Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys

Rate this book
When she was nine, Megan Meade met a group of terrible, mean, Popsicle-goo-covered boys, the sons of her father's friend -- the McGowan boys. Now, seven years later, Megan's army doctor parents are shipping off to Korea and Megan is being sent to live with the little monsters, who are older now and quite different than she remembered them.

Living in a house with seven boys will give Megan, who has never even been kissed, the perfect opportunity to learn everything there is to know about boys. And she'll send all her notes to her best friend, Tracy, in...

Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys

Observation #1: Being an army brat sucks. Except that this is definitely a better alternative to moving to Korea.

Observation #2: Forget evil, laughing, little monsters. These guys have been touched by the Abercrombie gods. They are a blur of toned, suntanned perfection.

Observation #3: I need a lock on my door. STAT.

Observation #4: Three words: six-pack abs.

Observation #5: Do not even get me started on the state of the bathroom. I'm thinking of calling in a hazmat team. Seriously.

Observation #6: These boys know how to make enemies. Big time.

Megan Meade will have to juggle a new school, a new family, a new crush -- on the boy next door, as in next bedroom door -- and a new life. Will she survive the McGowan boys?

268 pages, Paperback

First published October 1, 2005

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Kate Brian

61 books2,267 followers
Kate Brian is the author of the SHADOWLANDS TRILOGY (SHADOWLANDS, HEREAFTER & ENDLESS), as well as the New York Times bestselling PRIVATE and PRIVILEGE series, and the wildly popular MEGAN MEADE'S GUIDE TO THE MCGOWAN BOYS. She also writes teen fiction under the name Kieran Scott.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
11,473 (35%)
4 stars
10,550 (32%)
3 stars
7,820 (23%)
2 stars
2,170 (6%)
1 star
632 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,440 reviews
Profile Image for Winnie.
53 reviews7 followers
April 1, 2008
"There were purple marks all over the front of her favorite white t-shirt. She picked it up and unfolded it. Drawn right on the front were two huge circles each with a dot in it's center. Breasts."
One day you're living alone with parents, next thing you know, out pop the seven dwarfs. Megan is staying with seven brothers for two years, until her parents come back from South Korea. The last time she's seen them, they were eating dirt out of the backyard. Now they've turned into Abercrombie gods, well a few of them anyways. Seven guys, one girl, whta could possibly happen?
Imagine yourself stuck with seven monsters. That's what Megan Meade has to live with. Except those seven monsters are boys that range from toddlers to almost adults. Megan's parents are army doctors. They travel from one place to another and are never stable long enough for Megan to have real friends. Their next stop is South Korea. This time, Megan's not budging, she has just found a new best friend and this was the year she was finally ready to flirt with Ben palmer. There's only two options on the menu. Either moving to South Korea with her parents, or say hello to the Mcgowan boys. Megan picks option B. She starts off at a bumpy road, but things get better when she gets in contact with the popular and athletic Evan Mcgowan at home and at school, having to deal with obnoxoius pretty girls on the way, that which was definately not on the menu.
This may not be one of the best books you've ever read, but you'll definately going to remember it. It has such an intestesting setting. If you had a choice to replay Freaky Friday with someone, Megan Meade would most likely be your top 5 choices. It's a great book, rather enjoyable and really hilarious.
This book is heavy. It's filled with family, love, hatred, tolerance, laughter, and everything else in a teenagers life. It's one of those books where you'll love the protagonist's setting and would love to give her shoes a try. So pick up the book, press play.
Profile Image for Sita.
108 reviews58 followers
October 4, 2011
A list... Because I am in a listy mood.

1) Plot in a sentence: Megan’s parents get a job overseas, she refuses to go, they let her stay with the McGowan’s, the McGowan’s are a family of 9, no girls (except the mom) all boys, Megan makes friends (and more than friends) and has an interesting experience altogether. Boy, that was a long sentence.

[image error]

2) What I thought of the plot: 8/10. I thought it was an interesting idea, and in the end, I do think the author pulled it off.


3) Writing: 4/10. Okay, readable, thank god it was only told from one point of view (unlike some of her other books). But it wasn’t that great, I could read it and understand it and it felt teenagery enough, but I guess I just didn’t like it. But that’s my opinion.

4) The characters: 7/10. I could go on forever here, but I won’t. I liked how all the boys had different personality’s, and sure, the parents were a little stereotyped. But that was okay; it would have been a little odd, if the parents weren’t. I however did not like the main character. I found her whiny, annoying and I just couldn’t connect with her. I just didn’t like her. In saying that again, I repeat all the boys were great and that’s why I gave it a 7/10. descriptionBecause if it was just Megan, I would give her a 3/10.description

5) Enjoy-ability: 7/10. Light, fluff, not great but okay. If your looking for something that fits that description. This is it!


Yep, no Michael Jackson though.

6) Overall interestingness: 8/10. It kept me reading, there were enough twists and turns to keep me interested. I read it all in one sitting.

