Publish Date: April 7, 2020
Synopsis: High school senior Keely Collins takes on firsts, lasts, and everything in between in this sweet, sex-positive rom-com for fans of Meg Cabot and Jenny Han.
It seemed like a good plan at first.
When the only other virgin in her group of friends loses it at Keely’s own eighteenth birthday party, she’s inspired to take things into her own hands. She wants to have that experience too (well, not exactly like that–but with someone she trusts and actually likes), so she’s going to need to find the guy, and fast. Problem is, she’s known all the boys in her small high school forever, and it’s kinda hard to be into a guy when you watched him eat crayons in kindergarten.
So she can’t believe her luck when she meets a ridiculously hot new guy named Dean. Not only does he look like he’s fallen out of a classic movie poster, but he drives a motorcycle, flirts with ease, and might actually be into her.
But Dean’s already in college, and Keely is convinced he’ll drop her if he finds out how inexperienced she is. That’s when she talks herself into a new plan: her lifelong best friend, Andrew, would never hurt or betray her, and he’s clearly been with enough girls that he can show her the ropes before she goes all the way with Dean. Of course, the plan only works if Andrew and Keely stay friends–just friends–so things are about to get complicated.
Cameron Lund’s delightful debut is a hilarious and heartfelt story of first loves, first friends, and first times–and how making them your own is all that really matters.
Disclosure: ARC provided for an honest review. #partner
In high school, firsts are awkward. And in Cameron Lund’s The Best Laid Plans, that specific first in a small town is even more so.
The Best Laid Plans has the recipe of your next favorite rom-com. It is even blurbed as so and lists everything you’re looking for: cute guys, awkward high school moments, flirting, drama, and oh the sweet romance of friends-to-lovers.
And I know it sounds crazy, but as I stand blinking on the other side of the door, all I can think abotu is this: What if this is it for me? What if this is officially the first and last ass I’ll ever see for the rest of my life? When I shut my eyes I can still see it, bright and white, like when you stare too long at the sun, and I’m afraid it’s going to be seared there forever.
Keely is a high school senior, that has mostly everything going for her. She has a best friend, is socially accepted, and knows her college future. And up until the first few pages of this book, she wasn’t the only virgin in her small town. Slowly, Keely notices everything change around her, with the sinking feeling that she’s the only one left. And we’ve all been there, haven’t we? Being that last one that everyone knows about. Do the boys like her for her or is it for some game?
Now, Keely’s next door neighbor, Andrew, is also her amazing best friend. He’s the buddy and the party all in one. Andrew is so much fun, and so so loyal to Keely. The whole time that I was getting to know him, I rooted for him to be the one. Why? Because he’s kind to her, even if he seemed to be the asshole dating around. In my mind, it didn’t make sense. But from the start, I was always Team Andrew.
And Dean? Rebel without a cause in a jacket and on a motorcycle, Dean? Well. He was a nice distraction, that’s for sure. But in a typical high school manner, there was that one boy that we had to learn from. Dean was the cause and effect of wanting something so bad that you thought it was really what you wanted. Was I ever Team Dean? No. He was not my cup of tea. *sips*
‘I’m just sick of being a virgin. And I trust you. You would never spread rumors about me or anything like that. I just thought, maybe, we could’ – I cough a little – ‘maybe we could have sex. Like, you could teach me. We could practice.’
Okay. First thing’s first. Let’s discuss the big topic on hand: virginity. It’s a difficult subject for some, an awkward one for others, and for the intended demographic of this book – who knows. The premise of The Best Laid Plans is Keely’s plan to no longer be the last virgin in their small town. She sets down this path of determination, feeling that she’s missing out becoming a woman. Her friends, who have all crossed the threshold into “womanhood” have subconsciously pressured her into this path. FOMO? It’s a thing, and it’s realistic. Lund does an amazing job balancing what happens in this social circle, versus what should be learned from this whole experience. Remembering that time, I wish someone would tell me the things that I know now.
I really, really enjoyed this book. Despite everything going around us, I was brought back to high school with all of the emotions that it could bring. I felt the friendships and the love, the awkward moments, and even the heartaches and heartbreaks. But a huge testament to Lund’s writing is that I loved my moments back there. I lived through these characters and became really invested. I laughed really hard, and cried at other times. Lund brought those feelings back and that’s always an amazing feat when an author can transport us like that.
Now I’m aware of his presense in a different way. Every time he comes into a room, I can feel myself tense, like the wires inside of me have been pulled tight and electric. When he walks into study hall and sits down at my table, I flinch. I force myself to look up at him and try to smile. I can be a normal, functioning human.
The Best Laid Plans is definitely a top contender on my Rom Com book list. I hope you enjoy it as well as I have.
*Thank you to the publisher for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.*