The One That I Want by Jennifer Echols
It’s so wrong when your best friend catches your Mr. Right!
Gemma can’t believe her luck when the star football player starts flirting with her. Max is totally swoon-worthy, and even gets her quirky sense of humour. So when he asks out her so-called best friend Addison, Gemma’s heartbroken.
Then Addison pressures Gemma to join the date with one of Max’s friends. But the more time they all spend together, the harder Gemma falls for Max. She can’t help thinking that Max likes her back—it’s just too bad he’s already dating Addison. How can Gemma get the guy she wants without going after her best friend’s boyfriend?
The One That I Want won the Aspen Gold Reader’s Choice Award, the Booksellers’ Best Award, and the Beacon!
Jennifer Echols is one of the better YA writers out there. Her Endless Summer stories are wonderful, charming, realistic reads.
The One That I Want is a slightly different kind of book, but still very well-written. However, this book is very, very American. By that, I mean that it tosses around terms like Majorette and Varsity like we all know what they are, but for most of us, this is a foreign language!
So I definitely enjoyed getting a bit of an education of US high school culture (even if I had to take to YouTube to learn what some things meant!).
I LOVED that both these characters liked each other from the beginning. There is – of course – a misunderstanding that leads to a love triangle (quadrangle?), but you could see ? and ? falling in love right from the start.
I had to love the author a little for pointing out sexism dished out to high school girls. The double-standard of footballers allowed to have as many girls as they want, but one boyfriend and a girl can be labelled a slut. I wish more YA authors would address these things, but, sadly, it seems a lot of authors are as misogynistic as the characters and the situations.
Max is Japanese-American, and this is something of a big deal in the book, as he lives in a conservative Southern part of the US where people from Asian backgrounds are few and far between. I found this a little hard to picture, as Australia has a massive Asian population, and you are far more likely to study an Asian language and culture at school than something like Spanish.
This was another good book from Jennifer Echols. I will have to track down some more!