Better Than the Movies by Lynn Painter

19 Mar, 2021 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

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

Better Than the Movies by Lynn Painter

Better Than the Movies

on March 18, 2021
Pages: 368
Format: ARC
Buy the BookGoodreads
In this rom-com about rom-coms, in the spirit of Kasie West and Jenn Bennett, a hopeless romantic teen attempts to secure a happily-ever-after moment with her forever crush, but finds herself reluctantly drawn to the boy next door.

Perpetual daydreamer Liz Buxbaum gave her heart to Michael a long time ago. But her cool, aloof forever crush never really saw her before he moved away. Now that he’s back in town, Liz will do whatever it takes to get on his radar—and maybe snag him as a prom date—even befriend Wes Bennet.

The annoyingly attractive next-door neighbor might seem like a prime candidate for romantic comedy fantasies, but Wes has only been a pain in Liz’s butt since they were kids. Pranks involving frogs and decapitated lawn gnomes do not a potential boyfriend make. Yet, somehow, Wes and Michael are hitting it off, which means Wes is Liz’s in.

But as Liz and Wes scheme to get Liz noticed by Michael so she can have her magical prom moment, she’s shocked to discover that she likes being around Wes. And as they continue to grow closer, she must reexamine everything she thought she knew about love—and rethink her own ideas of what Happily Ever After should look like.


I smiled throughout this entire book. It was perfect. Such a welcome, fuzzy, charming YA. There were laugh out loud and swoon worthy moments. Childhood friends/ enemies, Liz and Wes are vying for the perfect parking spot. They are constantly at each other with snarky, witty back and forth. Their friend group has known each other all their lives,and when Michael moves back to town, Liz Buxbaum is sure he is destined to be sure to her romantic hero. With a “Can’t Buy Me Love” vibe scheme going between Liz and Wes, they are determined she will get the prom date of her dreams.

Wes. Favorite YA character ever. In tune, keen sense of humor, honest. I was wary at first at all the changes he wants Liz to make to win her man, but he redeems himself over and over again. With deeper issues like grief over the loss of mother, step-parent relationships and lying, the author does a great job of keeping everything low key and seamlessly woven into an awesome story. Highly recommend this one! Prepare to laugh out loud! I am adding Lynn Painter to my “go to” author list. Amazing debut. Thank you Simon and Schuster.

Content and trigger warnings: cigar smoking by minors, drinking, loss of a parent, sneaking out , kissing, mild swearing.

About the Author

Lynn Painter lives with her husband and pack of wild children in Nebraska, where she is a weekly contributor to the Omaha World-Herald and an avid fan of napping. When working on a new book, she can often be found sound asleep on her office floor. Some might say she should grow up and stop randomly dozing off like she’s a toddler, but Lynn considers it part of her writing “process.”

Yeah – because that totally makes it legit.

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