By: Emily Wibberley & Austin Siegemund-Broka
Published Year: 2018
Summary (Provided by Goodreads): Shouldn't a girl get to star in her own love story?
Seventeen-year-old Megan Harper is about due for her next sweeping romance. It's inevitable—each of her relationships starts with the perfect guy and ends with him falling in love . . . with someone else. But instead of feeling sorry for herself, Megan focuses on pursuing her next fling, directing theater, and fulfilling her dream college's acting requirement in the smallest role possible.
So when she’s cast as Juliet (yes, that Juliet) in her high school’s production, it’s a complete nightmare. Megan’s not an actress, and she’s used to being upstaged—both in and out of the theater. In fact, with her mom off in Texas and her dad remarried and on to baby #2 with his new wife, Megan worries that, just like her exes, her family is moving on without her.
Then she meets Owen Okita, an aspiring playwright inspired by Rosaline from Shakespeare's R+J. A character who, like Megan, knows a thing or two about short-lived relationships. Megan agrees to help Owen with his play in exchange for help catching the eye of a sexy stagehand/potential new boyfriend. Yet Megan finds herself growing closer to Owen, and wonders if he could be the Romeo she never expected.
That cover! This color blue/green is my favorite. I love minty blues and it immediately caught my eye. Add in the pop of pink for the flowers and the font of the title and I was in without reading the summary. The summary was interesting, but honestly, didn’t draw me in as much as the cover did. In fact, I only requested it from the library when a couple of other books I wanted were unavailable.
What I thought
I did not have a book this summer that made me feel the way some of my other favorites have made me feel, until this one. In fact, this was my first 5 star rated book since January!
Megan is known as the boy-crazy school flirt. She always has a boyfriend and isn’t ashamed to flirt and go after who she wants. The problem is that every guy she dates breaks up with her a few months into their relationship because they have found their true love in someone else. Megan’s dream is to become a director and she has been working towards that dream since her freshman year of high school. As it’s her senior year, she is required by the college program she want to attend to act in at least one production. She auditions for Romeo and Juliet and, to her horror, ends up as Juliet. During the production, she meets Owen.
Everything about this book worked for me. I feel like in some books a character like Megan would be slut-shamed and I really appreciated that this did not occur. Yes, some of the girls implied that they didn’t respect Megan as much because she had been sexually active with so many guys, but it didn’t turn into a bullying situation and Megan stood up for herself. Megan is a strong character and is comfortable in who she is and what she wants. However, she isn’t perfect. She has her flaws and weaknesses but throughout this story she faces them.
Owen is adorable. He is sweet and kind and innocent. Meghan talks about how she loves embarrassing him until the tips of his ears turn red and I just loved that. I also loved seeing him get more and more comfortable with himself and learning how to take Megan’s teasing.
When I read the summary, the part of the story that kind of put me off was Romeo and Juliet. Rome and Juliet is not one of my favorite Shakespeare stories and I was worried that it was going to negatively influence the story. I think Wibberley and Siegemund-Broka balanced the story wonderfully. I related to the fact that Megan, while she appreciated the story, didn’t understand or relate to Juliet. The ins and outs of their theater production were wonderful to read as well. Having been in theater in high school, I felt like I was taken back but drawn more into the drama that can be the theater world.
On top of the great story, there are great relationships. Megan has two best friends, Madeline and Anthony. Their friendships aren’t perfect, but very real. I loved reading about all of them. I also liked Megan’s family dynamic. Her parents are divorced and she lives with her dad and his new wife and child in Oregon, while her mom moved to Texas.
I think what I found so enjoyable about this story is that it was fresh and not full of clichés. Megan had her issues but was confident and knew who she was. She and all of the characters around her grew as people and there were plenty of squeal worthy moments. There were moments when I thought I was going to get annoyed with Megan, but then she would have an inner commentary and it would address whatever I was starting to get annoyed about and I would find myself liking her even more.