Publishing Info: June 25, 2013 by Harlequin
Source: Received from the publisher for review purposes
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: July 13, 2013
Related Posts: Confessions of an Angry Girl (Confessions #1), No More Confessions (Confessions #3)
Rose Zarelli has big plans for sophomore year—everything is going to be different. This year, she’s going to be the talented singer with the killer voice, the fabulous girl with the fashionista best friend, the brainiac who refuses to let Jamie Forta jerk her around...
...but if she’s not careful, she’s also going to be the sister who misses the signals, the daughter who can only think about her own pain, the “good girl” who finds herself in mid-scandal again (because no good deed goes unpunished) and possibly worst of all...the almost-girlfriend.
When all else fails, stop looking for love and go find yourself.
I absolutely LOVED the first book in this series, CONFESSIONS OF AN ANGRY GIRL — so much so that I actually went out and requested this one from HarlequinTeen because I was dying to read it! So a big thanks to them for sending me the paperback to review! Louise Rozett did it again. Another great portrayal of Rose Zarelli’s life as she knows it. Rose is back for her sophomore year, and she’s ready to take on the world by storm with Rose 2.0! But where does she stand with heartthrob (and oh, he is) Jamie Forta?
The first thing I’m going to say about CONFESSIONS OF AN ALMOST GIRLFRIEND is JAMIE FORTA. Jamie. Forta. Oh, I love him. But okay… More on him later. This is the story of Rose! Who last year struggled with the death of her father and well… She’s still sort of struggling with it! But I’m glad she is — and don’t take that the wrong way — because grief takes time. It was interesting to see how Rose’s family has changed since her father’s death a year and a half ago, both as a unit and as individual people. The death of Alfonso Zarelli sort of tore his family apart in ways that I don’t think anyone would have predicted and I actually think Rose is the most adjusted one, despite what her mother probably thinks.
I actually felt like Rose’s mom really loses her cool a bit more in this book than in the first. Maybe we just didn’t see that change in her mom so much because Rose was having such a hard time and she wasn’t noticing the difference. Especially now that Rose and her mom are in counseling, so many issues come up that they’re forced to address and it puts even more of a strain on their relationship until they fix them. Her brother Peter is starting to deteriorate and that’s also become incredibly noticeable as well. Her poor family is falling apart without her father.
In a way, this jolt to the Zarelli’s helps Rose become more “Rose 2.0” than I think even she anticipated. Rose intended to start sophomore year with an attitude that no one would hurt her because she wouldn’t let it — Rose 2.0. Turns out, that’s a lot harder to do than it sounds, but Rose is able to rediscover herself in different ways, one of which turns out to be music. She actually has to try a lot of things to figure out what fits her best (and HEY. LOUISE. Didn’t appreciate the choir and musical theater slamming from Rose! But… Okay, I’ll let that one slide). She learns how to make decisions for herself and basically becomes isolated from her family and friends at one point in time because of a series of events that led to Rose REALLY figuring out who she wants to be and how she wants to act.
Rose is also dealing with yet another event that turns her from good samaritan to tattle tale when a bullying incident occurs. Rose simply does what she thinks is right and what she thinks will help and somehow it turns into one book-long catastrophe when she helps a boy named Conrad after he’s being hazed by the swim team for being gay. CONFESSIONS OF AN ALMOST GIRLFRIEND deals with several tolerance issues and brings up a lot of points on bullying which was interesting to see. I liked how it was handled and that even though it’s the right thing to do, sometimes it takes a lot of courage to stand up against a bully and put your foot down. Just because you do something good doesn’t mean that that’s the easy road, and Rose learns that several times over. I really did like this story line and the stand against bullying… But I also felt like that took away from the Rose story line and switched it to Conrad’s story. Rose was a victim of bullying in book one, so everything was relevant to her life, so I felt like for it to happen to a brand new character sort of just took away from the main focus being Rose.
That being said… JAMIE FORTAAAA. Oh, Jamie. He’s so dreamy. When he first showed, I practically melted into a puddle of little hearts. He’s just that bad boy with a heart of gold, and he’s the older guy, and Jamie! You’re killing me with this back and forth thing! I don’t know… I could swoon all day but.. Just read the books yourself! You’ll KNOW.
I think CONFESSIONS OF AN ANGRY GIRL may still be my favorite of the two, but I really liked where Louise Rozett took CONFESSIONS OF AN ALMOST GIRLFRIEND. Since book one was freshman year and book two was sophomore year, I’m hoping there’s a three and four in our future with junior and senior written all over them!
Rose Zarelli // Character Obsessions: Jamie Forta, her father’s memorial website, music.
Rose is back! I really liked seeing Rose evolve into Rose 2.0, as she called herself, and I’m actually glad it didn’t go the way she planned. Rose 2.0 was originally sounding like she might be a mean girl and sure, she still has some “angry” issues, but instead of getting tough, Rose starts to just grow up. I loved seeing her change and find herself along the way of this book!
Jamie Forta // Character Obsessions: Being dreamy, Rose Zarelli, the Deladdos.
Jamie has that sense of mystery that made me both want to swoon over him and smack him across the face. I think Rose did maybe a little of both haha! His internal debate sort of killed me this book, but how can you not love him? I’m HOPING he’ll have sorted some things out for the next book (there IS a next book, right!?) because I need to see him and Rose having a legit relationship!
Kept Me Hooked On: The bad boy. I feel like sometimes I can go either way with the “bad boy” romantic interest, but oh, Jamie. He keeps me swooning. (Also, just so you have this frame of reference, I’m picturing Jess from Gilmore Girls. Yeah.)
Left Me Wanting More: Rose + Jamie. Rose does discover herself a lot in this book, but I also wanted see more of her AND Jamie. It was such a big part of book one and what I was expecting to see more of in book two and I just didn’t get enough!
I’ll buy this whole series. I love Louise Rozett’s writing and I still keep recommending CONFESSIONS OF AN ANGRY GIRL to people looking for a good contemporary read!