down to the hard, flat stomach and the tantalizing trail of light brown hair running from his navel into the waistband of his shorts…which, oh hell, were riding low on his hips.
She didn’t want to blink so she could keep staring. Jesus.
Doing a great job of pretending he didn’t notice them hanging on his every move, he reached across the top of the Mustang to soap up the roof. He was a quick study, for sure, stretching in ways that showed off his arms and shoulders. Then he walked over to the bucket and very deliberately bent down to soak the sponge. She might need to sit down. His back was just as good as his front.
She’d created a monster. A very hot, slightly wet monster.
OH MY GOSH.
This book is beyond adorable! I absolutely loved “Perfect Paige” (or is she??) and Ben (Franklin. Yes, Ben Franklin. Benjamin Fisher Franklin, which means–you got it–his initials are BFF. LOL!). They are my new favorite couple. And Ben would be my number one book boyfriend, if only I were remotely close to 17 again. So I’m going to have to gift him to Mini Moe #2 instead. Iknow she’ll appreciate 🙂
I really liked that Ben was the one who started out so clueless about how perfect he and Paige were for each other–it seems like so many times it’s the girl who’s all ga-ga for the wrong guy, not seeing the person who’s right in front of them. This was a nice reversal. Well, not so much for poor Paige, who just saw herself as being overlooked for her best friend–again. It all gets fixed in the end, though (well, okay, more like 2/3 of the way through, really) so that’s all good.
Except for the pressure being “Perfect” is putting on Paige. And the more-than-slight obsession her mother has with controlling her life…not to mention Mrs. Westfield’s conviction that Ben doesn’t belong in it.
But Paige is going to figure out her own path–with some encouragement from Ben, of course, but she’ll do it all on her own.
And Ben will pull out some major moves to win over Paige’s parents. (Chocolate, butter, and sugar may be involved. There’s even a Say Anything reference in there. It’s epic. And the lavender! Reading about the lavender, and then realizing that it’s on the cover too? Gave me all the feels…)
And then there’s Zoey–best friend / Ben’s former love interest Zoey–who winds up being the best friend to beat all best friends ever. Her book cannot possibly be released soon enough. (Hint, hint.)
This was a quick read–a believable, sweet YA romance that you just don’t want to end, but find yourself smiling like a total dork when it does.
And then you go back and re-read all the awesome bits you highlighted.
Did I mention I was anxiously awaiting Zoey’s book? 😉
Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A
I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.