Pretending by Holly Bourne
3 out of 5 stars
Book Description: In this hilarious and heartbreaking debut novel perfect for fans of Fleabag, a woman struggling to move on after a traumatic relationship pretends to be “the perfect girl” in an act of vengeance that goes awry when she finds herself emotionally compromised. He said he was looking for a ‘partner in crime’ which everyone knows is shorthand for ‘a woman who isn’t real’. April is kind, pretty, and relatively normal – yet she can’t seem to get past date five. Every time she thinks she’s found someone to trust, they reveal themselves to be awful, leaving her heartbroken. And angry. Until she realizes that what men are really looking for is Gretel. Gretel is perfect – beautiful but low maintenance, sweet but never clingy, sexy but not a slut. She’s a Regular Everyday Manic Pixie Dream Girl Next Door With No Problems. When April starts pretending to be Gretel, dating becomes much more fun – especially once she reels in the unsuspecting Joshua. Finally, April is the one in control, but can she control her own feelings? And as she and Joshua grow closer, how long will she be able to keep pretending?
I received an ARC of Pretending from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. It was published on November 17th, so it is out in the world now!
I have never read any books by Holly Bourne, but I’ve always heard great things about her writing. I was so excited to be a part of the blog tour for her new book, Pretending. As soon as I read the book description, I knew I wanted to read it!
I want to point out that the subject matter is very heavy and could be very triggering to some people. I was actually not expecting it to be what it was. April went through a pretty bad thing in her life and she struggles with the aftermath throughout the entire book. She struggles to find herself and who she is as a person. She had some really great friends to help her through all of her difficult times and I loved the strong friendships as part of the story.
I know I only gave Pretending three stars, but that’s because I couldn’t 100% relate to the characters and this is the type of book that it’s kind of hard to rate and review (at least it is for me, I’m sorry!). I did like the story and I liked April though. I was rooting for her the entire way through and wanted everything to work out for her. She goes through so much; so many emotions and heartache. Her struggles were pretty intense and very valid.
Overall, I really think Pretending is an important story and I liked it. I really liked the ending and felt that April really grew throughout the story. I am so glad I was given the chance to read this book. As far as if I would recommend reading it…yes! I would recommend reading it. It may not have been five stars for me, but I know so many people will really like this book.
You can check out an excerpt of the first chapter of Pretending and more about the author over on my blog post from earlier today. I’ll have it linked below! 🙂
In case you missed it;
I hope you have a great day!