Hi All! It’s Becky again. Anyone who knows me knows I have a special weakness for my alma mater The Ohio State University. I will love almost anything related to what many considering the best school ever. So, imagine my happiness when I’m browsing through Netgalley and I found “The Big F” by Maggie Ann Martin that is all about someone trying to get into my beloved school.
Danielle has had one goal in life…to get into Ohio State and she did it. She had her acceptance letter in hand and was ready to move on to campus but then she failed a class senior year and her acceptance has been revoked. Now, Danielle has to scramble to make a new plan but with help of her family, her best friend, an old crush, and a new friend she may find a better path then anything she had ever imagined.
This book is getting a lot of love on Goodreads and I’ve got to say I don’t get it. The basic premise of this book is great. Danielle is recent high school grad trying to find her place in the world just as her childhood crush returns and there is a little romantic reconnection. Sounds like the perfect start to a flirty fun book that I would normally love except that’s basically all there is in this book. I wasn’t particularly impressed by Danielle or her crush Luke. They just never felt real or made me care about them, their issues, or their relationship. I had a very similar response to Porter Kohl the new boy who may steal Danielle’s heart. He had a difficult past that alluded to but never really explained. What were all the issues with his parents and did they purposely name him something that was allusion to the famous song writer Cole Porter or did no one in the creation of the book notice this.
However, I may have been able to ignore the weak character development and way to familiar plot if I hadn’t been beyond annoyed about the the pages upon pages of inaccuracies about living in Cleveland area and The Ohio State University. I will admit this is a personal pet peeve of mine. It seems that many authors like to base their stories in my home state without really knowing that much about Ohio and I would be surprised if I was the only one that noticed the issues. First things first, the school is ‘The Ohio State University’ which means official letters from the school would not just say Ohio State. The “the” is part of the schools name and not just a weird quirk of alumni as implied in the book. Someone whose parents were alumni and was planning to attend the school should know this…it’s literally on tee-shirts. Secondly, community colleges in Ohio don’t have football teams. It just not something we do so it doesn’t make sense for Luke to attend a community college of a football scholarship. At some point in the book Danielle is considering transferring to Case Western Reserve University. Danielle failed one class in high school and calls herself a C student when referencing another class…um, she’s not getting into Case Western Reserve which is one of the most difficult school to get into in the state. Plus, I couldn’t figure out why the city Danielle lived in was fictitious but Porter is from a real city in the area. Individually, I would have thought “Oh, this is a first time author and they didn’t research well enough” but when everything is added together it made the book feel sloppy.
Bottomline: I’m sure there are some romance fans that will really love this book but I am not one of those people. The writing and characters didn’t work for me and the story was a little to familiar and followed a very obvious path so I recommend that readers beware before settling down to read “The Big F”.
Final Rating: 2 out of 5
I received this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.