I don’t know if I would recommend it to anyone so depending on how you took that I shall let you make a decision.
Profile Image for Ivana.
78 reviews
July 26, 2012
OMG.This book was fun to read. Megan is stupid though so that kinda put a damper on things.
The McGowan boys (all 7 of them) kinda made up for her stupidity and ignorance though.
I have a question. Why do all heroines have to be stupid and ignorant. Especially when it concerns boys. Megan only figured out that Finn liked her when he was friggin' sucking her face! I figured it out when he ditched his date to pick her up. He arrived in 8 minutes! Can you say obvious? Then he quits drawing his crush, Kayla Bird and starts drawing her. It doesn't get any more obvious than that. But no. Megan wasn't even sure if they were "good friends" until he stuck his tongue down her throat. ARRRRGGGHHH!
And the ending sucked! Megan and the 7 McGowan boys were playing ultimate Frisbee. What?! And there was a cliff-hanger... but no sequel.
"Finn smiled openly at her and Megan grinned, her heart pounding. But when she looked at Evan, it stopped completely. He was staring at her with those intense eyes. Staring right into her. Just like he had in those couple of moments when she had thought, for a split second, that he wanted to kiss her.
Well, that's . . . interesting, Megan thought."
And just a few pages ago, Finn was "the one."
Please tell me how anyone can write this oh-so-obvious cliff-hanger and not continue with AT LEAST a sequel.
Way to piss someone off, Kate Brian.
Profile Image for Gwennie.
220 reviews7 followers
September 12, 2007
This is a total girl fantasy novel. Take a girl, make her a bright, shy, athletic type, and have her live in a house with 7 boys (not relatives) who have "been blessed by the Abercrombie Gods." Since she has to live there with these family friends while her parents are posted to S. Korea (career Army), Megan decides to make the best of it, and begins sending all her findings about the strange world of boys she now inhabits. Over the course of the first couple of weeks in her new home, she learns to be more assertive and acheives major breakthroughs with various memebers of the family--the brother with Asperger's begins to talk more, the popular jock brother talks about his feelings, the artistic brother finally completes a painting, the loner spends a little more time with family.... you get the idea. Throw in some romantic possibilities and a "mean girls" style queen bee to take down a peg, and you have a very fun, totally implausible novel. This would make a fantastic movie...and I would totally go watch it.
Profile Image for Aisha (seetheworldwithbooks).
456 reviews91 followers
June 9, 2016
What kind of ending is that? Ugh..another stupid heroine who still likes the guy even after he treated her like trash and gave her the cold shoulder. Finn is the right one for you and he's been there all along, Megan. How the hell couldn't you see that? When Evan looked at you with 100 percent intensity like he wanted to kiss you, smack him in the head! He fucking ditched you before and who saved you then? FINN! instead of saying "interesting" when Evan looked at you like he wanted to eat your face, you should have run to the fucking hills and save yourself! Oh, god. Iam so done..so so done. I thought iam gonna like it and i did for like 60 percent BEFORE the ending RUINED everything. I thought she has grown up!! Turned out i was wrong! Ugh! .#\×$÷€#€×$€#×)!!!!!>.<
Profile Image for Andrea C. *andreasbookishlife*.
144 reviews121 followers
January 19, 2020
Originally 4 stars but changed to 5 stars.

I’m so happy that I finally read this! I’ve wanted to for a while and really enjoyed it! The only issue I had was I didn’t love the ending (I wish there had been more closure) but the story as a whole was great and has definitely been a book that I would like to reread in the future! I would highly reccomend!
Profile Image for kari.
849 reviews
December 15, 2017
First things first.
Something that really bothered me was that Finn’s comment on his brother, Miller, who has Asperger’s, a form of autism, was just wrong. Here it is: “And there’s nothing you can say about it because he’s sick, you know?” (page 189)
Now, Finn and his brothers have grown up with Miller and they would all KNOW that Asperger’s/Autism isn’t an illness. I would think their parents would have drilled that into the heads, that their brother is different, not sick. I was disturbed that an author would have a character say that and a character who is drawn to be somewhat more thoughtful than some of his brothers. He should have described his brother as being different, not sick. People with disabilities, particularly those with various intellectual disabilities are NOT sick, nor are they suffering from their conditions. They are different. Authors, if you are going to write about a disabled character, please get the language correct. Would you say someone with brown hair was afflicted with brown hair? Or someone suffers from having green eyes? People with disabilities have different characteristics; that’s all. They are not sick. Either portray them correctly or leave them out of the story and write about something you know.

