Review – The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) by Amy Spalding

Posted March 29, 2016 by Emily in review / 0 Comments

I received this book for free from NOVL in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review – The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) by Amy Spalding
TITLE: The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions)
AUTHOR: Amy Spalding
Publisher: Poppy
PUBLICATION DATE: April 5th 2016
Source: NOVL
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
RATING: 3.5 Stars

A ridiculously cute, formerly-famous new guy dropping into your life? It's practically every girl's dream.

But not Jules McCallister-Morgan's.

I realize that on paper I look like your standard type-A, neurotic, overachiever. And maybe I am. But I didn't get to be the editor of my school's long-revered newspaper by just showing up*. I have one main goal for my senior year-early acceptance into my first choice Ivy League college-and I will not be deterred by best friends, moms who think I could stand to "live a little," or boys.

At least, that was the plan before I knew about Alex Powell**.

And before Alex Powell betrayed me***.

I know what you're thinking: Calm down, Jules. But you don't understand. This stuff matters. This is my life. And I'm not going down without a fight.


* Okay, I sort of did. But it's a sore subject.

** I mean, I guess everyone knows about Alex Powell? Two years ago, you couldn't go anywhere without hearing about viral video boy band sensation Chaos 4 All. Two years ago, Alex Powell was famous.

***Some people think I'm overreacting. But this. Means. War.

Filled with romance, rivalry, and passive-aggressive dog walking, Amy Spalding delivers a hilariously relatable high school story that's sure to have you falling for The New Guy.


The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) is a cute novel about Jules, a high achiever, and her struggles in the beginning of her senior year. Some of those struggles just so happen to be caused by the new guy, Alex, a former boy band member.

The New Guy does a great job weaving Jules’ story together. The first few months of her last year in high school are not dominated by a single issue and this novel does a fantastic job fitting them all together. Filled with humor and drama, The New Guy captures some of the struggles seniors face, especially the stress of applying to colleges, competing with other students, and maintaining relationships (both romantic and platonic). And even though I may never face the same exact problems as Jules (who can say they befriended a former boy band member?), there are many parallels that can be drawn between hers and mine.

I also liked the subtle messages The New Guy sends. The best part? The fact that none of it felt forced or intentional. Jules has two moms and is constantly breaking stereotypes, especially ones involving gender roles. It’s really inspiring and nice to see in YA.

Speaking of Jules, I enjoyed reading about her. As a senior myself, I can relate to her in many ways. She is this independent, intelligent teenager, but she is still a bit insecure. Which, to me, makes her more relatable and seem less robotic. That being said, I became a little disappointed in her as the story went on. She was a bit too petty and boy crazy for my liking. But she made up for it! 🙂 In the end, I think it is her flaws that make me like her so much.

As much as I liked reading The New Guy, there are a few things I didn’t quite enjoy. Some parts of the timeline were a bit off from reality. In addition, I think Jules has too many facepalm worthy moments. And I don’t even want to talk about the second-degree embarrassment.

In Conclusion…

The New Guy is a cute, and humorous read. With a strong main character, it does a decent job of representing life as a high school senior and the struggles it brings. That being said, as well as it tells Jules’ story, it does contain a lot of second-degree embarrassment and boy obsessiveness.

Final Rating
4 Stars
4 Stars
3.5 Stars
3.5 Stars
3.5 Stars
Overall: 3.7


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