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Hundred Oaks #6

Jesse's Girl

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Everyone at Hundred Oaks High knows that career mentoring day is a joke. So when Maya Henry said she wanted to be a rock star, she never imagined she’d get to shadow *the* Jesse Scott, Nashville’s teen idol.

But spending the day with Jesse is far from a dream come true. He’s as gorgeous as his music, but seeing all that he’s accomplished is just a reminder of everything Maya’s lost: her trust, her boyfriend, their band, and any chance to play the music she craves. Not to mention that Jesse’s pushy and opinionated. He made it on his own, and he thinks Maya’s playing back up to other people’s dreams. Does she have what it takes to follow her heart—and go solo?

302 pages, Kindle Edition

First published July 7, 2015

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About the author

Miranda Kenneally

19 books4,192 followers
Growing up in Tennessee, Miranda Kenneally dreamed of becoming an Atlanta Brave, a country singer (cliché!), or a UN interpreter. Instead she writes, and works for the State Department in Washington, D.C., where George W. Bush once used her shoulder as an armrest. Miranda loves Twitter, Star Trek and her husband.

Note: I don't answer direct messages, but do answer questions on Goodreads and Twitter. Please feel free to check in with me there!

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 751 reviews
Profile Image for Miranda Kenneally.
Author 19 books4,192 followers
December 27, 2014
I'm marking my own book as read so I can get closer to meeting my 2014 reading challenge! #noshame
500 reviews2,411 followers
July 26, 2015
Instead of writing my usual review, I've decided to write a letter to Jesse's Girl. If only books could receive, read and respond to letters...

*clears throat* Ahem. Dear Jesse's Girl,

Gosh darn it, you were a fabulous book. But you already know that, obviously. I just wanted to let you know that you made me swoon, laugh, smile, and feel tingles all over.

You made me cry, too. Typically I cry because I'm sad, but with you, I totally cried happy tears. I was deeply touched by how the Maya's family just oozed love and support. The Henry family is definitely one I would not hesitate to say is what a family should be.

You also made me ship Maya and Jesse so hard it hurt. Okay, fine, I was totally iffy about Jesse at first, but he turned out to be one of the sweetest guys ever. And holy crud, their chemistry was off the charts! It was also pretty lovely how Maya was the kind of girl who didn't jump to conclusions about the other girls Jesse hung out with.

You made me love both Maya and Jesse individually, too. I love how they were both extremely passionate about what they loved to do--Maya especially. She was also a very real and honest character--heck, at one point she admitted to liking the fact that she was gaining followers because of Jesse, as I know most of us would feel.

I would also like to give you bonus points for containing: a) lovable LGBTQ side characters, and b) SAM HENRY (and Jordan--and them together!).

I heart ya. Lots.


Deadly Darlings | The Social Potato | The Book Geek | Twitter | Instagram
589 reviews1,031 followers
July 25, 2015
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

Miranda Kenneally's Hundred Oaks is one of those super cute, swoon-worthy contemporaries that you can pick up at any point in the series, and love them just as much as the next person. For me, I started reading her books since Racing Savannah (book 4) and this book, Jesse's Girl is undoubtedly my favourite one up to date. While the first 5 books have all been about sports, this one is different in the sense that the two leads are musicians.

Things that I loved about Jesse's Girl:

1. A strong-willed female main character. In another world, Maya could have totally been my best friend. She's a really quirky girl who dresses like in the eighties, and really values trust and loyalty in a relationship of any sort. I loved her passion for music, it was definitely one of the first things that struck me about her. She may be lacking in self-confidence, especially after finding out that her crush actually never liked her back and that the band she created no longer wanted her as lead guitar, but I loved her strong-will and clear vision of pursuing music as a career by herself, and not by using her new relationship with Jesse, big time musician, as a handicap to get her there. Saying that I admire her is one helluva understatement.

2. Greatest family dynamic ever! If I were to ever list my top ten favourite family relationships, Maya's family would definitely be on that list. Family plays a huge role in this book and it seriously just had a lot of feels from it. I love how warm and supportive Maya's family is, and how every one can argue with each other but you can still see how much love they have for each other. THINKING OF IT JUST MAKES ME SQUEEE AND HUG MY KINDLE. Also: Maya's older brother is actually Sam, one of the main characters from Catching Jordanso fans of the first book will surely be over the moon. I found it seriously amusing and adorable how protective Sam was over Maya. BROTHER OF THE YEAR, PEOPLE.

3. One cute as heck romance with witty banter. I've always had a love to hate relationship with celebrity/normal person romances because they can be melodramatic as fuck. Thank God that's not the case here because I am so. done. with that kind of drama. That is not to say that there aren't instances where for example, Jesse thinks that Maya is using him to get to her dream as a musician - but it's never as full blown or ridiculous as some books can portray it. Their relationship is healthy, realistic and also sex-positive which is always another huuuge plus.

4. YAY LGBTQ characters! There are some LGBTQ+ supporting roles in this novel which are so cute. I totally ship, Maya's best friend, Dave with Xander. THEY ARE SO CUUUUUTE. There are also nods towards other LGBTQ+ people as well, so THANK YOU Kenneally for all ze diversity!

My only gripe is that I felt like I predicted most things that were going to happen in this novel from the very beginning, but in the end, it's not a huge deal for me because of how brilliant all the other components were.

Miranda Kenneally's contemporaries are the ultimate reads for the summer, and Jesse's Girl is no exception with it's amazing cast of people. 

