Author: Kelly Fiore
Publication date: July 22, 2014
Publisher: Walker Books for Young Readers
Source: e-ARC from publisher via Netgalley (Thank you, Bloomsbury!)
Synopsis: Pretty and popular track star Marijke Monti is confident about almost everything – she’s got great friends, a great family, and she’s on her way to the State Track Championship. In fact, the only thing Marijke isn’t confident about is her relationship with Tommy Lawson.
Lily Spencer has spent her entire high school career preparing for the future – she’s participated in every extracurricular activity and volunteer committee she could. But, at home, she watches her mother go on date after date with dud-dudes, still searching for “the one.” Lily realizes that she’s about to graduate and still hasn’t even had a boyfriend.
While they live on each other’s periphery at school, Lily and Marijke never seemed to have much in common; but, after a coincidental meeting at the movie theater, Lily gets an idea – why can’t life be like a movie? Why can’t they set up their perfect romantic situations, just in time for their senior prom, using movie techniques?
Once the girls come up with the perfect plans, they commit themselves to being secret cohorts and, just like in the movies, drama ensues.
*Book cover from Bloomsbury and synopsis from Goodreads
Just Like The Movies thoroughly encapsulates every teenage girl’s dream: to have a love life that resembles the kind seen in movies. The book’s realistic, vibrant, and entertaining prose reeled me in right away so putting it down was very difficult. I just wanted to read the whole day! Blending reality and fiction together, Just Like The Movies’ quirky concept is wonderfully clever.
The story is about the friendship that transpires between Marijke Monti and Lily Spencer. Having the same objective of making their love life just like the movies, Marijke and Lily bond over romantic comedies and in formulating a game plan on how they would achieve their goal. Marijke and Lily’s friendship is natural—the kind that a girl must have: enjoyable, down-to-earth, and most of all, real. Even if the girls don’t know each other for so long, both managed to establish a dynamic and worthwhile relationship.
Told in alternating POVs, Just Like The Movies contains everything I look for in a romantic comedy novel: funny dialogues, good-looking guys, and a one of a kind story line. Main characters Marijke and Lily both have compelling personalities and believable voices. I love them! I have no doubt that many readers would relate with Marijke and Lily or see pieces of themselves in the characters. Another thing I loved about the story is the authenticity of the romance in each of the girls’ lives. Marijke and her boyfriend Tommy’s relationship show the complexities that a typical teen couple goes through such as jealousy and trust issues. On the other hand, Lily and her crush, Joe Lombardi’s attraction is the ideal true to life picture of a developing high school love affair. Joe and Lily have a magnetic chemistry that is quite sweet and heart melting. This light and appealing YA contemporary made me laugh, smile, swoon, happy-dance, and happy-cry! It is the first Kelly Fiore book that I read and I’m downright satisfied. The author’s witty and dynamic style will keep you flipping page after page!
Undeniably enticing and too cute to resist, Just Like The Movies is a story that speaks the truth about friendship, love, and imperfect real life happily ever afters.
For today’s Just Like The Movies tour stop, author Kelly Fiore shares her playlist for the book! Happy listening, everyone! 🙂
Movie Soundtrack Playlist for Just Like the Movies
- In Your Eyes by Peter Gabriel (Say Anything)
- (I’ve Had) the Time of my Life by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes (Dirty Dancing)
- If You Leave by OMD (Pretty in Pink)
- I Say A Little Prayer by Burt Bacharach (My Best Friend’s Wedding)
- My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion (Titanic – DON’T HATE. THIS SONG IS AMAZE-BALLS.)
- Kissing You by Des’ree (Romeo + Juliet)
- Bittersweet Symphony by The Verve (10 Things I Hate About You)
- Iris by The Goo Goo Dolls (City of Angels)
- It Must Have Been Love by Roxette (Pretty Woman)
- Everything I Do (I Do It For You) by Bryan Adams (Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves)
- Independent Love Song by Scarlet (Bed of Roses)
- Come What May by Ewan MacGregor and Nicole Kidman (Moulin Rouge)
-The odd numbers are Marijke and Tommy songs.
-The even numbers are Joe and Lily songs.
About the author
Kelly Fiore has a BA in English from Salisbury University and an MFA in Poetry from West Virginia University. She received an Individual Artist Award from the Maryland State Arts Council in 2005 and 2009. Kelly’s poetry has appeared in Small Spiral Notebook, Samzidada, Mid Atlantic Review, Connotation Press, and the Grolier Annual Review. Her first young adult novel, Taste Test, was released in August 2013 from Bloomsbury USA. Forthcoming books include Just Like the Movies, again from Bloomsbury, in 2014 and The People Vs. Cecelia Price from HarperTeen in 2015.
Kelly teaches college composition in Maryland, where she lives with her husband and son.
*Author bio from Kelly Fiore’s website