Heartbreakers and Fakers

Razorbill. Jun. 2021. 352p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780593114940.
Gr 9 Up–Penny’s last night of her junior year ends in disaster. Instead of losing her virginity with her boyfriend, Jordan, she wakes up on the beach with Kai Tanaka, her best friend Olivia’s boyfriend and her lifelong enemy, to find out that they kissed at a party the night before. Penny and Kai come up with a plan to show that their feelings for each other had been real, intending to win back their partners, only to find out they have more in common than they realized. A book that abounds with tropes, including a one-note villain, fake relationships, and enemies-to-lovers romance, is told through alternating story lines that, while initially confusing, manage to show Penny finding an impetus to change and learning that there is a great deal to the world beyond her high school. Penny is white and Kai is Japanese American.
VERDICT A recommended purchase for public and high school libraries, with a happily-ever-after incorporating angst and twists along the way.

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