~Thank you Sourcebooks Fire for the review copy!~

Profile Image for Paula M.
547 reviews641 followers
July 24, 2015

"Yeah, yeah, I'm from Tennessee, where its a crime if you don't love country, but I deep, rumbling beats and singing loud and fast and hard. I do not like closing my eyes and crooning to a cow in the pasture."

I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS IS MY FIRST BOOK FROM MIRANDA KENNEALLY!! Excuse me while I purchase her other books. I am missing out, I know that now. It definitely shocked me to find out that Miranda isn't on my author-to-stalk list when her books are the kinds I inhale like crack. Books like Jesse's Girl keeps me alive!!! And I have authors like Miranda to thank for that. You may think that Jesse's Girl is another YA contemporary romance, but I'll stop you right there. Because Jesse's Girl is absolutely more than that, it has a heart.

Jesse and Maya is absolutely delightful to read. Maya, especially, is a refreshing main character with a very much engaging voice. She has that badass and yet adorable persona nailed. She's also a surprise too since I expected a southern sweetheart (I mean, look at the cover) but turns out, Maya isn't the southern sweetheart type. Usually, I'm not into the spunky kind of girl, but Maya changed me. She made me admire her so much with her caring heart, big dreams and witty and sassy comebacks.

Jesse didn't have to do much. We all know that musicians are my top favorite heroes, but a country artist? With an attitude like Jesse? Which isn't great at first but still!! My heart breaks for the guy. He's all hard and sometimes jerky on the outside but on the inside? Totally a marshmallow coated with lots and lots of sugar. Jesse knows how to deliver a speech that will melt every part of you and that, my friends, is why Jesse deserved to be loved.

What I like most about Jesse's Girl is Miranda's extraordinary power to make me forget my bladder and hunger. Apparently, once you sit down with a Miranda Kenneally book, you'll either finish it NOW or... there's no other choice, really. You'll finish it on one sitting because you'll be compelled to do so. See how powerful Miranda is? I really don't mind, tbh.

Do I really have to say it? I AM SO IN LOVE with this book and I think- scratch that, I know you will be too! Its optimistic, smart and full of heart. Filled with rich characters that will touch your inner core and relationships that are neatly and realistically done, Jesse's Girl is everything your fangirl heart wants and needs.
Profile Image for Danielle (Love at First Page).
726 reviews622 followers
June 22, 2015
I think Jesse's Girl may be my favorite Miranda Kennally book to date? I use a question mark there because Breathe, Annie, Breathe is still her most poignant and touching, but Jesse's Girl was such a JOY to read. It's fluffy and sweet and adorable and HAPPY. And lately those are the feelings I've been desperate for while reading.

So I hope you all know by now my love of country boys. I think it's the gentlemanly manners and the accent. Can't forget about the accent. Add a country music singer into the mix, and I'm a goner. When I heard Miranda's next male lead was going to be just that, I about peed in my pants. Jesse (from the title) has grown up a super star; he's attractive, talented, and beloved. But he's also tired of the industry games and incredibly lonely. His religious family doesn't support his music, and he has no friends because he's been burned in the past by them. This is what Maya discovers when she 'shadows' him for her school's career day. She wants to play in a band and perform on stage more than anything, but lack of money and stage fright has held her back. From Jesse she wants to learn something, but what she dubs the Best Day Ever (original title of the book, by the way) turns into something so much more.

Maya is such a sweetheart! I really liked her character. She has a tender but open heart, even after it gets stomped on by her bandmates and someone she trusted. Her enthusiasm is infectious - though sometimes she read a little too young for me - and her dedication to music admirable. She never gives up, and more importantly she's determined to succeed on her own but willing to turn to her family when she needs their comfort. I think many of you all will be happy to know that Maya is Sam's younger sister, Sam of Catching Jordan fame, and he and Jordan play a large role in this book. They're whole family is quite hilarious!

When Maya first meets Jesse, he doesn't exactly endear himself to her. He's actually kind of a jerk, though we understand why later. There's a little bit of hate-to-love going on here, which works so well considering Jesse is a good ole boy and Maya eighties punk rocker chic. They played off each other so well! Their romance is a whirlwind day of spontaneous decisions, and Maya slowly begins to open Jesse's heart. I absolutely adored the romance, you guys. No drama, no unnecessary separations; just a boy and girl falling in love. And it's hard not to with Jesse, who is both sweet and sexy. I don't know that he tops the Brown brothers, but he's close.

One last thing: myself, Miranda, and a few other bloggers had a great early morning discussion on Twitter about sex in YA, and Miranda handles this SO especially well in Jesse's Girl. We already knew this from her previous books, but one scene in particular was portrayed beautifully.

I don't think fans of Miranda Kenneally's Hundred Oaks series will be disappointed with Jesse's Girl. There's spark and joy and you just can't not be smiling while you read it. It was just what this romantic heart needed for late night reading.

***Special note: I received an ARC at ALA, but this did not influence my review in any way.

This review can also be found at Love at First Page.
Profile Image for Sarah Elizabeth.
4,728 reviews1,279 followers
May 9, 2016
This was a YA contemporary romance about a girl and a rock star.

Maya was an okay character, and it was nice how she was genuine with Jesse and didn’t treat him like a star.

The storyline in this was about Maya and Jesse spending a day together and developing feelings for each other, even though it seemed that they wouldn’t be able to be together because of Jesse’s career and insecurities. The pace in this was a bit slow though, and at times I found it hard to really care about what was going on.

The ending to this was okay, and things did pick up a bit. I didn’t enjoy this as much as the previous book in the series though.

