The Mut-Read Book Review: Jenna & Jonah’s Fauxmance by Emily Franklin & Brendan Halpin

by Samuel Horton on

Jenna & Jonah’s Fauxmance by Emily Franklin & Brendan Halpin

Publisher: Walker Books

Release date: February 2011

Pages: 240

Summary: Charlie and Fielding have played the parts of Jenna and Jonah on a family TV show for three years. Their characters have been in love forever, and the two actors have been forced to pretend they are in a relationship in real life, too. But the truth is, Charlie and Fielding hate each other with a passion. So when Fielding is falsely accused of being gay, he jumps at the opportunity to escape his fauxmance with Charlie. But then the pair is thrown back together to reenact a Shakespeare play, they find out that their hatred for each other might be just the opposite…

My thoughts: When I first read the back of Jenna & Jonah’s Fauxmance, I assumed it would be a watered-down, sugared-up version of Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. I mean, read that title and tell me that’s not the first thing that pops into your head. Fortunately, Jenna & Jonah’s Fauxmance held its own, and was much more enjoyable than I anticipated.

The book is told in two different perspectives—one written by the female author (Charlie) and the other written by the male author (Aaron/Fielding). This writing style really worked for the story, because it allowed the reader to see how well the feelings of the two characters matched up. The two authors really did a great job of perfecting the banter between Charlie and Fielding, and though it’s pretty obvious that the two will eventually end up together, the journey they take to get there is all kinds of fun.

One thing that was especially interesting about Jenna & Jonah was the incorporation of the celebrity lifestyle. It’s not all expensive clothing and daily trips to Pinkberry for Charlie and Fielding. Their work is portrayed with extreme realism—the authors bring up the long hours, the tough-love agents, and the paparazzi. Charlie and Fielding also learn a bit about acting on stage, something that I personally have a lot of experience with. I felt that the authors of Jenna & Jonah did an excellent job of not sugarcoating how difficult theater actually is.

Charlie and Fielding were fun characters, and I enjoyed their internal struggles with both personal obstacles and their feelings for each other. They both change quite a bit from the first pages of the book to the last. The fact that they grew as people over the course of the story made Jenna & Jonah’s Fauxmance more than just a love story.

Fans of chick lit will easily devour Jenna & Jonah’s Fauxmance: it’s a light, fun read full of snarky comebacks and mixed emotions. I definitely enjoyed it much more than I thought I would.

4/5 stars

Written by: Samuel Horton