Oh Boy: The Boy Series by Meg Cabot

I probably reread a few-a lot-of Meg Cabot’s books each year.  Meg’s books are like good comfort food.  And yes, I find that even if I have had a God awful week, and this week has been full of stress they’ll make me smile.  It’s good to know that whenever there’s no chocolate or if I don’t want to exercise I can always pull out a Cabot book and get the requisite endorphins from it.

Although, like I said in my previous Cabot binge some of the rereads are better than the others.  Fortunately, The Boy series was one of those series that held up better-save for the fact that they’re titles are so similar that I start getting them confused.  Really, I have probably referred to Boy Meets Girl as The Boy Next Door more than I’d liked to admit.  Though surprisingly, I don’t have the same problem with Every Boy’s Got One.  And to make things more confusing another boy book-The Boy is Back is going to be released later this year so I am going to be more confused than ever.

Whatever.

It’s another Meg Cabot book to read and by that time I’ll be depressed or need cheering up and like I said before her books are better for you than chocolate or wine.

Gossip columnist and single New York City girl Mel lives in the most exciting place in the world, yet she’s bored with her lovelife. But things get interesting fast when the old lady next door is nearly murdered.
Mel starts paying closer attention to her neighbors—what exactly is going on with the cute boy next door?
Has Mel found the love of her life—or a killer?

Source: GoodReads

In a lot of ways this is the best one in the series.  The reason why, the relationship is the most developed and I love the Trents.  Though, the Hertzogs are just as amusing but a lot more dysfunctional-and that’s saying something since Daddy Trent is in jail.

I think the style that this book is written in-emails, notes, phone messages, etc. really works well for it. I don’t know if it-or its sequels-would work well in any other style.  I often wonder if I would’ve like her vampire series better if it had been written in this style, because there is really something perfectly done that most authors never can get right but Meg Cabot does.

Yes, there are the typical Cabot tropes that are used throughout the book.  And yes, there are a lot of shaking your head this is totally unrealistic moments but I don’t care.   There is just so much charm in this book that it makes you smile throughout reading it.

The supporting characters aren’t that bad either and they do seem to have their own lives-well, some of them.  Some like Dolly Vargas are definitely one note characters, but their one note-ness isn’t bad at all.   I didn’t even mind the ditzy model character, Vivica, and her weirdo obsession with driftwood sculptures.

If you like cute light reads that will perk up your mood, you should pick this one up.  It’s not the most serious book by any means, but I wouldn’t want it to be serious.

Overall Rating: An A-.  I really liked it.  Yeah, there were some things that could’ve been developed and changed a bit but not much.  I highly recommend it.

Meet Kate Mackenzie. She:

– works for the T.O.D. (short for Tyrannical Office Despot, also known as Amy Jenkins, Director of the Human Resources Division at the New York Journal)
– is sleeping on the couch because her boyfriend of ten years refuses to commit
– can’t find an affordable studio apartment anywhere in New York City
– thinks things can’t get any worse.

They can. Because:

– the T.O.D. is making her fire the most popular employee in the paper’s senior staff dining room
– that employee is now suing Kate for wrongful termination, and
– now Kate has to give a deposition in front of Mitch Hertzog, the scion of one of Manhattan’s wealthiest law families,who embraces everything Kate most despises … but also happens to have a nice smile and a killer bod.

The last thing anybody — least of all Kate Mackenzie — expects to find in a legal arbitration is love. But that’s the kind of thing that can happen when…

Boy meets girl.

Source: GoodReads

Back in the days before I found out I could not eat wheat without bad things happening to me-don’t ask-in addition to reading this book I used it as a cookbook.  Since the days I have been forced to make bake goods with glutten free flour and xantheum gum (I so did not spell that right) this book has collected dust a bit but I just pulled it out for its story and remembered why I liked it so much in the first place.

Plot wise, this is in a lot of ways my favorite.  I like Kate and Mitch too, but the actual development of when they got together was a little too rapid for my liking.

Seriously, they only went out on like two dates and slept together like once when he asks her to move in.  And yes, this is a Meg Cabot book and you know they’re going to live HEA.  But you would think after being homeless because of a break up Kate would be a little more hesitant to move in with a guy so soon again.

You know what, I really don’t care because at the end of the day I still love this book.  Like I said in the previous while the Trent family is lovably eccentric with a couple of relatives in jail, the Hertzogs are just so dysfunctional and not all of them-save for Mitch, Stacey, and Sean are likable.  In fact, I pretty much wanted to stuff Stewart and his mother’s head in a toilet throughout most of the novel, especially in that bit where they wanted to send Sean to a conversion camp.

So, so, wrong.

But I like the fact that the fact that good people can have horrible families were addressed and there were realistic consequences for everyone-meaning the TOD marries Stewie and they live miserably ever after.

Oh yes, the TOD how could I forget about her.  She is probably one of the most despised characters that Cabot has created to date.  I don’t think Lana even when she was in full brat mode was this bad.  The character would fit right at home in that basket full of deplorables.  I think that’s all that needs to be said about her.  But wow.

I think having her be such a horrible person was in a lot of ways what made the book and its whole story so good.  You wanted this character to get her just desserts and she did in a fairly realistic way.

Overal Rating: B+.  Like I said, enjoyed it and I did like Kate and Mitch’s chemistry but man did they get together fast.  So, so, fast.  Also, if you can eat wheat try those recipes.

Cartoonist Jane Harris is delighted by the prospect of her first-ever trip to Europe. But it’s hate at first sight for Jane and Cal Langdon, and neither is too happy at the prospect of sharing a villa with one another for a week–not even in the beautiful and picturesque Marches countryside. But when Holly and Mark’s wedding plans hit a major snag that only Jane and Cal can repair, the two find themselves having to put aside their mutual dislike for one another in order to get their best friends on the road to wedded bliss–and end up on a road themselves … one neither of them ever expected.

Source: GoodReads

This book has gotten better with reread. I  remember liking, but not loving it the first time I read it but surprisingly I liked it a whole, whole, lot this time around.  Cal and Jane have some fantastic banter. The love hate vibes were pretty much spot on and reached the level where I can insert a Pride and Prejudice gif without cringing.

Yeah, they did get together sort of suddenly towards the end but in a lot of ways I’m sort of glad it was sudden because the hate/love banter was so good.

The setting is also divine.  I really like it when Cabot does Europe.  The first Queen of Babble in my opinion is the best in part because of the setting.  She describes Italy just as well as  rural France, though I do wonder about the wi-fi signal at the villa.  Because really, they have that good wi-fi in the mountains in the middle of nowhere in Italy.  Because I remember my wi-fi being bad in my urban Ireland apartment.

Whatever.

I did like how while we moved away from The New York Journal, there were still references to the paper and the previous books.  It was just enough of a departure where it wasn’t a complete departure and there were Easter eggs for fans of the previous book.

So yes, I liked it.  As much as the other books….yes but in a different way.

Overall Rating: B+

 

 

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One thought on “Oh Boy: The Boy Series by Meg Cabot

  1. I’m currently writing a serious non-fiction book about mental health so I enjoy reading light fluffy books to clear my head. I’m rereading Cabot’s boy series because I read her latest “Thr Boy Is Back” and the name Dolly leapt out at me and then Pete(?). I realized she was a character in (uh… like you, I get the names confused) the one with TOD and the terrible family. That’s when I realized that the brother-in-law was connected to the family in the other book. It’s got me to thinking about that NY Journal universe.
    Do you know of where I can find a map or tree of something of all the connected characters. Google brought me to your site and I LOVE IT!
    Your reviews are adorable.

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