6 out of 10
Profile Image for Laura.
560 reviews331 followers
July 21, 2015
"I leaned that I have to take chances if I want a chance at my dreams."

Jesse's Girl was my third Miranda Kenneally book and I feel like now I can officially call myself a fan. While Breathe, Annie, Breathe , the first one I've read by her, is still my ultimate favorite (and I have a feeling it will stay that way), I enjoyed the other two, including Jesse's Girl, immensely and the same thing will probably apply to the other three I have yet to read. I've said it before in my review of Stealing Parker, but I will say it again: Miranda's writing is exactly my cup of tea. It's easy to read, humorous and makes the characters come to life in the most wonderful way. In addiction to that her books have strong female leads and heroes that make you wish they were real, so you could date them.

"For real though," I whisper. "Why are you here?"
A cricket chirps a few times, filling the silence. Then he replies, "I missed you."

Jesse's Girl is extremely cute and a perfect light summer read. I especially loved the music aspect and the characters were as always in Kenneally's books fun and likable.
The heroine Maya Henry is quite different from both Annie and Parker, and honestly, also quite different from me. She's a true performer. A badass guitarist. An eighties rocker. A mean sexy punk girl, as Jesse likes to call her. She drives an motorcycle and is in a heavy metal band. She has bleached hair, a nose stud and likes to wear black boots, corset dresses and leather jackets. Seriously, I kind of loved her for all that alone. And even though her and I are so different, I had no problem relating to her. What I really like about Maya is that she's confident, but still has her doubts and insecurities. She did wonder if she was good enough to make it and also why that asshole Nate guy didn't want her anymore, but she never started unnecessary drama because of her insecurities and I appreciated that so much! I mean jeez, even dating a freaking famous country singer doesn't really faze her and where other girls would've acted extremely insecure and jealous, she never did. She also didn't take any of Jesse's shit and told him exactly where she stands and what she expected of him. And that is just one of the many things that makes Maya a hell of a cool girl. She also isn't afraid to speak her mind, to put herself out there, even when people criticize her. She can take criticism and she's always true to herself. All that makes her a great heroine and made sure that I never once got annoyed of being in her head.

"No more calls." He snatches my cell from my fingers and pockets it. "This is our day, and I'm not sharing you."

Then of course we have Jesse Scott. Teen sensation. Country star. Aaaand a total jerk when Maya meets him for the first time.
What I love most about Jesse is his playfulness when he *finally* realizes that Maya is actually quite cool. With her he's quick to smile and joke around which was a lot of fun to read. On the other hand he's a touch critic and a great coach. He's very serious and driven when it comes to his music and pretty closed off when it comes to most people due to bad experiences. All that made him a very interesting character to get to know and I loved figuring him out and finding the puzzle pieces of his personality that made him who he is.
I think it's tough to write about a famous hero, but Miranda Kenneally nailed it with Jesse. All his struggles and issues made complete sense and were carried out perfectly. I've always found it fascinating to read about the daily problems of celebrities that 'normal' people don't even consider. There are so many disadvantages to stardom and I loved how Miranda executed Jesse's struggle with it. Not even being able to leave the house for some shopping without being stalked/photographed/harassed would drive me nuts!

At Second Avenue, I pull over and park. Jesse takes off his helmet and sits on the Harley, panting for several seconds. "Good God, woman. Never again!"
"You're just jealous I'm a better driver."

The thing that made this book stand out from the other Hundred Oaks novels was the music aspect. Normally Kenneally writes stories related to sports and while I love that, it was nice to see her changing it up a bit. Listening to the music Maya and Jesse were talking about or singing in that moment made for a great ambience and made the story come alive even more. I haven't listened to Queen in a while, so it was awesome to get back into that because of Maya! That she likes to listen to 80s music was actually one thing we did have in common and I really enjoyed that!

Kenneally is also talented at including the secondary characters enough that they enhance the story perfectly, but never take over. Dave and Xander were tons of fun and I loved how supporting they were. Just like Maya's whole family! Her brother and his girlfriend provided many laugh out loud moments with their fights and general craziness. I can't wait to read their story in Catching Jordan!

Seconds later, Jesse Scott opens the door wearing nothing but a pair of sky blue boxers.
"Jesse," Dr. Salter scolds him. "Put some pants on for God's sake."

The reason why I don't give this 5 stars despite of all these positive things is simple: in the second part of the book I got a little.. not quite bored.. but I wasn't as interested in the story anymore, in what was going to happen. If I only had to rate the first 150 pages, I wouldn't hesitate once and definitely give it 5 stars. How Maya and Jesse met, slowly started to respect each other and finally became friends was extremely fun to read about. But once that happened, things moved quite fast and I can't believe I'm saying this, but there was almost not enough drama. God, that's such a weird thing to type. Normally I'm complaining about the drama. And I said above that I liked that Maya didn't start any drama! I'm such a hypocrite. I think it's a great thing that both Mara and Jesse were mature enough to handle all their problems easily. But for me a little something was missing in the second half of the book to keep me fully hooked and interested. I still enjoyed reading it a lot, but not as much when you compare it to the first half. Besides that though, I have no complaint. Keep writing your amazing contemporaries, Miranda!

"If you're serious about being a musician, you can't let other people decide what music you should play... You could end up going down a path that you were never meant to take and then you could end up living a life that's not yours."

So if you think you'd enjoy a YA story about music, trust and taking chances, about a sweet and fun, but mature YA love story, then don't hesitate to pick this one up!

