First off, I must admit that I have a weakness for adorable kisses in books. There is something that just makes me melt when reading about them. So it is no surprise that I was a pile of goo for most of this one. Because let me just tell you that The ABC’s of Kissing Boys is chock full of adorable kissing cuteness. Some books make you crave cupcakes or Slurpee’s or Cheetos but this book makes you crave something better! Making-out, hahah. From start to finish the joy of kissing is a prominent theme and I can’t say I minded one bit.
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys is about Parker and her desire to get back on her school’s JV soccer team. As a junior, Parker should have been a member of the Varsity team; she dreamed of it, hoped for it, willed it. But when she finds herself stuck on JV at the beginning of the year with all the lowly freshman and with all of her Varsity friends shunning her she makes a plan to get her spot back on the team and with her friends. All she needs is some help in kissing to make her plans work.
Enter next door neighbor Tristan, a cute freshman that seems to know about all things kissing. With a new deal set the two start on a journey that teaches Parker that it is more important to be liked then it is to be popular.
As far as characterization was concerned there were times I really liked Parker and other times I found her immature and childish. I mean I could see where she was coming from…her world was turned upside down by not making Varsity, but how she treated Tristan at times just wasn’t cool. She looked down on him because of his grade level and treated him like dirt when he was just trying to help her and give her what she wanted. She was jealous and selfish when it came to him but she refused to admit that she may actually like him. Then on the other hand when it was just the two of them alone together they were beyond adorable and in a lot of ways he acted like he was the one that was 364 days older while Parker was the freshman. Tristan’s maturity was a direct result of something Parker didn’t have, the ability to not care what people thought.
And that right there was Parker’s whole problem. She cared that people thought she was dating a baby. She cared that people looked down on her since she didn’t make Varsity. She cared that her obnoxious (don’t even get me started on my dislike of the mean girls) ‘friends’ would only talk to her if she was the exact same person as they were. When in reality Parker had it made. She was running the JV team, people looked up to her, she had an adorable boy on her side no matter what, and ultimately a former friend that was willing to take her back. She had all that matters and just needed to figure out for herself that she had it so good.
She learned that being popular isn’t the same as being likable.
In conclusion, I really enjoyed this book. It was my first foray into a Tina Ferraro story and I don’t think it will be my last. It was a fun, quick read with a great message at the end. Pick it up and see if you’ll be swayed like I was.