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The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions)

3.24  ·  Rating details ·  1,080 ratings  ·  218 reviews
A ridiculously cute, formerly-famous new guy dropping into your life? It's practically every girl's dream.

But not Jules McCallister-Morgan's.

I realize that on paper I look like your standard type-A, neurotic, overachiever. And maybe I am. But I didn't get to be the editor of my school's long-revered newspaper by just showing up*. I have one main goal for my senior year-e
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published April 5th 2016 by Poppy
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Sarah Some readers receive ARCs (advance readers' copies) provided by the publisher. Other times, a reader may be acquainted with the author and has already…moreSome readers receive ARCs (advance readers' copies) provided by the publisher. Other times, a reader may be acquainted with the author and has already read the book.(less)

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Rachel Jing
Mar 28, 2016 rated it it was ok
Okay ummm so. I just finished this book, and here are my thoughts.


I expected this to be a cute, romantic book with some twist or betrayal or drama, but I did NOT expect it to be 95% about this rivalry between two high school CLUBS. No offense, but I couldn't care less about The Crest and TALON. I ended up just skimming through most of the book, and only reading the parts between Alex and Jules (Julia???) which I will get to later.

I know this newspaper is really important to Jules,
Elyse  Walters
Feb 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Amy Spalding is pure guilty pleasure reading for me! I also support the type of books she writes for growing hormonal decent kids. I can't even pretend to read her Young Adult books as passing them on to my daughters - or to my friends who have teens---(but I have many times)...
I get the warm-fuzzies being transported into the teen world of the wholesomeness ---(not without problems), that Amy creates.

"The Reece Malcolm List" is still my favorite:
....a young girl's father has died at the beginn
Taylor Knight
Feb 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs
I had really high hopes for this book. I wanted it to be well written and fun and be an extremely fluffy contemporary that would get me out of my reading slump. And The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) was exactly what I hoped it would be. It's so much fun to read and I loved it so much. I loved the concept and even though I got frustrated with Jules at times, I didn't find her to be extremely annoying. I thought this book was really funny. I laughed out loud a few times and the over ...more
Fafa's Book Corner
Review posted on Fafa's Book Corner !

Beware spoilers ahead!

I had heard about this book through Netgalley. It sounded interesting and I requested it. After some time had passed I completely forgot that I requested it. When I went into my Netgalley account I saw that I was denied for this book. That's when I remembered this book even existed. I decided to give it a go because I liked Jules. I am happy to say that I enjoyed it!

The book begins with Jules as she is given information on the new stude
1 Star, Completed June 6, 2016

I really want to be able to say that if I read this three-ish years ago when I was a senior in high school that the story would be relatable and appeal to me more. But, alas, I still wouldn’t think I’d enjoy it.

In The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions), Jules McCallister-Morgan is a senior at Eagle Vista Academy. She’s an honors student, organization freak, and may even be slightly neurotic. Her idea of an ideal senior year is earning her position as edito
Love, love, love this romcom about a high-achieving senior girl who finds herself falling for the former boy band member Alex when he transfers to her school. It's funny, fun, and it's full of heart. Jules's problems aren't the kind that will shatter the world, but they make HER world tough. That's what I love about Spalding's books -- they're stories about girls who have challenges in their everyday lives and find ways to work with those challenges, rather than against them. The newspaper edito ...more
Feb 18, 2016 rated it it was ok
If you follow me on Twitter (which you totally should; there’s fun gifs and you get to hear about the dumb shenanigans I get myself into) then you know I was struggling with whether or not I should give up on this book. I ultimately decided to do so after reaching the 60% mark. I’m not writing the book off completely, since I think there were some really awesome components in it, but it ended up coming down to me getting annoyed with the main character mixed with some “I don’t really care about ...more
This was delightfully adorable and laugh-out-loud funny on a whole lot of occasions. I can already tell Jules is the kind of character people are gonna get really frustrated with (and at times I did too) because A) she's 99% of the reason when stuff in her own life goes south and B) the entire premise of the book is her caring a lot about something in a way I don't think everyone will relate to, but A) is reality; I've definitely been there, and I'm in the camp that totally gets B) and would've ...more
Gray Cox
Jun 28, 2018 rated it did not like it
Lol, why did I bother??
Sherwood Smith
Feb 29, 2016 added it
Shelves: romance
Copy courtesy of NetGalley

A teen romance told in a sprightly, engagingly snarky narrative voice from the point of view of a totally focused alpha girl. I liked the way Spalding made Jules believable as an only child over-achiever, utterly focused on grade point average, SATs, and getting into her target college in spite of formidable odds. A girl whose extra curricular activities include dog walking at a rescue shelter because she loves walking dogs, but has until now not included boys.

When she
nope, definitely not interest anymore. 100% no.
The Candid Cover (Olivia & Lori)
Full Review on The Candid Cover

The New Guy is one of the most original and creative books I’ve read so far this year. It is all about a school newspaper, rivalry, and a character who used to be in a popular boy band. To top it all off, the main character has two moms, which is definitely uncommon in YA. This whole book is just a massive rollercoaster!

