“He’d thought about writing a song for Mia to express the way he felt about her, but he understood now that their kiss was his song, his promise. It was all he would ever have to say.”
Title: Mia and the Bad Boy
Author: Lisa Burstein
Series: Backstage Pass #2
Publication: May 19, 2015 by Entangled Teen
This good girl’s about to meet her match…
Ryder Brooks is living the dream—he’s famous, loved by millions of girls, and miserable. All he really wants is to write his own music, not Seconds to Juliet’s sugary sweet pop. In order to do that, though, the “bad boy” of the band will have to play by the rules. And that includes behaving with his new—and super cute—über-good-girl tutor.
Mia Reyes is in fangirl heaven. Tutoring her favorite member of her favorite band? It’s a dream come true…until it turns into a complete nightmare. Ryder is nothing like she thought. He’s crude, arrogant, and pretty much a total jerk. And the worst part? She’s roped into pretending to be his girlfriend so that no one finds out he’s being tutored. Fake kisses, plenty of PDA, and even sharing his hotel room…
But sometimes even the baddest of bad boys needs a little redemption.
I liked the idea of this book, though the more I read the more cliché the story became. Originally, I was very excited and eager to read through the book – despite the underwhelming title. The story line is one giant cliché in itself, a good girl meets a bad boy and then does things she is not supposed to do. I did like the book, though. Despite the predictability of it all, it was written very well which made reading it a lot easier. If the writing had been poor, I probably would not have finished the book. Now, I am not trying to write a bad review by any means – I just hate the fact that this was a story I have seen a million times before. I love original ideas, but Mia and the Bad Boy was just a simple retelling of an overdone plot.
Though I dislike the overdone clichés, I still enjoyed the book as a whole. The characters were interesting, very predictable and silly, but interesting all the same. I did love Ryder, I actually enjoyed his character much more than Mia. The book is told from their point of view in alternating chapters, which I am growing to love more with the increasing amount of books I read being written this way. Sometimes, that dual point of view can really drag the story down, but this was one of the few that I actually liked. Now, as to characters.
Ryder, I absolutely loved Ryder – as I have previously said. This is mostly because I have a soft spot in my heart for the bad boy in the stories, sometimes I even end up liking the villains more than the protagonists (etc. I absolutely love Sebastian from TMI), but in this book the bad boy is the main male protagonist. Now, while the bad boy character was extremely stereotypical with the harsh facade and soft heart within, I felt that Ryder was formulated and put together so well that it didn’t bother me as much as Mia did. At least Ryder’s character was consistent. His chapters were my absolute favorite for the same reason I usually love the bad boy of the story, both his dialogue and inner monologue were full of sarcasm, smart ass remarks, and obvious dislike for his job. I loved that part the most about him, he loves performing but he hates the way he has to perform. It is another cliché, but once again, I did not mind it because of his point of view. I also absolutely love the name Ryder, so I applaud Lia Burstein for choosing it.
Next, we have Mia. Mia is the stereotypical, good-girl, nerd who is bribed into being Ryder’s tutor for a month on the tour. I loved her at first, she was a hardcore fangirl who was determined to hide it so as not to make herself look like a dork – as a hardcore fangirl who has met a few of my favorite authors, I can relate. But, that was where the ability to relate ended. When one thinks of the good girl/nerd, the last thing that comes to mind is someone who is extremely snarky. Now, I don’t know if that aspect was done deliberately to try and dispel the stereotypes, but the product was an inconsistent character who was very hard to understand, and therefore relate with. I consider myself somewhat of a nerd, so I usually love reading from the point of view of someone who is a slight know-it-all (Clare from Morganville Vampires), but Mia was not what I would consider a nerd. She was a nerd in one aspect only, and that was her apparent love for studying and the chaste appearance her parents forced upon her – but it seemed at the end of the book she didn’t even care about studying anymore. Every single time it was brought up throughout, it felt as if it were only to kill time and space the book did not have. It was a very short read, and I think that those pages of “studying” could have been put to better use to expand upon the relationships of the characters. What about the rest of the band members? The only reason we know anything at all about the rest of the band is because Mia is completely obsessed with them. We do get a little here and there from Ryder, but not enough to make them an important part of the story – which they were, considering the entire book takes place during their tour.
Overall, I did like the book despite my problems with specific aspects. The predictability took away a lot of the fun, but the writing really made up for it in my opinion. Mia and the Bad Boy by Lisa Burstein is a very quick, heartwarming love story about a good girl going bad. The romance was sweet and fairly exciting, but the real star of the book was Ryder – the bad boy. I would recommend this book for fourteen and older because it contains cursing, underage drinking, sexual situations, and lots of swooning that could many anyone younger have a heart attack or heat stroke. If you are looking for a swoon worthy romance, this is the book to read.