About the book
Popping The Cherry is a young adult ebook by Aurelia B. Rowl. It was published by Harlequin UK on 19th September 2013 and the book is 250 pages long. I received an ebook for review though NetGalley.
Valentina (Lena) Bell thinks she’s a complete failure. She failed her driving test on the first try and she’s never had sex. Being a virgin makes her feel different from all of her friends, like an outsider. To help her out, Lena’s friends come up with Operation: Popping the Cherry. They come up with a list of eligible men and all Lena has to do is work through them to find the perfect guy for her first time.
But Lena has trouble finding the perfect guy. After dates with crazy musicians and in the closet friends, she thinks she is destined to be a virgin for a long time. Luckily for Lena though, she has Jake to lean on through hard times. Problem is, he’s her best friend’s brother and completely out of bounds.
What I thought
Author Aurelia B. Rowl has got British teenagers spot on in this young adult novel. Many young adult novels do not portray realistic teenagers and instead focus on unrealistic experiences and love.
Protagonist Lena Bell is desperate to lose her virginity. None of her friends are virgins anymore and she can’t quite connect with them in the same way anymore because of her not having had sex. I found the conversations and actions between Lena and her friends to be really realistic and I could really picture them all sitting around talking about Lena and her ‘situation’.
Not only does the book deal with the aspect of virginity in teenagers but also peer pressure which I thought was an important thing to address. Rowl shows that teenagers can feel forced to do something they’re unsure of due to their friend’s experiences but she also shows that teenagers should think for themselves rather than following the pack.
While I thought the idea for Popping the Cherry was a fun read, it wasn’t completely realistic. The time span of the book isn’t too long but so much happens to poor Lena. She encounters many situations which I doubt would ever happen in someone’s life let alone in such a short space of time. I also don’t think some of the situations needed to be as dramatic as they were and they could have been toned down a little bit and still worked.
Love interest Jake was a wonderful character. A little older than Lena, he had more experience with relationships and was there to make Lena feel more like herself, rather than feeling like she should be someone else. Jake really was the perfect gentleman, always being there for Lena when she needed him and he was sweet as hell as well. He was definitely one of my favourite aspects of this book.
Overall, Popping the Cherry is a fun, quick read but with a really important subject for teenagers. A great read.