Title: The Boyfriend App
Publication: April 30, 2013
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
Get the app. Get the guy.
From debut author Katie Sise comes a romantic comedy with a tech twist
Computer-whiz Audrey McCarthy feels most at home in a tech lab, surrounded by her fellow geeks. Once popular and fearless, she hasn't been the same since her dad died. And her ex-best friend, gorgeous queen bee Blake Dawkins, has turned into her worst nightmare. Audrey is counting the minutes until high school is over and she can get the hell out of Dodge and go to college-that is, if she can find a scholarship.
So when Public Corporation, a giant tech company, announces a contest for the best app developed by a high schooler-with $200,000 in prize money-Audrey is spurred to action. She comes up with an idea so simple, yet so brilliant, she can't believe it hasn't been done: the Boyfriend App. With a simple touch of the screen, romance blooms among the unlikeliest couples in high school, and people start to take notice. But it's not quite enough.
To beat out the competition, Audrey will have to dig deeper. And she does-right into a scandal that would rock Public to its core. Suddenly the Boyfriend App lands Audrey where she never expected to be: in the middle of the limelight, passionately kissed by the hottest guys in school, causing complete and utter mayhem. But can it bring her true love?
This is a good story about friendship and how some friends aren't meant to be in your life forever. Life can change the way someone you trust treats you and how you respond to that treatment. Audrey knows this first hand her ex-best friend Blake has pretty much given her the cold shoulder. Blake believes that Audrey somehow betrayed her and when Audrey really needs her, Blake becomes cruel in the worst way. Audrey does her best to stay off her radar but Blake is determined to make high school this year a living hell. On top of all this Audrey worries about how she will pay for college and then one day she hears about this contest to create an app and the winner will with receive a huge prize that about makes her heart stop. Not only would it pay her tuition but give her family much needed breathing room financially. As her app gains in popularity, trouble is not too far from Audrey and these aren't the high school politics anymore but bigger sharks that may just bite her in the bum. Can she survive the big waters or will she completely wipe out?
I really enjoyed this book; it has good character development and found myself rooting for Audrey to succeed in the contest. Aidan is my favorite he has a shyness to him that is endearing. I also liked how supportive he is of Audrey when she needs it most. Blake is my least favorite character, she's infuriating with her superior attitude and how she looks down on the very people she envies but she's supposed to have everything. I liked that this wasn't just about the relationships but the coding terminology and how Audrey goes about creating and testing the app was pretty cool.
The Boyfriend App will make you laugh, smile and frown. This story is a good example of how people will be all for you when you are famous and they can profit from it but as soon as you fall they turn their backs. Overall, the characters are good. I liked how the writing and plot moves and the setting fits the parameters of the story; high school. I would recommend this to teens 14 and up, looking for something less paranormal and more real world.
Interview with Author Katie Sise
Tell us about Katie Sise and why we should read the Boyfriend App?
I’m a New York City-based author, jewelry designer, TV host, mom, wife, sister, daughter, friend, coffee-lover, dog-lover, and of course, book lover! The Boyfriend App is my debut novel, and I couldn’t be more excited! The Boyfriend App is a fun story with high stakes that unfolds in our smartphone-obsessed world. (I include myself among the obsessed!) If you read it, I hope you’ll have fun hating the “bad guys,” and that you’ll fall in love with the main character and route for her along her adventure. And I hope that I entertain you for the hours you’re reading, because if I’ve done that, I feel like I’ve done my job!
When did you realize that Audrey"s story had to be told?
I was a few chapters in when I felt like I really understood Audrey. That’s when it clicked: that’s when I felt like I had to keep going. I needed to know how this girl was going to be okay in the end.
You taught yourself how to make jewelry, is there a piece that you absolutely treasure the most or has sentimental value?
One of the pieces I treasure the most is a silver necklace I made with a small white tusk charm that Kate Winslet bought. I was so obsessed with her as a teenager. Titanic changed my life when I was eighteen! It really did! Titanic and Romeo and Juliet—note the Leonardo DiCaprio theme—made me want to tell stories and live a creative life. So when Kate Winslet bought that necklace from me about ten years after I’d seen Titanic 100 times as a teenager, I felt so sentimental about it. It really meant something.