Moving on…
Meagan is something of a goody-two-shoes and she started to irritate me with that. She is shocked when she gets grounded for the first time in her life. Really? I get that she’s a military kid and used to rules and all, but she has never done anything wrong at all. I found that hard to believe.
Also, she simply looks up Asperger’s on the computer and figures out how to help Miller.
Did. Not. Like. This.
First of all, this boy has six brothers, three of whom are older, one of whom is the most popular guy in school and they do not help him to fit in? At all? All of his brothers ignore him at school? How is that possible? Why wouldn’t their parents have stepped in and asked them to help him out? He’s just an outsider until Meagan comes along and in the space of two weeks magically fixes it. Ridiculous!
Also, Meagan’s flaw is that she supposedly has been unable to stand up for herself and say what she thinks and yet, in almost every situation, she does exactly that, says what she thinks or what she wants. So really she is flawless, making her even more irritating. The few times that she doesn’t immediately express herself, she later completely blows up, extremely expressing herself. I didn’t like how she treated Regina, who is so thrilled to have a girl around.
I was also irritated that Meagan decided to turn tail and run the moment things got really tough. Where was all her newly grained strength and wisdom?
What I did like was that the brother’s personalities were each clearly drawn and their interactions with one another felt very real.
The ending was great except for, "well that's interesting". Made me want to smack Meagan upside the head. It also showed her to be self-centerd and to NOT have paid attention to what happened between the brothers in the past few weeks if she plans to act on "well, that's interesting." This line felt tossed in to simply open the door for, you guessed it, a possible sequel.
I think this book would be enjoyed by younger teens, under sixteen perhaps, but I think older teens might do some eye rolling. Having said all that, it was an enjoyable read and I'd read more from this author. I wish I'd liked Meagan's character a little better.
122 reviews98 followers
June 8, 2019
Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys seems like a book I might have liked reading when I was younger.
When I didn't really question slut shaming.
When I might have enjoyed these characters, despite them being incredibly flat and stereotypical.
When I might have believed that love was this shallow.
When I might not have wanted to rip the main character's throat out.
Profile Image for Jennifer Wardrip.
Author 5 books489 followers
November 6, 2012
Reviewed by Jocelyn Pearce for TeensReadToo.com

Megan has always moved around a lot, but this time her living situation has changed even more drastically than usual. When she refused to pack up and move to South Korea with her parents, both in the army, they proposed another option: spending her last two years of high school living in Boston with the McGowans. John McGowan is an old friend of her father's. What makes this so different? The fact that the McGowans have seven sons. Megan is an only child, and can't imagine living with seven boys!

Life with Evan, Sean, Finn, Caleb, Ian, Miller, and Doug McGowan is as foreign to Megan as South Korea would have been. Her best friend from Texas, Tracy, even calls it an immersion experience; Megan will go in clueless and come out speaking the language of boys!

Even if the McGowan boys and Megan are supposed to be siblings, they don't exactly relate that way. After all, they haven't seen each other since they were little kids. Now Megan is in hostile territory; she's not exactly welcomed by each of the nine members of the McGowan family (though Regina, John's wife, is more than thrilled to have another female in the house, taking tomboyish Megan on shopping sprees and to the spa). And then there's the fact that Finn and Evan are, well, hot. And John and Regina even had a family meeting to tell the kids that they're all siblings now...but siblings don't want to kiss each other.

On top of dealing with the drama of living with the McGowan boys, Megan also has to handle starting over at a new school. She gets off to a good start when she makes the soccer team and even a few new possible friends. That quickly goes sour, though, when she is targeted by Hailey, Evan's girlfriend, who's jealous of Megan's talent on the soccer field--and her living arrangements. Can Megan handle Boston and the McGowan boys, or will South Korea turn out the be the easier option?

MEGAN MEADE'S GUIDE TO THE MCGOWAN BOYS is a fantastically fun book! It's full of great characters; even the minor characters seem three-dimensional. Kate Brian is a talented writer, and this novel is an awesome page-turner. I devoured this book; I read at every spare moment and took less than twenty-four hours to finish it--on a weekday! Megan's transition from shy to outspoken didn't feel one hundred percent real to me, but that was only a tiny issue; the book was still great. This is one book that definitely feels like there could be a sequel in the works (which is exciting), but that didn't stop it from being a complete (and completely awesome) story on its own.
Profile Image for Stephen.
1,068 reviews187 followers
November 10, 2011
I was in the mood for a light rom/com style book and this one fit the bill nicely. The plotline initially caught my attention because it reminded me of those 70's movies about large catholic families (Your, Mine and Ours, With Six you get Eggroll, etc)

In this case only child, Megan Meade is an army brat who's lived around the globe with her military parents but Korea is just "One Bridge Too Far." She rebels and her parents agree to let her stay in the States if she'll stay with friends of her folks who have seven sons.

For a girl who has previously been too shy to kindle a relationship with the boys she crushes, on, learning to live in a household with that much testosterone, and that much male pulchritude is a challenge.

The novel is fast paced, with just the right amount of teen snarkiness. The brothers are all pretty well distinguished, Megan is likeable and her ordeal is one that both guys and girls will find interesting.

I would recomend this as a good, light, fun read.
12 reviews1 follower
April 29, 2008
Title: Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys
Author: Kate Brian
Year: 2005
Publisher: Simnon Pulse
# of pages: 267
Genre: Non-fiction
Interest Level: ages 11 and up
Potential Hot Lava:
sex, drinking, cursing, vandalism, and fighting

General Response:
I generally liked this book. It took me reading about fifty pages before I became interested in the story line, but overall I felt that this book tryly demonstrated how life really is for a sixteen year old girl and her struggles with boys.

