Unlucky in love

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 08 June, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 08 June, 2003, 12:00am

IF YOUR LOVE life going well or is it a complete disaster? Have you already found that special somebody? Perhaps you have your eye on someone and are planning your first move. Good luck! We all want to find Miss or Mr Right and put a lot of effort into the chase. But sometimes it all feels like an uphill struggle.

Will is your average teenager who has suddenly become aware of the opposite sex. He has a fun personality, considers himself reasonably good-looking and knows exactly what he wants. You would think that girls would be lining up to go out with him. Wrong. Will is popular with girls, but they don't see him as boyfriend material. He just can't seem to get girls to realise that he would be the perfect date.

Poor old Will is nearly 15, and has never had a girlfriend. When Barney, his best mate, starts going out with Zoe, things get really desperate. There is only one thing Will can do to hang onto his credibility. He knows he can't just conjure up a girlfriend out of thin air. Or can he? Desperate times call for desperate measures. Will decides to invent a girlfriend.

Most of us make up little white lies about our lives from time to time. But Will goes the full nine yards and gets himself an imaginary girlfriend. He finds a photo of Hannah, his dad's partner's beautiful niece, and tells everyone at school that she is his new girlfriend.

As Will's reputation as a ladies' man blossoms, the pressure to produce the real Hannah increases. Making up the perfect girlfriend seemed a good idea at first, but soon starts to look as if everything is heading for disaster.

Pete Johnson's Faking It is a funny and believable story of an ordinary boy's heroic efforts to understand that most complex of subjects - the opposite sex. The quirky tale will strike a chord with readers of both sexes and all ages because it is so amusing and well-observed. We have all been there or are about to head in that direction.

Teen fiction about problems with the opposite sex is usually told from a female point of view, but in Faking It, Johnson cleverly reverses the roles. Here it is the male who gets himself in a mess when Cupid's arrow hits. Told in a diary format, Will's story is constantly alive and entertaining as the poor boy hurtles towards inevitable disaster.

Faking It is a wonderful read that will put a knowing smile on your face in the beginning, and keep it there until the very last page.

Faking It

By Pete Johnson

Published by Puffin Books

ISBN 0 141 31542 3

John Millen can be contacted on MillenBookshelf@aol.com