The Kissing Booth

The Kissing Booth

4.5 75
by Beth Reekles
     
 

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Meet Rochelle Evans. Pretty, popular - and never been kissed.


Meet Noah Flynn. Badass, volatile - and a total player. And also Elle's best friend's older brother...


When Elle decides to run a kissing booth for the school's Spring Carnival, she locks lips with Noah and her life is turned upside down. But this romance seems far from fairy-tale

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Overview

Meet Rochelle Evans. Pretty, popular - and never been kissed.


Meet Noah Flynn. Badass, volatile - and a total player. And also Elle's best friend's older brother...


When Elle decides to run a kissing booth for the school's Spring Carnival, she locks lips with Noah and her life is turned upside down. But this romance seems far from fairy-tale and headed for heartbreak... Will Elle get her happily every after in the end?


The first published book by Beth Reekles - the internet sensation everyone is talking about!

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Elle and Lee have the perfect coed relationship: a best friend to shop with, stand up for you when others put you down, finish your sentences, and never ever-even for the slightest second-consider crossing the line between friendship and romance. Then Elle falls for Lee's older brother, and their friendship is put to the ultimate test. Kissing Booth is both predictable and deeply implausible. These kids have drunken parties, sleepovers at one another's houses without calling home, and sex within days of starting a relationship, and seem to wear the least amount of clothing possible at all times. Teens are likely to be turned off by this book as it paints them as irresponsible, unintelligent, and emotionally stunted on nearly every page. Simply put, today's young adults deserve a little more credit. The pacing of the novel leaves a lot to be desired, as there are several instances in which a plotline absorbs 30 to 40 pages of rising action only to fizzle in two to three anticlimactic pages. The poor writing and flawed characters can be forgiven, but the glorification of a controlling boyfriend as the ideal male is both insulting to women and a dangerous message to be sending girls.—Jennifer Furuyama, Pendleton Public Library, OR
Publishers Weekly
British teen author Reekles's debut novel began life (and gained popularity) on the self-publishing Web site Wattpad, before being acquired for U.S. publication in a three-book deal that includes a planned sequel. The story revolves around 16-year-old Rochelle "Elle" Evans's conflicted relationship with Noah Flynn, the (self-described) "bad boy" older brother of her longtime best friend, Lee. In just one week, Elle goes from having her first kiss to losing her virginity to Noah (off camera), then keeps their affair secret from everyone, including Lee. Readers may be drawn in by the forbidden romance, but Elle comes across every bit as vulnerable and naïve as Noah likes to tell her she is. Despite an eventual and unrealistic transformation on Noah's part, their power-imbalanced relationship is more upsetting than alluring: Noah has warned guys to stay away from Elle for years to "protect" her, chastises her for dressing too provocatively, and regularly uses his charms to manipulate or distract her. A lightly developed supporting cast and a slow pace further undermine an effort that doesn't live up to its potential. Ages 14–up. (May)
VOYA - Amy Wykoff
Elle and Lee have been friends since they were children and Lee's brother, Noah, has been like an older brother to Elle. When Elle finds out that Noah has threatened to beat up anyone who asks her out, she grows angry. At the school's carnival, Elle and Lee set up a kissing booth to raise money. When Elle gets stuck behind the booth, it is just her luck that Noah is next in line. They share a passionate kiss in front of hundreds of classmates and this is only the beginning. Elle's anger with Noah soon dissipates when she learns that he threatened any guy who showed interest in her because Noah secretly wanted to be with Elle. Noah and Elle start seeing each other, but keep this hidden. Lee finds out and is angry, but soon accepts the truth. Elle and Noah proclaim their love for one another and Elle is able to bring out the sweet side of bad boy Noah. Although an impressive work for a seventeen-year-old, unfortunately The Kissing Booth is slow-moving and unoriginal. This 448-page novel is often repetitive and readers may wonder why it took so many pages to wrap up this simple plot. Elle's naivete seems unrealistic, making her character shallow. In addition, Elle's relationship with Lee is superficial and unexplored. This novel is a typical love story of the teenage girl falling for an older, tough guy. Teens who enjoy stories of this type may be able to push through to the end. Reviewer: Amy Wykoff
Kirkus Reviews
Sixteen and never-been-kissed Elle is unprepared for the fallout from her brief stint working in a kissing booth. When Noah turns up as her first and only customer at the carnival booth, their kiss is more than either could have predicted. Unfortunately, as her best friend Lee's older brother, Noah is off-limits. Elle's resolve to honor this quickly crumbles when Noah confesses his feelings for her. Determined not to hurt her friendship with Lee, Elle demands that their romance stay a secret. Naturally, their clandestine activity is soon discovered, resulting in hurt feelings all around. Furthermore, jealous, narcissistic and with a tendency toward violence, Noah is far from the perfect boyfriend that Elle envisioned. Cardboard characters, a predictable plot and painful dialogue are only a few of the problems plaguing this too-familiar story. While Elle and Noah's romance is sufficiently steamy, readers will grow tired of the couple's incessant bickering. Elle's girl-next-door persona is endearing, but her continuing naïveté about Noah's true nature in the face of mounting evidence is implausible. The overlarge cast of secondary characters doing their best to populate a featureless setting is confusing. Initially presented on Wattpad and picked up with much hoopla by Random House, this unfortunate debut from a young author is in desperate need of a firmer editorial hand. Lacking in everything but length. (Fiction. 14 & up)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780385378673
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
04/09/2013
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
448
Sales rank:
76,752
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Excerpt copyright © 2012 by Beth Reeks. Published by Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc., New York. All rights reserved.
 