Subjects, themes, and Big Ideas:
Friendship, forgiveness, finding your identity, relationships, and romance

Megan Meade-sixteen year old girl who's parents moved to Korea and she is now living with her parents friends and their seven boys
Evan McGowan-one of the seven boys and Megan's crush
Miller McGowan-one of the seven boys who has Asperger's syndrome
Doug McGowan-one of the seven boys ("punk child")
Aimee Farmer- Megan's best friend
Hailey Farmer- Evan's girlfriend, Megan's enemy
Finn McGowan- one of the seven boys that Megan gets along with the best

This book is about a sixteen year old girl named Megan Meade. Megan's father was in the military and he was assigned to be stationed in Korea. Megan had moved all of her life and for once she didn't want to move away from the United States. Her parents reasoned with her and said the only way she could stay was if she moved to Massachusetts to live with their close friends, the McGowan's. Once Megan arrived at the McGowan house she saw all seven boys. Megan's world began to be very interesting. From the beginning Megan fell for Evan. He was a senior and he looked like he walked right out of the pages of an Abercrombie magazine. Megan also became close friends with Finn. Megan faced many obstacles once she entered school for the first day of her junior year. Megan found out that Evan had a girlfriend who would become her enemy. Many new events unravel throughout this book causing the reader to like every character and the end becomes a twisitng joy ride.

Strenghths: I felt this book did a good job of allowing us to understand Megan on a deep level and I could gain a good mental image of what she looked like, what her room looked like, and her feelings about the drama unfolding.

Also, the boys had their own destinct characters causing them to be easily identified

Drawbacks: The book was a little unrealistic at time causing me to not like the book as much as I could have

Teaching Ideas:

Study about Asperger's syndrome

have a Friendship unit

Clean up the town or city of vandalism like Megan and her friends did

have the students write a paper about the characters they relate to the most and why
Profile Image for Booknut 101.
849 reviews923 followers
March 1, 2013
It's like 'How to Lose a Guy In 10 Days' - but cuter, with SEVEN times the trouble, pranks, heartbreak and laughs!

'TooDamn-Funky: It's a start, ok. Been thinking bout the boyz. 'member last year my bro did that immersion thing in Venezuela?
Kciker5525: Where he learned to speak Spanish???
TooDamn-Funky: Yeah! u go for 2 weeks talk nothing but Spanish u come back fluent.
Kicker5535: ...????
TooDamn-Funky: Well this is like a guy immersion program!
Kicker5525: So...what. I'm going 2 b fluent in GUY?
TooDamn-Funky: Exactly! u will c what they talk about alone. U will c how they r with each other. U will c how they THINK!! AND WHEN IT'S DONE YOU'LL BE ABLE TO WRITE A GUY GUIDE BOOK!!
Kicker5525: U r deranged.

Megan Meade's not a girly-girl. But, like any girl, she wonders...what makes guys tick? Why doesn't life comes with a 'Guide On How To Understand The Male Demographic'?

When her army-based parents want to move the whole family to South Korea, Megan puts her foot down - and is given an ultimatum. South Korea...or the McGowans. Mr McGowan - Mr Meade's friend - offers to let Megan stay with his family if she wants, and Megan recalls that the McGowan family has seven boys.

The perfect chance to get some insight on the opposite sex and start on that longed-for guide!

But the boys turn out to be a motley bunch of annoying, intelligent, hard-ass, sensitive, pranking...boys.

And Megan isn't sure how to deal with the species in their natural environment. There's Evan with his winning smile and good looks, Finn with his sweet thoughtfulness and artistic talent, Doug with his 'gangster' attitude and childish pranks, Miller with his intelligent mind, and more. Each one is different. But as Megan gets to know them better, she comes to one conclusion.

Boys. Are. Unpredictable.

And maybe - just maybe - that's the best thing about them :)

A chick-flick experience, this book is as sweet as apple pie and bound to capture the hearts of its audience - giving them a guide to boys that may just be a useful tool for every girl to have on her as she ventures into their world!

Profile Image for Angelica Juarez Gonzalez.
313 reviews74 followers
November 3, 2017
Kate Brian, yo solo quiero saber:

1-) ¿Por qué no dejaste, por lo menos, a Megan con tres de los siete chicos McGowan? Doug, Finn, Evan, y sería feliz ¿Y la continuación?

3-) ¿Por qué Miller tenía que ser tan querible? ¿Por qué? ¿Y por qué Finn también?

2-) ¿Qué es esa mirada de Evan al final? ¿QUÉ ES?
Angélica Juárez’s guide to the Juárez boys:

Profile Image for Jenn.
1,764 reviews303 followers
March 27, 2019
A very cutesy read but was very unimpressed with the wrap-up/ending.

Growing up with parents in the army, Megan is used to moving from place to place. But when her parents are transferred to Korea she puts her foot down. Her parents allow her to stay in the US to finish high school by placing her in the care of family friends. Family friends who have 7 sons. Yes, 7. Can you even imagine a house with 7 boys? That poor mother. Anyway, high school girl moves in with multiple high school boys, and I'm sure you can see where this is going.

I really liked Megan. She was very sure of herself and not in a way that made her come off conceited. She just knew her limits and what she wanted to do. The only thing she couldn't seem to do was master the boys. Well, most of them. Finn was nice to her from the start (and my top pick for love interest) and then her relationship with the autistic Miller was just adorable. I loved how patient she was with him and how she actually took the time to research his condition to know how to communicate with him. There was really only one negative thing about Megan and it was her attraction to the brother, Evan. Evan was the resident flirt who had a girlfriend and Megan was over there being all 'we have a connection'. Girl, grow up. He flirts with everything and is kind of a douche.

