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Publishers Weekly

As a new requirement for graduation, the senior class of East Columbus High School must complete a yearlong “marriage education” course, in which randomly assigned couples undergo a mock wedding and are forced to spend time in shared activities outside school. Outspoken Fiona, a social outcast, is paired up with Todd, a “no-necked Neanderthal” and boyfriend to Fiona’s longtime nemesis, Amanda. Adding insult to injury, cheerleader Amanda’s new faux-husband is Fiona’s crush of nine years, Gabe. While the basic premise lacks some plausibility, the hard-won friendship between Fiona and Todd, which moves from mutual disgust to mutual respect, is the heart of the story (during their escalating prank war, Fiona pranks Todd by taping a pudding-and meat-filled diaper on him at a dance, only to see he’s impressed). As in the copy of Pride and Prejudice that Fiona reads, there are unexpected twists of romance throughout, and readers may be pleasantly surprised by how things turn out. Debut author Walker breathes fresh life into a familiar theme, with an entertaining journey for a sassy heroine with heart.