Find me on the blog:

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Profile Image for Talltree.
2,081 reviews25 followers
February 15, 2017
So many sports romances don't have any sports in them, just like rockstar romances don't have any music stuff in them. Lots of times(IMO) neither the authors nor readers really know or care about the music or sport-it seems to be all about the stud-value of the jock, big-time musician etc.

Refreshingly this book had music stuff, as well as human stuff and boy-girl stuff. It wasn't clean, had some sexy times and both the h/H grew over the book. The romance was slow-burn - the country-boy/Grammy-winning H was a bit of a character and the h was a corset-wearing, bike-riding guitar-playing future rockstar! It was nice that they both supported the other's dreams while fighting for their own and that they had their priorities right. Low angst, interesting and relevant-to-the times teen romance.

3.5 stars!
Profile Image for Marla Mei.
537 reviews292 followers
July 22, 2015
Now kinda regretting rating Breathe, Annie, Breathe only three stars. I NEED TO REREAD THAT BOOK and remedy that.

This is not a bad book per se, but I just felt it to be the weakest out of all the books in the series. Reading this made me realize how truly heartfelt and moving Breathe, Annie, Breathe was and how it deserves more stars than what I gave it before. Though this book tackles self-discovery much like every other book in the series, I just felt the least connection with this. And I NEED to CONNECT with the characters, the situation, the emotions they're feeling for me to be deeply immersed in a book and I didn't get that here.

Longer review to come maybe.
Profile Image for Giselle.
1,057 reviews907 followers
March 31, 2016
Maya shadows teen heartthrob Jesse Scott for a day and what she expects to be a boring day ends up being one of the best days of her life. He's a reminder of everything that she has lost. Maya realizes that if she wants something bad enough, she's going to have to get it herself.

Maya ends up being one of those characters that are lost, but will end up finding herself by the end. Through her eyes we see her grow into her own and become stronger than ever. I liked her for Jesse. They made such a good match. Especially when you realize how annoying and rude he is at the beginning. I actually really enjoy character stories where the love interests dislike each other at first. It makes it so much more fun and this book had it. I liked they're little day of adventure and their love didn't feel so instant even though they only knew each other for such a short period of time.

There's something about Miranda Kenneally's books that warm my heart. She knows exactly how to tug at your heart strings and make each and every character you see fall in love with someone in the cutest way possible. Jesse's Girl is no exception. She combines music and love into one cute adorable romance. 

Get ready to fall for pretty much all of Miranda's characters.. And I'm not saying they're all perfect beings either. They're human and make mistakes, but it's what they do about it that makes her stories so memorable.



Oh my God, I love ketchup too! We have so much in common.

What am I doing wrong? Why don't I belong anywhere?

Everyone always wants something.

Family should support you no matter what, but I guess sometimes that doesn't happen.

Why is it that as soon as I place my faith in others that trust disappears in a second?

If I want to become something, I need to work a lot harder.

If you love something enough, want it bad enough, you should be willing to go after it on your own.

Family can't always help fix a difficult situation, and everybody makes mistakes. We shouldn't expect perfect. But we can hope that the people we love, love us enough to try to make it right.
Profile Image for AH.
2,005 reviews370 followers
July 8, 2015
4.0-4.5 stars - I loved this.

Jesse's Girl is a great reason to put author Miranda Kenneally on your auto-buy list. Each book gets better and better and when i read an entire book in one sitting, I know that you have something good - a really good - feel good kind of book.

The Review:
If you have not yet had a chance to read Miranda Kenneally’s Hundred Oaks series what are you waiting for? Ms. Kenneally is a gifted storyteller and her books feature realistic characters who work hard to achieve their goals.

In Jesse’s Girl we meet Maya Henry (yes, she’s Sam’s little sister!). Maya is a teenage singer and bassist in the band The Fringe. When her school has a career day and arranges for students to shadow people in a chosen field, Maya is surprised to find out that she was assigned to Jesse Scott, an 18 year old country music star. Even though Maya is from Tennessee, she doesn’t like country music. She prefers Queen. Jesse is not that happy to have a fan shadow him, but after a bit of a rocky start, the two get along.

I think that what made this book stand out for me was how realistic the characters seemed. Take Maya, for example. Maya is young and has hopes and aspirations like any teen. Her dream is to be on the show Wannabe Rocker and she tries to arrange for her band to appear on the show. When she is “fired” from the band she started, Maya was devastated. It didn’t help that she was hooking up with a band member but was disappointed when he told her that he didn’t want to date a band member. While I felt bad that Maya got dumped, she took that experience and learned from it.

I liked Jesse. As a young country star, Jesse had fame and fortune. He was willing to forgo all of that for his parents, who did not approve of his career. Personally as a parent, I can’t see myself ever forcing my children to abandon their dreams like Jesse’s parents.

I loved watching Maya and Jesse’s relationship grow. They were so cute together. My favorite part of the story was the day Maya and Jesse spent together, a kind of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off kind of day, full of crazy times. Their time apart was a little heart-wrenching.

For the fans of the Hundred Oaks series, Jordan and Sam appear in this book. Nice to see them and their “happily ever after.”

Jesse’s Girl was a quick and enjoyable read. I’m so excited to hear that more books are planned for this series. In the meantime, I’ll be looking to catch up on the books I have not yet had the chance to read.

*Note: Each book can be read as a standalone, so if you do get your hands on a book out of order, go ahead and read it. These books are suitable for the young adult reader age 12+

Thank you to NetGalley and Sourcebooks Fire for a review copy of this book.