While the story was cute and I was rooting for Megan and Finn, the ending was very lackluster. There will be slight spoilers here but obviously something happens to make Megan want to flee. If I were her parents and I purchased a plane ticket for my daughter to come to Korea, I would be hella pissed if she did not get on that plane. And then, the one scene I wanted - the Megan coming back to the house scene after everything - wasn't there. It was completely skipped and we fast forwarded like a week and it literally showed NOTHING. Nothing about where they all stand with each other. Nothing about the issues they all had. Literally nothing. I was so disappointed.

So overall, a cute story but ruined by the ending.
Profile Image for J.Elle.
752 reviews111 followers
March 5, 2008
I liked this. While it was predicatable, it was still interesting and more importantly, it didn't try to be something other than an entertaining book about raging high school hormones and the usual "does he or doesn't he like me" teenage drama. Teenage girl goes to live with her parent's close friends to finish her last two years of high school rather than move again with her military parents and finds herself living with five hot boys that she is supposed to treat like brothers... Like I said, typical, but the 15 year old girl in me loved it.
Profile Image for Paradoxical.
351 reviews35 followers
June 16, 2013
It wasn't like I was expecting anything outstanding or even anything more than some mindless fluff read, but Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys was almost painful to get through. You have a girl who's staying in a house full of seven boys and there's the drama of a new school, impending crushes, and the obligatory mean girl who is out to destroy our heroine. While I would like to think I went into reading this book with eyes wide open (shallow, I was expecting shallow, shallow fun), I just couldn't get into it.

The characters are different, but they're all flat. You have the popular jock guy, the jerk, the artist, and so on. At least they're all distinguishable from one another (in a way, but more on that in a bit), but they don't have much depth to any of them. It's all very predictable, but in a tired sort of way. After a while I couldn't tell who was the older brother, who was younger, what ages or what grades any of them were in, other than three of them. Or four. Which I suppose is a little more than half of the brothers, but still. It's all sort of jumbled in my head and I couldn't care enough to puzzle it out (or backtrack, ha).

Megan drove me crazy. She's so painfully obvious with her crush, but I've never been a fan of the main character carrying on about a guy who's taken. Wait, no. I've never been a fan of a main character who keeps trying to inch her way into a guy's affections, who keeps hoping she'll get kissed or whatever, when that guy has a girlfriend. There are ways that a story could be done that I would not mind this so much, but in this book Megan's crush on Evan just made me uncomfortable.

Then the way her feelings yo-yo back and forth to another brother... well.

And the way the book ended was frustrating. It was so cliche it was laughable, but there wasn't any real oomph to the end. It just sort of faded away, everything was glossed over, and there aren't any real concrete decisions made. It leaves the book open to the sequel, but I think this is just a standalone. It's a story about Megan's growth, but it's also heavy on Megan's romances, and I think the book dropped the ball on one of those two. Any little problems are smoothed over in ways you could see from a mile away, and there's nothing new. There's not even a well done cliche. 1 star.
Profile Image for Daisy Delfin.
969 reviews134 followers
July 6, 2023
3.5 stars rounded up to 4 stars

Megan rebels, when her parents tell her that the army is sending them to South Korea. She wants to stay where she is, but that not an option. Her parents give her two options, move with them to South Korea or stay with their parents long time friends the McGowan family, who are a family of nine people, mum, dad and seven boys.

Megan a little tomboy herself, decides to stay with the McGowan family. Where the parents are happy to have her, some of the boys are not happy.

The story is a coming of age story. I think Megan being an army brat is very mature for her age. She has a kind heart and she know what she is and what she likes.

The McGowan boys are living their own world. The boys don't seem to know their strong points and their weaknesses. And they need to learn, that a family is never for granted, even though it often feels like that. Some of them don't like Megan and want her gone, some want her to stay. Megan has a hard time fining out how her relationship to the Boy are and also to the girls in school. While dealing with the star soccer player, who is an insecure bitch, Megan has to learn how to live in her new world.

I liked Megan, because she was never ashamed of who she was, while trying to be the girl, Mrs. McGowan wanted her to be and finding her place.

The ending had some surprises in store for the reader but also Megan, because she got some insights about her.
Profile Image for Jessica.
1,071 reviews215 followers
January 17, 2020
Original Rating in 2005: ★★★★★
Reread Rating in 2020: ★★★☆☆

Blog | Twitter | Instagram | Review can also be found here at Booked J.

Hang on, this book is HOW OLD? I'm in shock. Me vs. the passage of time, round three thousand and forty two. Listen, back in the day, Kate Brian was IT for me. Along with Cecily von Ziegesar and Melissa de la Cruz. I was a STAN and owned (ahem, I still own a lot of their works) pretty much every book I could get my hand on. There's not a single doubt in my mind that I owe a lot of my love of reading to Brian.

While Lucky T and Private were my absolute ride or die favourites from Brian, I can vividly remember curling up in bed during high school and devouring this novel. No joke, I probably read it a dozen times one summer. A. DOZEN. It was just pure warm-and-fuzzy magic and a total easy, slip-under-the-covers and lose yourself for a few hours read. Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys was probably one of my first YA rom-com loves.

