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November 10, 2012

Review: Dante's Girl by Courtney Cole

Dante's Girl
Title: Dante's Girl
Author: Courtney Cole
Publication date: June 24, 2012
Publisher: Lakehouse Press
Genre(s): Young Adult (Contemporary)
Challenges: Contemporary
Source: NetGalley
Format: Digital ARC
Pages: 356
I have spent every summer since I was ten years old with my father in London. Every summer, since I was ten years old, has been uneventful and boring.
Until this year.

And this year, after a freak volcanic eruption strands me far from home, I have learned these things:

1. I can make do with one outfit for three days before I buy new clothes.
2. If I hear the phrase, “You’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto,” even one more time, I might become a homicidal maniac.
3. I am horribly and embarrassingly allergic to jellyfish.
4. I am in love with Dante Giliberti, who just happens to be the beautiful, sophisticated son of the Prime Minister of a Mediterranean paradise.
5. See number four above. Because it brings with it a whole slew of problems and I’ve learned something from every one of them.

Let’s start with the fact that Dante’s world is five light-years away from mine. He goes to black-tie functions and knows the Prime Minister of England on a first name basis. I was born and raised on a farm in Kansas and wear cut-off jeans paired with cowboy boots. See the difference?

But hearts don’t care about differences. Hearts want what they want. And mine just wants to be Dante’s girl.

My heart just might be crazy.
Dante's Girl sounds like a cute contemporary with my favorite sub-genre: foreign country setting. Reece is boarding a plane from Amsterdam to london, where she will spend the summer with her father. She bumps into this ultra hot guy, Dante, and she is smitten. Turns out he's on her plane and when a plane on the runway gets burnt Dante takes her with him and his security agents (huh?) to a small island. Apparently he is the island's prime minister's son. I personally found it so random that she would just go with him. Have you ever heard of thugs? mafia? kidnappers? human trafficking? How can she just up and go on an airplane to a whole different place without even letting her parents or anyone else know. Talk about being level headed and responsible eh?
I liked Dante, he was such a gentleman but their romance developed too fast. So when a childhood friend of Dante shows up and basically takes out her claws at Reece, I was happy. I thought we would get a bit of drama with this new addition but nothing much happens. They liked each other from the beginning and shows it to each other, so any other addition in the mix felt a bit too forced in my opinion. Also her suddenly ending up working at Dante's family's olive ranch was so out of the blue. This can not ever happen in real life, the circumstances felt a bit absurd and I rolled my eyes a ton and cracked up a lot. There was also a conspiracy being plotted thrown in the book and I felt that was really unnecessary. However I have to say, I really liked the ending of Dante's Girl, that is something that I can believe! also Courtney's writing was hilarious but Reece felt a bit childish at times. What 16 year old says Sweet Baby Monkeys instead of Oh my god? or *gasp*?  I am saying all these things I've had issues with, and while they were a lot, I still ended up reading the book and enjoying it. While it is not a memorable contemporary, it was still a good read overall. 


  1. I really loved this one :3 But I guess everyone's opinion is different. Great review!!!

    Secrets of Lost Words

  2. I've heard of this book before and I really liked the synopsis, so I'll have to read it soon. Although, it wasn't as memorable, I am keeping an open mind based on all the things you did like about it! Brilliant review, Juhina! :D Glad you (somewhat LOL ;p) enjoyed it!

    ~ Maida @ Literary Love Affair

  3. I read an excerpt of this book and thought it was nice-- it's too bad that nothing much happens though. And I'm not a fan of unnecessary sub-plots.

    Nicely reviewed Juhina.

  4. Sweet baby monkeys? Ha! sounds like something my mother would say. ;) This sounds like a decent read overall even though you didn't love it. Great review!

  5. This sounds kinda cute and sweet :) I think this would be something that I'd grab when I wanna escape into a fun contemporary romance. Thanks for sharing, Juhina!

  6. This one is sweet and cute if a little predictable. Thanks for sharing.


  7. Uh, oh! I got on a blog tour for the next book in this series. I so hope I like this one better than you did. I like the sound of the description. It sounds a little like a Harlequin Presents romance, but for teens. In other words...escapist and fun, but improbable.

  8. Aww, I was hoping you like this book. I adored it! But then again, I'm a sucker for romance even if it doesn't seem realistic. Thanks for being honest.

  9. When this came out first I thought it sounded like quite a fun read but then it became apparent that the romance developed almost instantly and it turned me right off. But now you have me wanting to know the ending :) I don't know if I could drag myself through the rest of the book though just to get there. Great review Juhina.

  10. I'm reading this right now and am over half way through. I didn't feel like the romance developed too fast. Yeah, maybe they aren't IN LOVE, but I mean when you're 16 and you like a guy and he likes you the kissing can start within a day or two and they knew each other a few days so it wasn't something that bothered me. I actually wanted them to kiss SOONER.
    I know the plot is improbable, but I like to dream and as a teen I would have dreamed about this happening to me so it's definitely not a negative for me.
    I love Reece's voice. I think the SweetBabyMonkeys thing is actually cool. I think it just shows her personality.

    Now, I feel like I should be annoyed about all her blabbing on about how stinking hot and godlike he is, but I'm not really... so I guess sometimes things that I think would bother me, don't. It just depends on the books.

    I feel like I'm pointing out how I feel so different from you about your negatives, but so I should say that while those things aren't bothering me, I'm not WOW'ed yet. It's not a 5 star book by any means and maybe more like a 3.5 at this point. I'm just not sure what it is that's making me not love LOVE it. So anyway... sorry about the long winded comment.

    1. Okay, I finished and I 'get' more of what you were saying. The 'in lust' or whatever for more than half of the book was good but them being 'in love' further in seemed a bit fast. It didn't really bother me, but I can see how some wouldn't love that. And I'm surprised it didn't bother me more.

      I ended up liking this more because of the end and I decided to give it 4 stars. I think that Dante was maybe a bit TOO perfect, but I can't say it's really a negative... Anyway, I wish I had books like this when I was teen! This was the sort of stuff I DREAMED of!

  11. I'm glad you really liked this one! It sounds soooo cute! I'm sorry Reece was a little childish at times though from your description I can understand why you would think that :)

  12. I really enjoyed this one. It was just such a cute, sweet, fun summer read. And it just flew by. I can see where you are coming from though at the time I was reading it none of those things really stood out and bugged me.

  13. I still need to read this one. I read the first chapter and it seemed really funny. Some of the things you mentioned do seem ridiculous but I might over look them for a cute romance.

  14. I figured it'd be for a younger audience than 20 and so it'd naturally have a somewhat childish plot. But it's still good to see that the book is hilarious and one can expect to have a good time while reading it.

    Great review, Juhina!

    Sana @ artsy musings of a bibliophile

    P.S. Check out my Blogoversary Giveaway!