Technology seems to be an important aspect in the Boyfriend App, did you have to do much research? If so, what types of resources did you use?
I had to do a ton of research. I worked with a brilliant computer programmer named Jason Scalia on almost all of the computer language you’ll read in the book. Then, as far as app-building, I was helped immensely by Brian Morrison and Noah Harlan. I was very grateful. I couldn’t have done it without them.
What do you think are the key elements to creating great romantic chemistry between characters?
Oh man. I wish I knew all of them. But I think creating some buildup is always nice. And to let there be moments when the characters get closer and really make steps toward being together, but then something happens to get in their way. (Just like it does in real life sometimes.)
Why do you think mean girls feel that they have the power to rule?
I think anybody who acts like Blake and her crew don’t feel good about themselves. That’s why Aidan says to Audrey: “They’re mean because it makes them feel better about their sucky lives. What a crap way to exist, right?”
What's your favorite piece of technology that you can't live without?
Any app that helps me with directions. I hate driving when I don’t know where I’m going!
If you were stuck on elevator with a fictional character, who would it be?
Jack Dawson from Titanic. Swoon.
Is there a question you wished interviewers would ask you?
Actually, you asked it! I like when someone asks why they should read The Boyfriend App, or what I hope they’ll feel while reading it :)
About the Author: Katharine “Katie” Sise is a New York City based author, jewelry designer and television host. Years ago, at age twenty-four— after dropping a rare and very expensive bottle of champagne on her way to deliver it to Robert De Niro’s table—she realized she needed a way to fund her acting and writing career that didn’t involve balancing a tray full of cocktails. That fall, she taught herself to make jewelry and launched Katharine Sise Jewelry. Within a few months, Lucky Magazine called her a “Designer to Watch” and her company appeared in every major fashion magazine—including Vogue, W, Elle, Self, Lucky, InStyle, Bazaar, Allure, Us Weekly, People, In Touch, Page Six Magazine, Real Simple, FN, Life and Style, Teen Vogue, Seventeen, Women’s Wear Daily, Marie Claire and Glamour. Before she knew it, her celebrity clientele included Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, Kelly Ripa, Ellen Pompeo, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Beyonce Knowles, Anne Hathaway and Drew Barrymore.
Katharine has been profiled on dozens of online fashion and lifestyle outlets including Forbes.com, Elle.com, InStyle.com, People.com, Sweet, The Huffington Post and The New York Post. Her jewelry has appeared on television shows such as The View, Live with Regis and Kelly, E! News, Good Day New York, Full Frontal Fashion, Movie and a Makeover, The O.C., Brothers and Sisters and Gossip Girl. While Katharine was chatting with the ladies from The View, one of her necklaces broke on air and fell from her neck to her lap because she didn’t spend enough time getting the clasp right. That moment is preserved, forever, on a DVD at her parents’ house.
Katharine has designed jewelry for national campaigns like Vera Wang, Gap and Keds. In 2009, Target launched Katharine Sise for Target.
Katharine has worked as a fashion and lifestyle consultant, appearing on-air for networks like HSN, Oxygen, Discovery Channel, CNBC and ABC’s Good Morning America. For eighteen months, Katharine co-hosted a live monthly television show for The Home Shopping Network. She also appeared as The Daily Special’s resident style expert.
Katharine’s first book, Creative Girl: The Ultimate Guide for Turning Talent and Creativity into a Real Career (Perseus/Running Press) hit shelves in September of 2010. Creative Girl is written for every woman who wants to make her living in the creative world, whether in an office job or at the helm of her own business. The book is an encouraging and practical take on how to make a living doing what you love.
Katharine’s first novel, The Boyfriend App, will be published by HarperCollins Balzer + Bray on April 30, 2013. The Boyfriend App tells the story of a girl who, in order to win a scholarship offered by a secretly-evil global computing corporation, invents an app that makes any boy fall madly in love with her, with chaotic results.
Katharine has a BA in Film, Television and Theater from The University of Notre Dame. She lives in New York City with her family.
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