On a whim, I decided to reread it to see how it's held up through the years. And while it's aged fairly well since, it's lost a bit of its magic for me. Whether this is because of all that I've read since, or merely because I burned myself out on it a decade ago, is anyone's guess.

Brian's writing is still as charming and full of spark as it was then. There's romance, humor and general fluffy moments that keep the pages turning. I found that I liked the story and the many characters featured a lot less than I did as a teenager, but there was still this indulgent and sickly sweet feeling that came with reading it. Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys isn't necessarily my cup of tea any longer, and I had some issues with it that are common when looking back on this era, but it was still enjoyable and fun.

One thing I know is that I'll always look fondly back on Kate Brian and her backlist. It takes me back to summertime and my teenage years.. It's easy to fall back into it and is not unlike stopping by to say hello to an old friend.
Profile Image for Tash.
291 reviews55 followers
June 26, 2011
Oh my... <3 <3 <3

I was searching for a non-series book to read and I found this one. When I finished this one, I was craaving for a seqeal! By the last pages all I can think of was "No, no, no. this can't be it!". I'm so frustrated right now. *sigh* The book is great as well as the characters. But the ending is really asdfghjkl;! Haha.

I liked Megan's character, she's not girly but she's not boyish. SHE PLAY'S SOCCER! Haha. She made a big impact on the boys lives. In some parts, they blame her for the stuff that happend (having curfews, being grounded, the fight between two brothers, etc.). She stood up against them and I liked that about her.

When I was reading, I made a McGowan Boys list. Just to know who's who because there's seven of them, I had a hard time memorizing their characters. This might help you.

(eldest to youngest)

1. Sean- High school graduate, in a band, has a cool motorcycle, one of the 'smart ones'

2. Evan- supposed to be 'The Perfect Guy', has a girlfriend (Hailey, Megan's teammate. She hates Megan), a senior

3. Finn (drool)- Artist (as in he paints but never finished a single painting of his ex-muse, Kayla Bird), junior, sweet and caring, has blue-gray eyes (my weakness. lol)

4.5 Doug- Artist (graffiti and stuff like that), hated Megan, sophomore, another 'smart one', jerk, became nice, Miller's twin brother.

4.5 Miller- Has Asperger's Syndrome, likes stuff to be arranged according to size, obsessed with the NY Yankees, Liked by Aimee (Megan's best friend and Hailey's younger sister)

6&7 Ian and Cabel- Little kids, likes playing pranks on Megan

My fave line(s)/quote(s):

* "All I know is, he found out you left and he locked himself in the shed and barricaded the door. No one seen him since,"Doug said. "when I bolted, Sean and Evan were trying to boost Caleb up onto the roof so he could look the skylight and make sure the kid wasn't dead or something."

* "Evan stopped completely. He was staring at her with those intense eyes. Staring right into her. Just like he had in those couple of moments when she had thought for a split second, that he wanted to kiss her"

* "Boys are unpredictable. This maybe not be news, but I'm starting to think it's one of the best things about them."

I <3 FINN!!!

Overall, this is a great read. But the ending!!! I'm still frustrated. Haha.

Profile Image for Annie Brewer.
Author 15 books764 followers
January 12, 2014
I totally loved this book!! So much fun and great moments. Living with 7 boys has got to be so overwhelming. But Megan was awesome! She definitely changed the McGowan household for the better. And who wouldn't wanna live with 2 of the hot older brothers? Even though one was kind of a jerk at times. But I still liked him. But the ending was so great! I didn't expect a certain someone to change his ways, but it was really great of him. But again, it was thanks to Megan for standing up for herself against the boys that treated her like crap through most of the book. I really enjoyed the story and the characters. Even the bitch Hailey, surprised me. I love that Megan was a soccer player. It brought me back to my soccer playing days as a youngin'.

I loved that each boy in the household was different. Ian, Sean, Miller, Evan, Finn, Caleb and Doug. They were a handful. I felt bad for their mother, having to clean up after all the messy, stinky boys. But Regina was a badass mama. She was tough and didn't take shit from any of her kids. I just don't know how she did it. But they were also very fun to read about. Despite their nasty attitudes and horrible demeanor, they had a heart somewhere in their brains.

There was plenty of angst and sibling rivalry. And when Megan first came to live with them, they were so cruel to her. But Evan and Finn were sweet to her from the beginning. But then, Evan's jealous bitchy girlfriend started shit and made up lies about her, that's when my like for him went out the window. I'm just glad he changed his tune.

I love these teen novels that center around high school and first time everything. It reminds me of how naive we all are at that age. To be a teen again....sigh.

The only thing that bothered me was the ending. I mean, it just kinda ended. I mean, I can see who she'd end up with. But...it doesn't really confirm that. I mean,(I'm saying, I mean a lot it seems) yeah maybe it's left up to our imagination? I don't know. I just wish I'd have a little more closure with the ending. I was happy with what happened at the airport, I was even hoping that something like that would happen. But still, once they got home it was just a little confusing.

