Anais and Vaughn are best friends, misfits, and known throughout their high school as Anus and Vag—nicknames coined by the popular Shrew Crew. But after the sixteen-year-olds are the subjects of a humiliating prank involving laxatives, it’s the last social crucifixion they can stand.
So the girls amp up their plain-Jane looks and hit the L.A. scene with a vengeance. What starts as an innocent first kiss with TV star and mega-hunk Baron Caldwell becomes the start of a hot gossip blog, KissnTell.com.
Anais and Vaughn soon secure their place in the limelight. Anais finds a boy she really cares about, and Vaughn finds the popularity she’s always wanted. But when the girls are shaken by a devastating situation, they see their friendship fall apart. Can they use KissnTell to their advantage while getting the revenge they deserve? Or will Anais lose Vaughn to the Shrew Crew forever?
***I received this eARC in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley and Full Fathom Five
I just finished reading KissnTell maybe 30 minutes ago and I’m still reeling in my emotions. I don’t know how to feel about this story and am flooded with so much anger it’s borderline rage at how much of a self-centered horrible person one of the main character’s is. I honestly can’t remember the last time a book made me feel so much hatred and dislike towards a character. I thirsted for revenge on behalf of the other main character, I wanted her to suffer, and forgiveness was not an option. When I started to write this review, I thought, I can’t let my extreme dislike steer my entire review because KissnTell does have some amazing things going for it, but getting past the disgust is a challenge.
- The chemistry between characters is flawless. The dialogue flows seamlessly and captures whatever feelings exist between characters. The vapid, shallowness of the Shrew Crew is embodied in their mannerisms, their apathy, and the way they talk down to each other in sugary flakiness and sometimes blunt sarcasm. Each interaction is a lesson in humanity or lack there of. The way we use and abuse people, how self-absorbed and conceited many people are, and how people can push others aside to get ahead.
- Characters are fully developed and have unique stories, though sometimes a bit cliché. Personalities are bold, vibrant, and don’t really waiver. They’re exactly what they put out.
- Hollywood is a seedy, grotesque place with amble amounts of money and ways to monopolize on the system. The world of paparazzi, infiltration, and selling gossip is sordid and messy but just as you’d expect. Small details like fashion, name brands, restaurants, even food choices are all pieces that make this story feel authentic and realistic, like it’s something that could be happening at this very moment.
- Anais is brilliant, quirky and calm in perilous situations. She always takes a step back to assess and think things through and is a wonderful best friend. She knows what Vaughn needs and how to placate her. It takes an incredible person to stand by her best friend after such mistreatment and hurt. Anais perseveres through everything and comes out even stronger.
- Austin and Anais are adorable. He’s attentive and goes well beyond to help her in her time of need. His adoration in clear. They’re infatuated with each other and they get along so well that they seem like they’ve been together for years. The scene where they watch a movie with Anais’ mom is precious.
- There are several things that I was NOT okay with that happened in this story. Firstly, the whole situation with Baron. What he does is sexual assault. It’s not something that should be brushed off or joked about. The fact that the main character is traumatized for like 5 minutes and then ignores it is completely mind-boggling. The guy is an abusive, violent and aggressive jerk and the fact that no one seems to care and even expects it…I would have liked to see more mulling over this incident, a little more emotion, or maybe thoughts about it at the very least. No means no.
- Vaughn is a hot mess of epic proportions, she’s so naïve it borders on idiotic and the way she sells people out made me want to throw my iPhone across the room. Hearing her thought process didn’t help anything. She’s so desperate for popularity that she’s sacrifice everything and betray the only person who seems to care about her. She’s worse than the Shrew Crew because she knew what she was doing and couldn’t bring herself to care. There are some things that are forgivable but it kills me how easily, despite years of best friendship that Anais brushes it off. It’s unrealistic and kind of sickening.
- The Vag and Anus scene in the beginning was so brutal and bizarre that it came off as cheesy.
- Xander and that scene (purposely being vague to not have any spoilers). I felt terrified, sad and nauseated. How she clings to her shoes and let’s something as simple as being nice win her over despite years of psychological abuse in terms of extreme bullying… I was shocked and my disappointment topped the overall dislike.
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