Review posted on Badass Book Reviews. Check it out!
Profile Image for Sophie.
1,179 reviews438 followers
December 31, 2015
I seriously think this book may be my favourite of the Hundred Oaks series. Being English, and not all that interested in sport, I've found I can't really relate to the sportier aspects of the previous books. However, I didn't have the same difficulties here.

In Jesse's Girl, we follow Maya Henry, the younger sister of much loved Sam Henry (our fave from Finding Jordan), as she shadows the country music star, Jesse Scott, for career mentoring day. When I was at school we didn't have anything like this; the closest I could compare it too would be works experience week at the end of year 10 (aged 15), but even then, all I did was help out at the local primary school. Nothing anywhere near as exciting as shadowing a famous musician.

Something we all know Miranda succeeds at is writing swoon worthy boys, and Jesse Scott is no exception. Though Sam Henry will always hold a special place in my heart, Jesse may actually be my favourite of the Hundred Oaks boys. The relationship between himself and Maya was so wonderful, I honestly couldn't stop smiling. While it may have been far-fetched at times, it seemed real, and not rushed at all. I seriously hope we will be able to revisit Jesse and Maya in the future.

One of the best things about this book, hands down, was seeing Sam and Jordan again. They will always be my favourite Hundred Oaks couple, and seeing them in a proper, defined relationship, exactly as amazing as they were in Finding Jordan, was delightful. Considering there is another Henry kid, Anna, I hope she will be the protagonist of a future Hundred Oaks book.

All in all, Miranda's writing gets even better with each book, and I am so happy there will be two more. I loved how she branched outside of sport, and into music, and can't wait to see what she writes about in the future. Jesse's Girl was a wonderful, swoon worthy book, and everyone should just get this book, ASAP!
Profile Image for Ellice .
168 reviews26 followers
November 2, 2015

May just be the best book of the Hundred Oaks series yet! I'm in love with Jesse, and I fell in love with Sam Henry all over again <333
Profile Image for Lisa (lifeinlit).
695 reviews461 followers
July 7, 2015
4.5 stars!

My first Miranda Kenneally book was Breathe, Annie, Breathe, which I ended up really enjoying when I read it last year. So you could say I was pretty excited to read this book. After reading this one, I’m determined to go back and read the ENTIRE Hundred Oaks series now! This book was FANTASTIC! I loved it so much. And I can’t wait to meet more of this great crew of characters.

Maya loves music. She spends her time playing in a rock band with some friends from school. So when Hundred Oaks High sets her up to shadow the country music star “Jesse Scott” for the day as part of a career mentor program, she’s excited, yet hesitant. Country music isn’t exactly her thing. And neither is Jesse’s stuck-up, better-than-you-are attitude that he’s known for. Yes, he’s easy on the eyes… VERY easy… but his attitude is hard for Maya to ignore. Right from their first meeting she’s put off by his demeanor and entitlement, acting super snarky right back to him. These two get off to a rough start. But as their shadowing day continues, they begin to see a different side of each other, and the feelings begin. But can the local snarky punk rock girl really end up with the spoiled country rock start guy?

This was such a fun story! I loved the whole opposites attract story line. I loved how their entire day was inspired by Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, both of them trying new things and enjoying their day to the fullest at all costs. These two opposites (Jesse, “a little bit country”, the Maya, “a little bit rock and roll”) find themselves having more fun on this shadow day than they’ve had in quite some time.

I don’t have a single complaint about this book. I fell in love with Jesse right from the beginning. He was struggling with family issues, as well as trying to learn how to live in the spotlight, all while just trying to live his life and enjoy it as much as he can. Maya, who wanted to branch out a bit and play different kids of music in her band, was constantly outnumbered and made to feel that she was never good enough. Maya, searching for some self-confidence, and Jesse, searching for himself, make one of the cutest couples I’ve ever read about. They’re definitely up there with Lola & Cricket for me now!

I would DEFINITELY recommend this book! It had it all. I can’t imagine fans of Miranda Kenneally not being totally blown away by this adorable story, and even more adorable couple. This is the perfect beach read, the type of book you will pick up while you’re relaxing outdoors and refuse to put down until you’ve devoured the entire thing in one sitting.

(Thanks to Sourcebooks Fire & Xpresso Book Tours for the review copy!)

Find this review and others like it at Lost in Literature!


Profile Image for Mlpmom (Book Reviewer).
3,001 reviews369 followers
June 15, 2015
Ever since first reading Catching Jordan so many years ago, I have loved this series, Miranda's writing ability and the world and characters that she has created. I vowed there and then that I would read anything that she has to offer us readers because she really is just that good.

Her latest is no different. Once again we are thrown back into the life of Hundred Oaks, with familiar faces as well as some new ones but this time, this time we get a sexy, cowboy rock star to keep us interested and to shake some things up. And if that wasn't enough we also get Sam's younger spunky rock n' roll sister, Maya and when you bring these two together, things really do get interesting.

I first have to say that I love, loved, all the scenes where Sam and Jordan made an appearance! I adore this couple and to see where they are now, two years later from their last appearance, many years later from Catching Jordan, was just so very much fun and I could kiss Miranda for giving us these scenes.

Now back to Jesse and Maya. Oh boy these two were pretty electric together. Couldn't be more opposite nor more the same if they tried. I loved their dynamic together and the friendship that they formed before anything else. The non insta-love of it all was so nice to get. Add in the music aspect,their maturity (they actually talked through problems!), friendship (Dale was a fun character!), and understanding of one another truly made this different from a lot of YA books out there right now and even from others in her series and I truly enjoyed that about it.

