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I Belong

Early Review: On the Fence by Kasie West

Title: On the Fence

Author: Kasie West

Genre: YA Contemporary

Series: N/A

Publication Date: July 1, 2014

Format: Paperback, 320 Pages

ISBN-10: 0062235672 (HarperTeen)

ISBN-13: 978-0062235671 (HarperTeen)

Reviewed by: Bridget


She’s a tomboy. He’s the boy next door…

Charlie Reynolds can outrun, outscore, and outwit every boy she knows. But when it comes to being a girl, Charlie doesn’t know the first thing about anything. So when she starts working at a chichi boutique to pay off a speeding ticket, she finds herself in a strange new world. To cope with the stress of her new reality, Charlie takes to spending nights chatting with her neighbor Braden through the fence between their yards. As she grows to depend on their nightly Fence Chats, she realizes she’s got a bigger problem than speeding tickets-she’s falling for Braden. She knows what it means to go for the win, but if spilling her secret means losing him for good, the stakes just got too high.

Fun, original, and endearing, On the Fence is a romantic comedy about finding yourself and finding love where you least expect

Quick & Dirty: This was an adorable romance filled with humor, lovable characters, and it was just pure fun. I would highly recommend this to fans of Anna and the French Kiss or The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, this would be right up your ally.

Opening Sentence: The engine whined against my attempt to go faster.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Sixteen year old Charlie Reynolds is a total tomboy and she is ok with that at least for now. She grew up with just her dad and three older brothers, so sports were engrained into her from a young age. She doesn’t know the first thing about dating or wearing makeup, so when she starts working at a stylish clothing store she finds herself completely out of her element. She always thought that jeans were meant to be comfortable not skin tight, and wearing anything with flowers on it is completely unacceptable. Her eyes are opened to a whole new world filled with make-up, glitter, and dating.

Charlie has always had trouble sleeping and with the added stress of her new job it has just got worse so at night she has started to drift out to the fence to talk to the boy that has always been a huge part of her life, her neighbor Braden. She starts to look forward to the nighttime chats with him, and soon she starts to realize that her feelings for Braden are more than just brotherly feelings. Charlie can’t lose Braden and admitting her feelings for him might be the one thing that will push him away for good.

I’m not going to lie, I want Charlie to be real so she can be my best friend. Everything about her was fun and energetic. She fits right in with the guys when it comes to sports and getting down and dirty during football, but when it comes to dating boys she is completely clueless. Her mother passed away when she was only six years old, so growing up with just her dad and three brothers has been wonderful, but not very educational on girl things. She never wears makeup and her everyday attire is a t-shirt and jeans with tennis shoes. I think the reason I loved Charlie so much was because she reminded me of myself when I was younger. I grew up with two older brothers and was very tomboyish as well. Luckily, I grew out of it at a younger age then Charlie, but I had some very similar experiences in my life that Charlie had. So suffice to say, I completely adored Charlie!

Just thinking about Braden gives me butterflies. He is just one of those boys that you instantly love and root for. Not only is he a totally hottie, but he is a very good listener as well. He has known Charlie forever and has always been considered a part of the family. I love that he accepts Charlie for who she is and doesn’t want her to change a thing about herself. Braden can be so charming, but he can also be kind of a jerk too. He doesn’t handle jealousy very well, but it was fun to see a different side to him. He is that guy that is consistent and even though he’s not perfect he will always be there for you no matter what. Braden has my stamp of approval and I honestly fell head over heels in love with him.

On the Fence is seriously such an amazing contemporary read. I might even go so far as to say that it is my favorite YA contemporary romance ever, it was that good. I have always been a sucker for romances where the couple starts as best friends because I adore when friendship grows into love. It just seems so natural and I found it much more realistic. West does such an amazing job making you connect with the story and characters. I found myself laughing out loud, getting completely giddy, and feeling totally awkward at moments throughout the story. Honestly, there are just not enough good things I can say about this book, as soon as I finished reading it I went and pre-ordered a copy because I knew this was a book I will re-read many times. Kasie West has quickly climbed her way to the list of my favorite authors and I will gladly read anything she writes. If you are a fan of Stephanie Perkins or Jennifer E. Smith, I think that On the Fence would be the perfect book for you. It is a clean, fun, and sweet romance that all young adult fans should read.

Notable Scene:

I hesitated now, realizing where we were, but he didn’t stop. He took me by the shoulders and turned me around to face the guys, who were now all staring at us. “By a show of hands,” Braden said loudly, “who here would’ve asked Charlie out in the last six months had they not been given the ‘We will kill you if you at Charlie’ speech by the three lugs over there when she turned sixteen?”

My first instinct was to yank away from Braden’s grip and never talk to him again. Ever. But the small thread of curiosity weaving through me seemed to have stitched me to the grass, because I couldn’t move.

A few guys shifted nervously and glanced at Jerom. Just when I started to feel extremely embarrassed that no one had moved. Tyler raised his hand. His bravery seemed to spur the others forward, because at least half a dozen of them put their hands up. Gage, thinking he was hilarious had even raised his hand. Braden, I noticed, had both hands still firmly grasping my shoulders.

“Which is exactly why we gave the speech,” Jerom said darkly.

“You don’t have to change for a guy,” Braden said quietly in my ear.

FTC Advisory: HarperTeen provided me with a copy of On the Fence. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged

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