We were working on the banner for the kissing booth. The letters were cut out and Lee had smoothed the edges; we just needed to paint them and then nail them onto the booth itself. We had some decorations back at my house, and the posters were ready too. We also had a couple of boards with the price on.

‘Everybody’s been asking me all week what happened with you and Cody,’ Lee said to me. It was after school on Wednesday afternoon. We needed to hurry our asses up to get everything ready to set the booth up on Friday night.

‘You haven’t said anything too incriminating?’

‘I haven’t told them the truth, no,’ he laughed, dunking his brush into the pink paint again. ‘I don’t know why you said you were sick though.’

‘It was believable,’ I defended myself. ‘First thing I thought of.’

‘Yeah, I guess. But loads of the guys reckon it’s Noah scaring him off.’

‘He did look pretty threatening when I was waiting for Cody,’ I admitted, printing with my lipstick sponge onto one of the already dry letters.

Lee shrugged. It was a little while before he broke the silence again. ‘Shelly . . .’

‘Yeah?’

‘Does he ever scare you? I mean . . . I know he’s not quite the Incredible Hulk or anything, but he can lose his temper kinda quickly.’

‘That’s just the way he is. I grew up with him around. He couldn’t scare me – I know that he’s . . . intimidating . . .’

‘I guess,’ Lee said, nodding. Suddenly he dropped his paintbrush into the pot, splattering me with pastel-pink paint – my face, my blouse, my tie, my hair . . .

Lee!’ I screamed.

‘Sorry!’

I grabbed a brush and dunked it into the pot of black, totally prepared to flick it over Lee. But something cold and wet landed on my face and neck as he flicked me again, making me jump so much that I dropped my paintbrush, leaving a trail down my front.

Lee spluttered before collapsing into laughter. I scowled at him, waiting for him to stop.

‘It’s not funny, Lee!’

‘Yes it is! You sh-sh-should’ve s-seen your . . . your face!’ He was holding his side now. I glared and grabbed my bag. ‘W-where you going?’

‘The locker rooms to wash this crap off of my face,’ I snapped. ‘And stop laughing!’
‘I can’t help it!’ he gasped, bent double. ‘Your face!’

I stormed out, slamming the door behind me. I thought I had a spare blouse in my locker. We’d be going for a burger later and I did not want to go out looking like a Picasso.

I always thought the locker rooms at school were really weird: a big communal corridor, with notices and stuff pinned up, which led to the ‘fitness suite’, with its treadmills and weights, and the fields outside. The girls’ were on the far left, the boys’ on the right.

Just as I came into the corridor, the whole football team poured through the door. I’d already yanked off my tie and undone another button; I hadn’t stopped to think I might not be alone.
The boys all slowed down seeing me, and I stopped in my tracks.

And then the laughter broke out, all of them finding me hilarious, apparently.

‘What happened?’ Jason asked, biting his lip hard to try and keep from laughing.

‘We were painting the banner for our booth,’ I said.

‘Lee had a bucket of paint. Do I need to say anything more?’

He shook his head. Most of the boys started trailing into the locker rooms, still laughing and looking at me. I caught a couple of them shamelessly checking out my semi-unbuttoned shirt and put an arm across my chest.

‘Aw, come on,’ I said, doing a twirl and giving them a big grin – I’d rather make a joke out of it than be embarrassed. ‘Do I look that bad?’

‘Well, I’d pay to see you in the art gallery,’ said one of the boys, laughing. I rolled my eyes at him and drifted down the corridor toward the girls’ changing rooms, calling a goodbye over my shoulder.

A hand caught my arm, making me stumble backward, and then steadied me before I fell.
I turned to see who it was. Then the smile on my face dropped. ‘Oh.’

‘What’re you doing?’ hissed Noah. ‘You don’t walk around half dressed, Elle.’

‘I’ll walk around however the hell I want, thanks,’ I snapped back, jerking my arm away. ‘It’s no big deal. It’s not like I’m prancing around in my underwear, for Pete’s sake.’

‘Yeah but still . . .’ His eyes trailed down me, then he gave me a stern look.

‘Leave me alone already!’ I exclaimed, glaring at him. ‘Honestly, it’s bad enough you’re being so overprotective, but you don’t have to be so . . . extreme!’

‘So what happened with you and Cody? I know for a fact the whole “being sick” thing was a lie.’
I gaped. Was he blackmailing me? ‘You didn’t tell anybody, did you?’

He smirked, giving me a patronizing look. ‘I don’t gossip. And no, I didn’t tell them. Because I figured you had a good reason. So what went down?’

I shrugged. ‘Nothing.’

‘Something clearly happened–I know you well enough to spot when you’re lying. So what’s the truth?’

I bit the inside of my cheek, debating whether to tell Noah or just ask him to keep his nose out of it. But I thought maybe if I didn’t tell him, he’d jump to the stupid conclusion that Cody had overstepped the line.

While I was debating this, I couldn’t help but notice just how hot Noah looked in his football gear, with the shoulder pads and his helmet tucked under his arm. His hair was a little damp with sweat and he just looked . . . wow.

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