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Whisper Reviews is going to be a feature in the blog where I showcase books I needed to review eons ago (not that long, but kind of) and write a short review for each book.

Below, I have a YA fake-relationship that was adorable; a rom-com filled with pranks, laughter and Brazilian culture; a contemporary fiction on teacher dynamics.


THE UPSIDE OF FALLING
by Alex Light
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Publication Date: February 18th 2020 by HarperTeen
Format: eARC

Rating: ★★★★
Goodreads | Amazon
It’s been years since seventeen-year-old Becca Hart believed in true love. But when her former best friend teases her for not having a boyfriend, Becca impulsively pretends she’s been secretly seeing someone.

Brett Wells has it all. Being captain of the football team and one of the most popular guys in school, he should have no problem finding someone to date, but he’s always been more focused on his future than who to bring to prom. When he overhears Becca’s lie, Brett decides to step in and be her mystery guy. It’s the perfect solution: he gets people off his back for not dating and she can keep up the ruse.

Acting like the perfect couple isn’t easy though, especially when you barely know the other person. But with Becca still picking up the pieces from when her world was blown apart years ago and Brett just barely holding his together now, they begin to realize they have more in common than they ever could have imagined. When the line between real and pretend begins to blur, they are forced to answer the question: is this fake romance the realest thing in either of their lives?
This was so cheesy, adorable and cute! It also felt super real. The author had me feeling all of the emotions and my heart broke for Brett many times.

Becca has locked her heart and thrown away the key. She doesn't want to know what heartbreak is. She's seen enough of it from her parent's divorce. But when she's cornered, she lies and says she's dating Brett, whom goes along for the ride. Both of them start a fake-relationship, but for it to be real, they need to spend time together. It's during these times they slowly start falling for each other.

"I can't believe I have a crush on a girl with such horrible ice cream taste."

Brett and Becca were absolutely adorable! Like I mentioned above, their relationship felt so real to me. I loved how they handled all the different aspects of dating, while also staying true to themselves.

This book also broke my heart, especially for Brett. He's going through a lot in the story, and it ends up climaxing in a way he never expected. I loved how the author maintained such an authenticity towards this situation--she kept it raw and real.

Overall, The Upside of Falling has just the right amount of fluff with emotions to keep you entertained, smiling, while also tugging at your heart-strings.

💕💕💕

THE WORST BEST MAN
by Mia Sosa
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Publication Date: February 4th 2020 by Avon
Format: eARC

Rating: ★★★★½
Goodreads Amazon
It’s been years since seventeen-year-old Becca Hart believed in true love. But when her former best friend teases her for not having a boyfriend, Becca impulsively pretends she’s been secretly seeing someone.

Brett Wells has it all. Being captain of the football team and one of the most popular guys in school, he should have no problem finding someone to date, but he’s always been more focused on his future than who to bring to prom. When he overhears Becca’s lie, Brett decides to step in and be her mystery guy. It’s the perfect solution: he gets people off his back for not dating and she can keep up the ruse.

Acting like the perfect couple isn’t easy though, especially when you barely know the other person. But with Becca still picking up the pieces from when her world was blown apart years ago and Brett just barely holding his together now, they begin to realize they have more in common than they ever could have imagined. When the line between real and pretend begins to blur, they are forced to answer the question: is this fake romance the realest thing in either of their lives?
Everyone knows I love rom-coms. But it's been a long time since I've read one like The Worst Best Man. I was laughing so hard, and the pranks had to be one of the best parts!

Carolina Santos was, unfortunately, left at the altar, but the runaway groom didn't feel like delivering the news, so he told his brother, Max, to tell Carolina. This didn't sit well with Max because he also might have been the cause for his brother running out on his wedding day.

Fast-forward and we have Carolina being an excellent wedding planner! She has the opportunity to pitch an idea to an amazing hotel chain. What she doesn't expect is meeting her ex-fiance, Andrew, and Max. She ended up acting like she didn't know either them; sadly, she had to work with one of them, and of course, she picked Max. What came out of it was some glorious pranking I was totally in for!

By the time Lina's through with me, I won't just be a shell of myself; no, I'll be a mutated version that wears V-neck cashmere sweaters, relaxes in Adirondack chairs, and chortles when someone tells a joke.

The romance was absolutely amazing. Max and Lina fit so well together. I especially loved how Max took everything in stride when it came to Lina pranking him all the time. Kudos to Max for being mature and accepting that he deserved all of these pranks coming to him.

"Let me in again, baby. Let me be the one who'll have your back. [...] The one who'll make you cry for the sappiest reasons."

Lina's family goes in the books of one of my top fave families! They remind me so much of my own family. It comes to show that Hispanics are loud and we are freaking proud of it! The author brought so much Brazilian culture to the book, which had me falling in love with Brazil. The food sounded absolutely delicious! I'm now wanting to plan a trip to Brazil and eat everything I can find there.

Overall, The Worst Best Man is hilarious, boisterous in the best way possible, full of pranks and a love so sweet and swoony, you will want to steal Max from Lina.

💕💕💕

ADEQUATE YEARLY PROGRESS
by Roxanna Elden
Genres: Contemporary, Fiction
Publication Date: February 11th 2020 by Atria Books
Format: eARC

Rating: ★★½
Goodreads Amazon
From the mundane to the insane, Adequate Yearly Progress captures the teaching experience with insight, humor, and heart.

Each year brings familiar educational challenges to Brae Hill Valley, a struggling urban high school in Texas. But the school’s teachers face plenty of challenges of their own. English teacher Lena Wright, a spoken-word poet with a deep love for her roots, can never seem to satisfy her students that she’s for real.

Hernan D. Hernandez is confident in front of his biology classes, yet tongue-tied around the woman he most wants to impress: namely, Lena. Down the hall, math teacher Maybelline Galang focuses on the numbers as she blocks out problems whose solutions aren’t so clear, while Coach Ray hustles his football team toward another winning season, at least on the field.

Recording it all is idealistic history teacher Kaytee Mahoney, whose blog gains new readers by the day but drifts ever further from her in-class reality.

And this year, a new celebrity superintendent is determined to leave his own mark on the school—even if that means shutting the whole place down. The fallout will shake up the teachers’ lives both inside and outside the classroom.
I really enjoyed this novel, mostly for the fact that I could relate to the teachers. If anyone wants to know what teachers go through, I highly suggest to pick up this book.

Unfortunately, I wasn't a big fan of it. Despite relating to the characters as teachers, I didn't care for their personal life--I was indifferent through it all. I tried to connect with them, but I just didn't care for them.

I expected more teaching dynamics, where teachers bounded together to fight this system against them, but in turn, I got a lot of the teachers' love life, an assistant banding up against the principal and another teacher. I believe if the book had focused on Kaytee, one of the newer teachers and the other teachers trying to help her out, giving their own tips, this book would have been more to my liking.

Also, this book had a lot of point of views. It was a surprise I didn't get lost, since the author was able to give a unique voice to each character, but at the same time, it made it seem all over the place. There were a lot of topics and what should have been the focus of the story ended up being brushed off.

"I've always said we should pay our top educators the way we pay our top professional athletes!"

Overall, Adequate Yearly Progress is an eye-opener on the teaching field. I loved that I got a few tips on teaching from it, and was able to see how I should be grateful of the school I work at and the students I have because it's not like I have it anywhere else.


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