Even When You Lie To Me -- Teacher's Pet

Even When You Lie To Me | Jessica Alcott
Release Date: June 9, 2015 | Crown Books
Genre(s): Young Adult, Contemporary
Pages: 352
Edition: Kindle
Source: Purchased | Amazon

Fans of John Green's Looking for Alaska as well as Lauren Oliver and Sarah Dessen will embrace this provocative debut novel, an exploration of taboo love set against the backdrop of a suburban high school.
Charlie, a senior, isn't looking forward to her last year of high school. Another year of living in the shadow of her best friend, Lila. Another year of hiding behind the covers of her favorite novels. Another year of navigating her tense relationship with her perfectionist mom.

But everything changes when she meets her new English teacher. Mr. Drummond is smart. Irreverent. Funny. Hot. Everyone loves him. And Charlie thinks he's the only one who gets her.

She also thinks she might not be the only one with a crush.

In this stunning debut, Jessica Alcott explores relationships-and their boundaries-in a way that is both searingly honest and sympathetic.

I must be cursed by the bookish gods. That HAS to be the explanation as to why EVERY book I've read for the past 3 or so weeks have been a disappointment. What in the world did I do to deserve this? Did I love A Court Of Thorn & Roses too much, The Wrong Side Of Right, I'll Meet You There? Have I raved about my favorite books to the point it pissed the gods off? Whatever I did, reading book after book and not finding ONE that I actually love, and barely enjoy is probably the cruelest punishment ever.

Cue The Tears *

I'm currently feeling like the evil witch of a substitute teacher, ready to raise all kinds of hell for my crappy reading month.

* Grabs ruler and chalk *

So have a seat kids . . . class is now in session.

Even When You Lie To Me, was one of those books I just knew I was going to love. I mean come on, who doesn't love a good ole' scandalous student-teacher relationship? I couldn't help but to assume that the story would be similar to Unteachable by Leah Raeder, (which I loved btw) so as I read the first couple of chapters I started mentally screaming,
 Well, obviously you can tell I didn't love it, and I'm sure it's an even easier guess to know that while I was reading, I stupidly made comparisons between both stories, something you should NEVER, EVER do if you don't want to ruin your own reading experience.


So when I turned the last page, and chucked my kindle off to the side, I came to 3 different conclusions.

 (A) The story wasn't at all what I expected, and the " For Fans of John Green's Looking For Alaska, Laura Oliver, and Sarah Dessen " comparison in the blurb was SUPER MISLEADING!

(B) The main character was a huge thorn in my side.

(C) This would be the 9th book that I rated 3 stars and below. Ahh, I'm so over this reading funk.

* Cue The Tears Again *

 The characters, plot, etc, just wasn't what I thought it would be. I envisioned this forbidden romance between the student and teacher, and even though it's young adult, I still expected there to be some type of " steamy scenes " throughout the story. Instead the author took a different route, fluffing out what's usually explosive, intense, spicy, and okay yes all types of WRONG, which really disappointed me. In my opinion, if you're going to write a novel around the aspect of such forbiddeness, (is that even a word?) then you MUST push the envelop! Screw watering it down to fit the mold of YA, cross that damn line and blow us out of the water! GO BIG OR GO HOME DARN IT!

One thing that I noticed about myself, is that I don't have much patience for YA these days, and boy did it show this time around. Our main character Charlie, was a difficult perspective to read from. Yes she was intelligent, witty, and in the beginning very sensible, but mid-way through the story her flaws shined brighter than ever, and to be honest, I grew incredibly annoyed.

My issue with Charlie didn't have anything to do with the weird crush she had on her charming teacher Mr. Drummond, but had everything to do with her childishness and blooming insecurities. One minute she was crushing on her teacher from afar, then the next she's stalking him, throwing temper-tantrums when something involving him didn't go her way, even going as far to show up at his apartment (drunk btw) on her birthday. But to cut Charlie some slack, she wasn't the only character that I had a hard time connecting with. Her mother was incredibly weird, and was partially the reason for her daughter's insecure ways. I didn't like how she constantly nagged Charlie about wearing makeup so that she could feel " beautiful ", or how she always seemed to want Charlie to have a boyfriend. The lack of love/support from her mother in my opinion, was one of the reasons why Charlie was so desperate for male attention.

 Lila, her bestie was an SAD excuse for a friend, and our main attraction Mr.Drummond was a pretty entertaining character, however, he entertained a little too much if you know what I mean.

The upside to Even When You Lie To Me was that on top of it being well-written, it was super fast paced. Readers will have no problem finding themselves engrossed in the story of Charlie and Drummond, however, in my case, the story left me longing for something MORE. I wanted a risky plot, something that would get my heart racing with not only anticipation, but of fear for what was coming next. I found myself craving characters that were passionate and capable of turning up the heat within the pages. The author did manage to give us a little intimate scene that was meant to be sexy, but ended up being a complete disaster to witness . .

He shifted uncomfortably and caught my hand. " Seriously kid, it's okay. I'm happy just to have made you happy. Suddenly I felt like I was going to cry. " Please, " I said. His expression changed as if he'd heard the catch in my voice. He took his hand off mine. " I guess if it's that important to you. "

You're going to cry because he doesn't want you to play with his penis?  

Finally, slowly, I pulled his boxers down. I touched it experimentally; it was warm and firm but not rock hard as I imagined it would be. It wasn't angry-looking or alien. It looked hot -- like a physical manifestation of how much he wanted me.

This sounds weirdly like she's explaining a 5th grade science project. 

If you pick this up, good damn luck to you. Class is now dismissed.