This was another cute, fun, and enjoyable read from Miranda and a great addition to the series. So happy I read it and got to experience it.
Profile Image for Stacee.
2,711 reviews704 followers
June 2, 2015
4.5 stars

I loved the premise of this book and Miranda is always someone I love to read, so it was a no-brainer.

I really liked Maya. Her talent and stubbornness was fun to read about. It took me a second to realize she was Sam Henry's little sister. I loved seeing Sam and Jordan and the entire Henry family. It's always so refreshing to see supportive and present families in YA.

Jesse is sort of a complicated mess. I really enjoyed reading his struggle to balance what he thought was right with what he wanted. There were a lot of sweet and swoony moments and I think I could read these two forever.

I'm pretty sure this is my new favorite book of Miranda's.

**Huge thanks to Sourcebooks and NetGalley for providing the arc in exchange for an honest review**
Profile Image for Jennifer.
662 reviews2,253 followers
November 15, 2015
I love love love all the books in this series! Always laughs, tears, and butterflies!
Profile Image for Andi (Andi's ABCs).
1,546 reviews189 followers
February 17, 2016
This review was originally posted on Andi's ABCs
I dont deny the fact that I am a lucky girl. I got to read Jesse’s Girl for the first time when it was in draft form and wasn’t even called Jesse’s Girl. I fell in love with it then but I wanted to wait to review it until I had done a reread. Honestly though, it didn’t matter. The book was awesome in draft and awesome in a final copy. Miranda Kenneally once again does what she does best and gives you awesome boys, wicked cool girls and a story that will keep you invested ill the end. Not to mention the laughs.

Jesse’s Girl is about Maya Henry (if you read Catching Jordan there is a reason the name seems familiar) a punk rock girl in a country world. Maya has dreams of being a famous punk rocker some day but those are few and far between in her hometown in Tennessee. When Maya is given the chance to shadow Jesse Scott, country music God, for one day she feels like this is het chance to see how the business works. Too bad Jesse doesn’t trust anyone, as they are all looking for something, and makes that very clear to Maya off the bat. Even with their differences they two spend a day together that changes them both in a way they never expected.


If you have read a Kenneally book before you know they usually involve some kind of sport. Football, running, softball…they have all played a role in the past Hundred Oaks books. Jesse’s Girl is different in that case.  Instead of using a sport Miranda went with music and it worked for this story. I think the magic of two different music styles in a music city was the perfect way to take a tale about a normal girl and a famous guy. When I first read the synopsis I was sad there would be no use of sports, but it was the right decision for this story and I think ended up adding to it.


Nashville! What isn’t there to love about Nashville?? I have gone once and it has been one of my favorite cities that I have ever visited in the US. Having that is the background for Jesse’s Girl was pretty amazing as I was able to picture a lot of the places from my short visit there. I was also able to picture how easy it was for Maya to feel out of place as a punk rock girl because Nashville is anything but. It was pretty much the perfect setting for a story like this. Truthfully…it made me want to hop on a plane and go to the Ryman Auditorium, the Grand Ole Opry and pop in a Tootsie’s. Who’s in for a road trip??


Hands down what I liked best in Jesse’s Girl was the characters. Maya Henry…talk about spunk. She knows who she is and isn’t afraid to stand out. She stands up for herself and does what she thinks is the right thing. She’s funny and uncertain but also sure of who she wants to be and I loved that. And Jesse. Oh adorable Jesse Scott. He had some of the perfect one-liners in the book that just made me laugh, still make me laugh when I think about them. He is definitely closed off (and with good reason) but there is something very open about him too. Just add him to the list of the amazing Kenneally Boys (have we trademarked that term yet?? We should!). Plus you know there will be the inevitable cameo from characters in other books, I mean Maya’s last name is Henry for crying out loud.

Final Thoughts:

All in all I loved Jesse’s Girl both times I read it. It made me laugh and cringe and then smile as Maya and Jesse navigated through whatever was going on between the two of them. I loved the way the story was told and how it all went down in the end. I loved the cameo of some old favorites while starting off a generation of new Hundred Oaks kids to love. It did exactly what I think a good book should do and it made you feel just like you were part of the day and had become friends with Jesse and Maya yourself.
Profile Image for Jasprit.
527 reviews749 followers
July 6, 2015
I adore how Kenneally is always able to make me change my opinion about a character she creates. I of course went in to Jesse’s Girl expecting to be wooed off my feet by Jesse in this book, but instead I found myself really miffed by his behaviour. I couldn’t understand that being in the spot light 24/7 and as famous as Jesse at such a young age makes you a vulnerable person that you have to keep your guard up. But when a person like Maya comes along and is given the chance to shadow you at least try and be polite. I was glad that Maya wasn’t one of those push over girls, but took Jesse’s mood swings in her stride. Even though Maya wasn’t a fan of Jesse, if a famous person had spoken to me in that way on our first meeting, I probably would have fled in tears. Jesse’s first appearance aside, I liked the concept that Kenneally gives us in Jesse’s Girl, Jesse and Maya are two very opposite sort of people and so having to work with one another for the day made them both see things a whole lot differently, (especially me! Where did this new Jesse come from?).

On the day Maya was set up to shadow Jesse was the highlight of this book for me. There was so much that Jesse and Maya were able to try out that neither of them had done before, that it made me wish that I could have one of these days full with laughter and fun for myself. And because this day was so ram packed with so much going on, and because of the relationship that was formed because of it made me feel as if this adventurous day took place over a few days instead. It was good seeing Jesse open up a bit more and let down his hair and although he didn’t feel he could fully trust Maya completely (which I understood after what he had been through) I liked that he went out all there to make the most of this day and give Maya a day she wouldn’t forget.