Aside from that, I loved it. I'm so glad I finally picked this book up. It's been on my shelf for over a year. It was quick, witty, fun and just the perfect read when you want something light and easy. I definitely recommend it.
Profile Image for Jamie.
40 reviews
December 29, 2010
I went to Borders on Monday night hoping to find a fluffy chick-lit because I've been reading too much paranormal books. I searched each bookcase then I found a semi-beat up copy of Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys. At first, I was hesitant to purchase it because of the cover and was completely unsure if it will satisfy my dire need for a girly book. However, I went ahead and purchased it without any high expectations. Boy was I completely wrong. The story kept me up all night; I couldn't put it down for one second. I just had to finish it and find out more about her comedic life with seven confusing, irritable, yet lovable boys!

The story is both predictable and unpredictable. I know that sounds like an utter weird comment, but when I was reading it I had all this predictions that happened and some that were far off from what I thought would occur. Kate Brian kept me on my toes all night. In the beginning, I seriously thought Megan would end up with a certain brother because of her complete focus on him. Her narration always brings him up. Then I changed my mind half way because I began to notice some discreet actions from another brother, but then Kate Brian throws an unexpected twist, which threw me off. I swear, Kate Brian is amazing at throwing some twists on this book. Plus, the characters were relatable because they were so real to me. Each brother were different, but they were so together. It's like they are different puzzle pieces coming together, but can't be complete without Megan. I'm also glad that Kate Brian talked about Asperger Syndrome because I enjoy stories with characters who have it. I am fascinated about the disorder. Anyway, I'm digressing. I really do like this book, so I say go pick up a copy and devour it. =)
Profile Image for Rachel.
Author 14 books1,336 followers
March 14, 2012
I absolutely adored this book. So much that I didn't want it to end and kept flipping pages, knowing there had to be more. Right? I mean, I have to know more about what happens now with flirtatious, gorgeous Evan, and soulful, artful, beautiful Finn. And Doug and Miller, I felt like I was just beginning to understand their characters and....and....and, yeah, I kinda got emotionally connected to this book. To Megan and her journey. I laughed a lot, smiled even more, and even cried a bit.

This was my first Kate Brian book but I can't wait to dig in and find some more :)
Profile Image for Sara.
1,454 reviews108 followers
November 16, 2012
The McGowan brothers are really fucked up!
What the hell is wrong with them?!?!
Evan is certainly a hottie but.. God, he's just a stupid jerk, so full of himself!
Doug was a jerk too and mostly trying to be hateful most times, though in the end he appeared to be the smartest one and even funny, and made amends.
Miller was a bit weird and scary with his autism and all, especially in the biginning, but afterwards he mostly was cute and calmer than the other brothers (which is saying a lot, seeing that Miller has issues and tended to freak out if something was off.)
Finn was the cuter one and I liked him almost immediately. Artistic and sweet and caring, it was hard not to fall for him and love him. Although, after that kiss in the shed, I totally didn't like the way he acted. Wanted to punch the light out of him. Balls, man! Balls! God, you really are all babies!
Hailey was mostly hateful and a real bitch and most of the time I just thought she needed a good bitch-slapping and some sense beaten into that crappy head of hers. Get a grip, dude!
Aimee was the nicest girlfriend among the girls, loyal and trustworthy. A real friend. I liked her a lot. I couln't imagine how it was possible for her to be Hailey's sister. One evil sister and an angelic one. A different womb maybe? Uh... maybe.
Regina freaked me out often times, though I understood her need for a girly time with Megan, the only other girl among 7 men. Oh my God, I would go crazy! But still, she was just so... eccessively excited and girly even for my likes? Even I don't wear much pink or enjoy much hours at a SPA. I mean, a massage would be okay, I love it, but the whole manicure, pedicure, face mask etc? God, no! Would bore me and annoy me to death. And wouldn't get me relaxed at all. What's relaxing about getting a manicure or pedicure? Yeah, not much.
Anyway, I could understand both of their points of view.
John kind of scared me a little. He was capable of embarrassing Megan or put her in misery. Some times adults don't understand how much they can embarrass us. Especially men.
Anyways... all in all the book was good. It even made me laugh and also cry. I was tempted to give it 4 stars, but when I got to the end I was like "Really?!?! WTF!?!?" I was so disappointed! Even more by discovering there isn't a sequel apparently. The book ended just... weird. It didn't really have an ending. It just leaves you wanting more, and with a bittersweet curiousity about Finn and Megan. And what the hell does Evan want now? Just back off, jerk! You don't deserve a girl like Megan. You are really disappointing. So just stay away from her. She's found her guy now.

I'm rating it 3.5 stars.
1 review2 followers
December 5, 2011
I seriously think Megan Meade's is a must read. I read this book in one night. It was impossible to put down! i love megan's realness in the situation of living with 7 boys. I mean, you are not always perfect. we all know that. She gets embarrased, gets angry, and is herself throughout the whole book. Though i really hate that she wasted her time on hot, flirty Evan when sweet, artistic, irresistable Finn. Doug i imagine as a little eminem.. i know thats a little inaccurate, but i still do. I think he's hilarious and adds a nice twist to the book.

I also love megan's friends in this book. They stick by her most of the time except when they don't know what to believe. Hailey is on the edge for the whole book... She comes off as sort of a bitch but also is kind of a good friend nearing the end of the book. Aimee was the best. She believed megan throughout the extent of the book and was a great friend.

