The Fine Art of Truth or Dare by Melissa Jensen had a lot of positives and negatives for me. I loved a lot of things about it – and was less than impressed by others. Ultimately though, the love story was definitely really cute and satisfying. (Ooo ooo – plus! There were two nods to Project Runway.)
Melissa Jensen was able to give Ella and Alex really great chemistry! I loved – loved – their interactions. She blended the unpopular girl and popular guy story brilliantly. Most of the time, this plot doesn’t go well. It never really feels genuine (since it rarely happens in real life). In The Fine Art of Truth or Dare, it definitely works! And works well.
I stood on my toes, he bent down a little, and we fit together pretty well.
Isn’t that awesome? I love how it is their differences that made them so compatible. Most stories have the couples being a “perfect fit” or “feeling like I was made for his arms.” Alex is like a foot taller than Ella – and who gives a flying monkey? They’re perfect anyway.
I also loved Ella’s two best friends. They were fantastic! She has a lot of great people in her life, actually. Her family owns an Italian restaurant and they are always loud and together and fabulous. The side characters were really rich and fun in this one, definitely.
Unfortunately – basically everything else about the book was very meh. Ella has this obsession with Edward Willing, the 19th century artist her school is named after. It was funny at the beginning of the book – but I got bored with it really quickly. Way too much of that.
Also, Alex didn’t get enough characterization to suit me. The emphasis was definitely on Ella – but I wanted more Alex! Why did he stay with his jerk girlfriend for so long? How does he really feel about his rich family? He definitely remains a man of mystery. Just not totally in a good way.
Still – even though I I had some issues with The Fine Art of Truth or Dare, I loved the characters and the romance. Melissa Jensen has definitely written a cute and quick read! I recommend it if you’re a fan of contemporary young adult romance for sure.