I really enjoyed seeing Maya and Jesse’s relationship unfold, with a lot of barriers along the way you never really knew which way things would go. But I appreciated this cute story that Kenneally gave us. What I think I was happier about was the appearance of one of my all time favourite characters. I always love going back to characters and finding out what’s going on with their lives again. This character had not changed one bit, but I loved him for his over protectiveness, his nature to want to achieve things by himself and not rely on others and for being the loveable character he always is.

Jesse’s Girl was a really unexpected sort of read for me, but one I still thoroughly enjoyed nevertheless. Kenneally was once again able to easily lure you into her stories with her gorgeous writing that you never want to leave her stories or characters! I can’t wait to meet more wonderful characters along the way!.
Profile Image for seton.
713 reviews290 followers
August 21, 2016
Genre: YA romance
Sensuality: PG
Rating: 3.5

17 yr old Madonna wannabe follows a famous 19 yr old country star around for a school project.

I read this bc one of my favorite all-time YAs is Catching Jordan. This features Sam's sister and it's great to see the glimpses of Sam&Jordan 6 years later back in their hometown and "living in sin". As for this bk, it's a cute story with homages to Ferris Bueller's Day Off and American Idol.
Profile Image for Bookish Indulgenges with b00k r3vi3ws.
1,608 reviews239 followers
June 12, 2015
I have been hearing about Miranda Kenneally and her Hundred Oaks series for quite some time. But somehow I never really got a chance to pick up one. So, I was happy when I got approved to read this book on Netgalley. And now that I have finally read it, I am happy to say that all the good things I had heard about this book were absolutely TRUE!

When Maya had filled up the form for career mentoring day saying that she would like to be a musician, she expected to be sent to the local music store for a day. Instead, much to her surprise, she gets to shadow Nashville’s teen idol, Jesse Scott. Their first meeting was what I would call a disaster when Jesse came off as a stuck-up jerk. But there is more to Jesse than his star status and Maya discovers that soon enough.

I loved Maya. She is a girl you would for a friend… hell, would even want to be her. She is smart, talented and strong. Her punk-grungy appearance is just a cover for the sweet and caring girl that she really. Jesse has his share of baggage and while that sometimes make him lash out, he is mostly a good guy. He can be opinionated and stubborn. Maya and Jesse’s relationship is that of equals even though Jesse is a star and Maya is not. She can stand her ground well and give back Jesse as much as he doles her out. But the best part of the book is Maya’s Family and their dynamics. They are such a wonderful and supporting bunch that you cannot help but love them. Then there are Dave and Nash – one you’ll love to love and you’ll love to hate the other. The storyline is simple and the magic happens in its narration. The author’s writing style is very engaging with its simple language and smooth flow. The characters are all very well developed and no one is expendable in the story.

This is a very beautiful and light hearted story that sweeps you off your feet from the first chapter.
Profile Image for Muse-ic ♬.
387 reviews111 followers
December 27, 2016
Solid 4 stars. This one is, hands down, my favorite of the 6 Miranda Kenneally books I've read.
Give me a book about the struggles of a musician and odds are I'll take it.
I really connect with those.
I absolutely loved Maya. I loved Jesse the sweetheart so much! And Casper and Sam and Mr. Logan and errbody!
Beautiful story line, wonderful characters, very fluffy!
I'm 100% unashamed to admit that there was a lot of smiling and giggling on my part!

Profile Image for Emily.
3 reviews1 follower
December 5, 2013
There's FIVE more books after Catching Jordan!?!?


Totally buying all of those the day they're released!!!

WOW I'm excited already!!
Profile Image for Michelle.
1,312 reviews51 followers
July 7, 2015
This review can also be found on A Thousand Lives Lived, check it out for more!

Miranda Kenneally has done it again... and it's thousands of times better than I expected. I WANT TO BE JESSE'S GIRL, OKAY? As I've anticipated this one for ages after reading Breathe, Annie, Breathe and even before that. I find that we're unable to find that perfect music-associated book, and THIS WAS IT. I suggest heading over to the bookstore as soon as possible and falling in love right there, at the moment. HYPE, HYPE, HYPE, let's bring more of that out.

Jesse's Girl shocked me, whirled me around and left me longing for more gorgeousness. If you think that it's not the right type of read for you, I'd go over the summary again and suddenly realize that you've been a lost soul all along. The best thing is that you don't even have to read the other books in the series, Hundred Oaks, before going to this one. Each has a new storyline, a new beautiful and memorable couple that Kenneally focuses on, and Jesse and Maya have to be my favourite all along.

"A guy who clearly loves singing, who loves performing, and puts so much emotion and love into his songs—why would he quit? Give up something that is his whole world? The reason has to be big as life, right?" (eARC, Loc 587)

Jesse is a freaking big deal. He's life to me. But also... he's a country star that everyone knows and adores, especially the teenage girls. Think of Justin Bieber, 100x more hotter. Maya's your ordinary girl, who plays in a heavy metal band (although she hates metal music) and loves to play the guitar and wants to be a musician. When she gets the chance to job shadow Jesse Scott for school, she kind of is upset over the fact that he seems rude and careless. But as they get to spend more time together and do the things they love, they grow a connection and maybe, just maybe, fall in love.