Now getting to the juicy stuff... FINN. he's amazing. I wish he didn't waste his time on kayla bird (i mean seriously..what kind of name is that???) and went straight for megan and i wish megan had a little more of a thing with evan.. --(SPOILER ALERT)-- like when her and evan were in the sleeping bags outside their house, i wish they had kissed or something because that would have made it more interesting, but it also would have created a lot more drama which would have been bad.

Nearing the end.. i thought the plane thing was brilliant. i wish the whole family was there getting her back, not just doug even though he was incredibly cute and sweet (yes i just called doug sweet and cute.. who knew?) and when they were playing frisbee i wished finn did something.. ANYTHING AT ALL. not just say "im glad youre back" and thats it.. there def. needs to be a sequel. like now. NOW.

also read "Shut Out" by Shut Out
Profile Image for Natalie.
2,598 reviews60 followers
April 28, 2019
3.5 stars...maybe.

The premise was really cute, and I was actually really enjoying it - until the ending! Ugh!! This book was written in 2005 and no sequel was ever written....but it was definitely set up for a sequel, so because of that, there’s an open ended ending. I was rooting for Finn the whole time, and was so excited when they finally kissed, but then they never talked about it (which was weird), and there were hints that she was back to liking Evan? Ugh! Evan treated her like dirt, so while he was likable enough in the beginning, I didn’t end up liking him much. Also, the kiss between Finn and Megan took place in the shed which was basically Finn’s art studio where no one ever bothered him, but all of a sudden his helicopter mom was right there to eavesdrop on the kiss??? Literally no one but Megan and Finn ever went into this shed and the mother walks by at just the right time?

There was also a bit too much drama at times. And why would Hailey, the gorgeous, popular, athletic girlfriend of Evan, have sex with Evan’s younger brother Doug, the Eminem wannabe??? That was really dumb of her to do, and what about the bro code????

The other issue I had was - how old are these kids? Here’s what I know:

Sean - I think is the oldest, maybe 19? He spent most of his time working on his motorcycle, and it didn’t mention that he was in college or anything, so it was hard to tell

Evan - it mentioned he was the second oldest, a senior in high school, so 18?

Finn - the same year as Megan, a junior, so 17

Miller and Doug - twins, but they’re in high school with Megan and the others so maybe sophomores????

Ian - no clue, but seemed really young, like 12??? But Doug was always hanging out with him so I don’t know

Caleb - I thought he was around 5 in spots, but then acted older too. I really don’t have a clue.

I was ready to give it 4 stars, but when the love triangle was introduced on the LAST PAGE, I just couldn’t do it. The story is still cute though.

This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Kellie Sheridan.
Author 29 books205 followers
May 26, 2011
I’ve been meaning to read this one for awhile now because the concept just sounded like way too much fun. Being thrown from the world of an only child to living with seven boys ranging in ages from toddler to practically adult. What’s not to love? Well, the chaos for one and all those crazy boy antics, but overall a very fun situation that made for a very fun book.

Megan’s character was very relate-able. She’s shy, athletic and a decent person. Someone I could definitely be friends with. The other female characters in the book are alright, a little stereotypical but not to the point where it negatively affects anything (that it’s not supposed to). Now… the boy characters, not bad at all!

Most of the seven McGowan boys are well defined individuals. Yeah, a couple of them are just filler, but there are seven, more than enough. We’ve got the super sexy flirty brother, the deep artsy brother, the asshole wanna be rapper brother, the quiet motorcycle fanatic rapper and the brother with autism. And those are just the ones in the dateable range! Their parents are pretty stereotypical, tough dad to keep control of seven boys and the mom who is clearly starved for female companionship.

I found some of the writing and dialogue could use a little more revision but I’m wasn’t feeling picky about that kind of thing so I still really enjoyed this book. A lot of the reviews on it seemed to think the whole thing was too on the predictable side, and I guess I have to agree there. I probably could have guessed at a lot of what was going to happen, but sometimes it’s nice to read a book like that. Comforting, I guess. So, if you’re looking for your next mindblowing read then this isn’t it, but if your looking for something fun and girly, then definitely give this one a go!
Profile Image for Ellie.
338 reviews48 followers
May 10, 2015
I didn't think it was just okay... but I didn't like it enough that it deserves four stars. Maybe 3.5. It's the first time I'm doing a half-a-star, and it's not exactly sitting right with me.

So I picked up a copy of this book from the library after reading its synopsis. It reminded me completely of a typical manga plot: a girl gets sent to live with a large, all-boy, (handsome) family after she refuses to move to Korea with her parents. (I felt even more on the right track when I read that they were moving to Korea.)

In the end, I still haven't decided if it really does resemble it. Some parts do, especially when the boys deign to completely ignore her. Also, their various personalities, covering every spectrum of possible boy-personalities there are, reminded me of a manga.

The plot itself may have been slightly mediocre, and the writing was engaging, but not captivating.

I could write more, but it wouldn't amount to much.

I liked the ending quite a bit. Megan life's is not completely figured out yet, but it is heading in that direction.

I would recommend this book to manga-likers/-lovers. I would be quite interested in hearing their opinion about it. Also, to a typical pre-teen looking for a cute, boy-filled book, with plenty of ridiculous drama to go around.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,440 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.