Guest Review: The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) by Amy Spalding

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Guest Review: The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) by Amy SpaldingThe New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) by Amy Spalding
Published by Poppy on April 5, 2016
Pages: 320
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

A ridiculously cute, formerly-famous new guy dropping into your life? It's practically every girl's dream.

But not Jules McCallister-Morgan's.

I realize that on paper I look like your standard type-A, neurotic, overachiever. And maybe I am. But I didn't get to be the editor of my school's long-revered newspaper by just showing up*. I have one main goal for my senior year-early acceptance into my first choice Ivy League college-and I will not be deterred by best friends, moms who think I could stand to "live a little," or boys.

At least, that was the plan before I knew about Alex Powell**.

And before Alex Powell betrayed me***.

I know what you're thinking: Calm down, Jules. But you don't understand. This stuff matters. This is my life. And I'm not going down without a fight.


* Okay, I sort of did. But it's a sore subject.

** I mean, I guess everyone knows about Alex Powell? Two years ago, you couldn't go anywhere without hearing about viral video boy band sensation Chaos 4 All. Two years ago, Alex Powell was famous.

***Some people think I'm overreacting. But this. Means. War.

Filled with romance, rivalry, and passive-aggressive dog walking, Amy Spalding delivers a hilariously relatable high school story that's sure to have you falling for The New Guy.

A message from Meredith: Hey everyone! Today, I have Melanie here with a guest review for The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) by Amy Spalding

You can find Melanie on Melanie’s Musings and on Twitter!

Without further adieu, here’s Melanie’s review! Enjoy!


Sometimes I want a lengthy, highly descriptive, fantasy world to get sucked into and other times I was a fast, fun read. The New Guy (And other Senior Year Distractions) fell into the latter.

I quickly read it one afternoon and it was just the right amount of fun I was looking for to escape that particular day.

Jules was the first thing that I enjoyed. I always think that YA can use more girls who know exactly what they want and Jules has her future plans down to an exact science of what grades and extra activities she needs to get early admission into an Ivy League. Yes, a smart female lead! I’m here for it!

Enter Alex who is a new student and formerly a member of a highly popular boyband (think a short lived One Direction.) He is the start of a mess of problems for Jules including a rivalry with the school newspaper and now broadcast news.

While I did enjoy Jules’ character from the beginning, there were also plenty of times I got frustrated with how much she was worried about herself. Sure, it was important that she reached her goals, but it was often at the expense of her friends.

Whatever problems Jules had in maintaining her friendships, she did have a great support system in her moms. They were great and really cared about their daughter.

All in all, Jules’ story and struggles still maintained a relatability despite the LA location and former pop star new kid. There are always kids working themselves harder than you’d believe to reach their goals and there are always going to be rivalries between other students. For the most part, I still got the sense that these were real teenagers who could be from anywhere based on their goals and feelings.

While this might have been a quick read, it definitely had the nostalgia of high school for me that I remembered with struggling to maintain too many things at once. The New Guy will be a perfect read for a high school student who needs a break from working hard or even for someone who wants to briefly remember what it was like to be focused on the times they’re in now that was once on a future goal.


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