Bad Girlfriend (First and Last #4) by Kirsten DeMuzio
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Source: ARC for Tour
Goodreads • Amazon • Smashwords
Brooke Mills has only ever wanted to be loved. The product of a teenage pregnancy and raised by her grandmother, Brooke went looking for love in all the wrong places. She has been the other woman or someone’s dirty little secret more times than she cares to admit. When Brooke’s questionable judgment lands her in the bed of her new neighbor, it’s the wakeup call she needs to change her ways. With the help of her friends, Brooke is determined to find a nice guy.
Adam Branigan is the new principal of the elementary school. Despite the way he and Brooke met, Adam knows there’s more to the beautiful redhead than meets the eye. He wants to be the guy to show Brooke that she deserves more than late night booty calls. But will outside pressures and past relationships conspire to tear them apart?
**This book is intended for a mature audience, age 18 and older, due to language and explicit content.
Bad Girlfriend follows Brooke, Poppy's best friend from Fourth Down, and Adam, the new elementary school principal and Brooke's grandmother's new tenant. Brooke has struggled with relationships in the past (as we got a glimpse of in Fourth Down) and has let herself get into many an unfortunate situation. An unintended one night stand with Adam serves as the catalyst for her attempts to change—to be more careful, considerate, and aware of what she deserves from a relationship. Adam himself feels up to that task and sets out to woo Brooke like he believes she deserves. To show her that she really is worth the effort.
I had an interesting relationship with Brooke's character—I didn't always love her choices (understatement) but I understood a lot of them. She's never had a solid relationship to look up to, and that has very obviously leached into her quest for one. She's so driven by her search for love that she doesn't really stop to consider where she's looking for it. But that really is all she wants—for someone to love and maybe take care of her a little.
Cue Adam, who reinforces that nerdy boys are the best. From the beginning he sees Brooke as out of his league (which is silly, but whatever), so he's determined to show her exactly what she should be expecting from her romantic endeavors. He's sweet, charming, a little awkward in the most endearing way. Adam is the kind of guy we all want—supportive, in it for the long haul, but still passionate and sexy.
The only reason this book wasn't at least 4 stars was the way others treated Brooke. Has she made some questionable decisions in her past relationships? Yes. Did she always act in a way that garnered respect? No. But this girl has the unofficial label of town harlot for sleeping with six guys. That just does not seem like that many for a 23 year-old in the grand scheme of things. It really got put in perspective when Lindsay (Just One Reason), who is now friends with Brooke through Poppy (everybody's meeting up!) and also happens to be the only character from out-of-town until Adam, has only slept with one less guy and gets no crap for it. So despite Brooke's flawed decision-making, it felt ridiculously unfair and made me a little angry at the town in general, and my rating suffered a little as a result.
Despite that one major sticking point, I really enjoyed Bad Girlfriend. It's a sweet, considerate romance, but not without a healthy dose of geeky-sexy. And I can totally get behind that! If you're a fan of NA contemporary and like your boys a little nerdy, be sure to check this one out!
I am an author of new adult and contemporary romance novels. My husband and I live in Columbus, Ohio with our two young daughters and happy golden retriever. When I’m not spending time with my family, I can be found doing one of my other favorite activities—writing, reading and napping.