Some may argue that this has a cliché premise—boy is superstar, boy meets typical girl, but what can you honestly expect from this? I suggest expecting amazing things, because it'll even blow those stuff away. Every single time Kenneally shocks me and I feel like an idiot for expecting less. It's always this, and I still shame myself for never wanting to pick Catching Jordan up in the first place. Boy, wouldn't I have missed so much in this wonderful bookish world? I think I would. I'm so glad to have gotten a chance to read this earlier, thanks to the publisher. Can't a girl fall in love with a country star?

I can just picture the accents, cowboy boots and hat and drawling that blurted out of Jesse's grins. That's just how romantic and descriptive Miranda's writing is. From start to finish, I couldn't put the book down and it was just a sitting of a few hours for me, nothing less or more. Her plots are not even like a book, it's an actual story. I feel so musical and with the need to grab my acoustic guitar and start jamming with old eighties tunes after Jesse and Maya's inspiration given. SWEET HOME HUNDRED OAKKSSSSSSS!

Miranda obviously can break the basics of a teenager's life straight into the hands of one main character. Maya is an extraordinary protagonist whom I could relate to SO SO much. She's sassy, but obviously has a soft side and is able to comprehend the most important things in her life. She took risks to follow her dreams and listens to everyone's advice around her. And the supportive, adorable family by her side? What else could a girl want? Jesse. That fucking beautiful sexy guy who makes me pee my pants of hunger.

So at the rarest times us girls are lucky to fall in love. This couple showed that these things are not rare, but all geared to fate and luck. Because really, it's luck that Jesse was the principal's nephew and got to meet Maya in the first place. They have the perfect chemistry and the issues that life gave them never affected their relationship. I found myself cringing, knowing that something'd come up when they'd hide something from each other, but they always seemed to handle everything positively. That's a healthy relationship, I tell you. And there were so many steamy scenes that made me want to die of excitement. Now that sounds awkward, please don't think it is.

"I know you'd make me feel better, Maya Henry.' [...] "Family's not always blood." (Loc 1973)

WHO CARES IF THIS ISN'T SPORTS-CENTRED? I mean, that was always another piece of enjoyment for me, but I'd never skip a Miranda read, just saying. The Jordan and Sam scenes made me feel like a twelve year old all over again, reading this series for the first time and never letting go after that. This had everything I wanted and more: a positive view on sex (finally), the summer-kind feel that makes me want to run toward the sunset for my future man and music. As well as interesting characters and pasts. We also get a glimpse at Annie Lennox being a guest judge in a TV show for wannabe rockers! Who doesn't want that?

This is your comfort read. And it's not something typical, either. Miranda has given us yet another contemporary-romance that left me giggling and in tears of fear often, and I just want everyone on this planet to give it a try. That's how much awe I am in, and that's something that doesn't appear often. Let's hope that I'll get to meet Jesse Scott on my impossible futuristic career shadowing day, because I'll lie and say I want to be a country musician. Watch out, Luke Bryan, a new teenage hottie perfect for me is in town, and he has stunned my feels with heart-fluttering moments. I WANT COWBOY BOOTS NOW!

*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much!*
Profile Image for Christy LoveOfBooks.
842 reviews567 followers
July 7, 2015

I’ve had a bit of a rough time with YA romance lately, but Miranda Kenneally’s Hundred Oak series is one that I still get excited for, because I know I’ll get a quick read full of feels and laughter. Jesse’s Girl is no exception! It was seriously such a delightful read full of wonderful characters.

I was not expecting Maya’s personality and style! The cover makes it look like she’s a country girl, but no. Maya is red lips, nose piercing, and leather pants … yeah, the girl I a rocker! That was a pleasant surprise for sure. She loves music. I mean, loves it. She’ll get it anyway she can, even if it means being in the school choir and wearing awful drapes as dresses. It’s her passion, and aspires to make it big.

Enter Jesse, a big time country singer at the age of eighteen. As a favor to his uncle, he agrees to let Maya shadow him for her career day. Neither one is exactly thrilled with the situation at first, but as they begin to bond over music and open up to each other, the real fun begins.

Jesse is definitely a fun character. His cockiness and teasing is quite amusing, but it’s even better when Maya dishes it right back. They both have huge hearts, though, and it’s impossible not to love them. There were a couple little bumps in the road for them, but I’m really happy that things didn’t get too dramatic and they actually communicated.

Catching Jordan is still my favorite installment, and Sam and Jordan one of my favorite couples. So when I discovered that Maya is Sam’s little sister, my excitement spiked considerably. I felt all kinds of giddy seeing them again, especially seeing Sam in protective older brother mode. Poor guy (haha)! I love how the last three installments have all involved younger siblings somehow from the first three books - it’s like Hundred Oaks the Next Generation.

So yes, Jesse’s Girl left me with a big smile! Honestly, we’re up to six books now in the series, and I haven’t been disappointed with one yet. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Hundred Oaks next!
Profile Image for Jen Ryland.
1,483 reviews905 followers
June 21, 2015
Upon seeing book listed on Goodreads:
Can't wait.
And Miranda K, you have given me an 80s earworm....

My take after reading this: Yes, this book was chock-filled with tropes (Romancing a Star; Princess for a Day; I'm a Little Bit Country, You're a Little Bit Rock and Roll; Odd Couple Romance) but it definitely put a smile on my face. From the Ferris Bueller's Day Off inspired day this couple first spends together to the American Idol-inspired show that Maya tries out for, this book was tons of fun. It was great to see Jordan and Sam again too.
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