Saturday, July 17, 2010

Review: Crash Test Love by Ted Michael

Title: Crash Test Love
Author: Ted Michael
Publisher: Delacorte
Release Date: June 8th, 2010
Pages: 353
 The last thing Henry Arlington wants is a girlfriend. He's just very, very good with girls—reading their body language, knowing what they want to hear, and more importantly: getting them into the backseat of his car. But all that changes when he meets Garrett Lennox at one of the many Sweet Sixteen parties he crashes.

Garrett thinks she's done with guys. She was dumped by her ex when she moved from Chicago to Long Island, and now she realizes that she needs to find out who she is by herself, instead of with a boyfriend. What she really needs is some good friends.

Fortunately for Garrett, the J Squad—the "it" girls of East Shore High School—want her in their clique. All she has to do is pass one little test: get East Shore god Henry Arlington to take her to one of the biggest Sweet Sixteens of the year, then dump him in front of everyone.

Garrett has promised herself not to fall for another guy, so playing with Henry's heart shouldn't be hard. Right?

And Henry doesn't fall for girls, so when he and Garrett start to click, it doesn't matter. Does it?
As William Shakespeare once said, "Love is blind," or in this case, the lovers may be, as Henry and Garrett fall in love—and into the trap that awaits them. Because neither of them can even begin to see what the girls of Henry Arlington's past have in store.
Plot: 3/5
Creativity: 4/5
Characters: 3/5
Writing: 3/5
Impact: 3/5
Overall: 3/5

Garrett and Henry are two individuals opposed to the idea of going steady. Garrett has had her heart broken more than a couple of times, and Henry is having way too much fun hooking up with random girls to just end it all and settle down with just one. But what if these two people meet and end up hitting it off? Well, you get something that's part Mean Girls, part John Tucker Must Die, a little bit Wedding Crashers, and a dash How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.

crash Test Love is a hilarious story of love, friendship, family, pranks, and deception. It follows two teenagers, Garrett and Henry, who start dating each other for reasons other than love, but end up over their heads as they turn out to be everything the other needed.

Garrett and Henry's story is cute and very believable. I wasn't as into it as I would have liked and I wanted to feel a bit more chemistry between them, but it was still a lot fun to read about their budding romance. Although I thought they'd be better friends than a couple, they have a lot of cute moments that will make readers smile. The ending of the story is bittersweet, but I wouldn't have had it any other way.

I also wasn't as in love with the main characters as I wanted to be. They're realistic and they're appropriate for the story, but I didn't really feel a strong connection to either of them. This slight drawback was compensated for by the secondary characters, though. Henry's friends, Duke and Nigel, are all sorts of hilarious! They're random, they're reckless, they're occasionally clueless- they're just a lot of fun. Best of all, their love and respect for Henry is apparent throughout the entire novel, and it was endearing to read about such a solid friendship among guys. The J Squad is a trio of unforgettable characters, too. They're mean and are overflowing with personality like The Plastics in Mean Girls, but I loved them. My personal favorite is Jessica. She's outrageous!

There are also a lot of pop-culture references in the novel. Henry is a total film conoisseur and Garrett is an audiophile, so film and music play very big parts in the story. Almost every scene in the book has a film or music reference, and those make it easier to process the thoughts or feelings of the characters. It was like having background music in my brain, accompanying the words and making them clearer.

If you're looking for a light read that will keep you laughing from the moment you turn the first page, then Crash Test Love is something you're going to want to try out. It's a quick read packed with tons of personality, and it's the type of read that's guaranteed to put a smile on your face.


  1. Wonderful review! This seems like a very enjoyable read. I'm curious about Garrett and Henry.

  2. I was looking forward to this book's release for months. Sadly, I still have yet to read it. I like that you thought it was really funny! Sometimes humor is the perfect companion to romance in a book. Thanks for the review!

  3. Sometimes you need a quick, fun read. I am glad I came across another Erika with a k though!

  4. Wow! I definitely fell in love with the book right after reading the synopsis and even more after finishing reading your review. The guys and girls dynamic in this book sounds like a fun thing to be read. Thanks for bringing this book under the spotlight. I wouldn't know of its existence any other way =)

    p.s. I am here from the CEP!