The New Guy is such an interesting and unique book! It tells the story of a school newspaper. There are so many things that I loved about this, esp
Tee loves Kyle Jacobson
I have to say that this book had me on the floor laughing. Lord I remember high school and I hated it so much. There were so many expectations placed on you and your parents wanted one thing and you wanted another. So much chaos coming in every direction as you approach your senior year but for Jules she has her goals and she is determined to meet them.

Jules has her life mapped out. So for her senior year she wants to be the editor of her school newspaper and get an early acceptance in to the co
Claude's Bookzone
1.5 Stars

Another cookie cutter romance. Quirky girl meets cool guy (I can't remember if he had a lopsided grin but he definitely had floppy hair). Romance blooms. But oh no! They are now on opposites sides of a school feud that nobody else cares about. However, their attraction to each other and the rightness of their love triumphs over adversity. The end.

Update: To be clear, I don't have an issue with formulaic romance novels at all. The elements that make some more enjoyable than others are:
Madi ~☆TheBookNerdDiaries☆~
Don't let how fast I finished the last 50% fool you. I feel like a 3 is too high but a 2 is too low.

RTC when I get better.
I love YA books, but I do have to admit, sadly, that “kissing” is not my best genre as a reader these days. Although saying so simultaneously brings to mind both “ the golden gates of childhood had forever closed behind them ,” and Fred Savage:

Is this a kissing book?

Yes, kind of! This is a kissing book, and it’s funny and there’s good characters, and a culture war to boot. Perfect fun.

Jules, the most dedicated editor of a high school paper one has ever seen outside of Paris Geller, gets
Jordan (The Heart of a Book Blogger)
This review and more can be found at The Heart of a Book Blogger.

Do you ever just get in those moods where you just need a cute, silly, and fun story to read? That’s the kind of mood I was in when I read The New Guy (and Other Senior Year Distractions) and it was the perfect answer for me. The New Guy is a light, fun, and charming read, and it fits perfectly into the romcom genre.

Jules is the overachieving high school student. She’s focused on starting her senior year off right by becoming edito
Disclosure: I received a copy from the author/publisher, in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my review in any shape or form.

The New Guy and other senior year distractions was definitely different. The primary focus was print and visual media. I totally loved the idea that this was not the classic cliché of a cheerleader. We’re seeing how important print and visual media is in our every day life and I really liked that about the book.

The main characters in this book are Ju
Jess (the cozy reader)
Feb 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Big thanks to Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publishing and NetGalley for an ARC copy for review.

When I got approved for this book on NetGalley, I was incredibly happy. This seemed like the perfect light hearted YA novel I needed to get me out of my recent reading slump. It certainly did the trick, but I was also pleasantly surprised by how charming and funny it was.

"I missed how much you blush," Alex says.
"That's the worst thing about me!"
"Nah." He grins some more. "Doughnuts?"
Mar 30, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: review-copy
2.5 stars round to 3
I won an ARC of this book from The Novl.

I was so excited when I won a copy of this book from The Novl’s Boy Band March Madness Contest. The book sounded like a really cute, fun read. However it turned out not to be the book for me. Within the first few chapters, the main character annoyed me so much that I wanted to just stop. But I decided to continue on because I thought surely there must be a point where she learns from her behavior. She just seemed like she had a giant st
Michelle Wrona
This review can also be found on A Thousand Lives Lived, check it out for more!

A year ago, I was fortunate to receive a review copy of the beautiful, memorable debut novel by Amy Spalding: Kissing Ted Callahan. I was mesmerized by the plot, and how music spoke to the author and the characters of the story, bringing all musical lovers together into a story that had a bittersweet, but fluffy ending. A year later, I discovered that Spalding is going to release another bittersweet, funky story of he
J. Greene
This book is's so, *sigh*. This book. I had high hopes for this one. After hearing copious amounts of praise for Spalding's previous book, Kissing Ted Callahan (And Other Guys)--I thought this would be a cute story about the last year of high school, and the new guy and whatever other silly, crazy things might occur.

And it was that but it was so darn cheesy and annoying.

Let's start off with the beginning. No, let's start off with what the story is about.

Alex is a former band boy member
Mar 13, 2016 rated it it was ok
The thing with THE NEW GUY is that it sounds hilarious, and while I can’t deny it had its funny moments, most of them were just too cheesy or unbelievable, making me cringe instead of laugh. I actually felt secondhand embarrassment for the dialogue and characters’ actions.

The actual plot of the novel revolves around the main character, Jules, and her former-star-sometimes-boyfriend, Alex, and how they sort of end up on opposite sides of a newspaper vs. new media war. Unfortunately this aspect d
Natalie (Never trust a duck)
Thank you Novl for the ARC in exchange for a review!!!!

Jules is the MC, and she’s got her heart set on journalism, so naturally, she’s obsessed with the fact of becoming editor-in-chief. And in comes Alex, the boy from a one-hit-wonder boy band that disbanded (I thought it was punny too) a few years back. Jules may have gaped a little bit upon first meeting him. I may have as well.

Alex was the major redeeming factor of this book. CAN SOMEONE SAY SWOONWORTHY? Because he was. Gosh, he’s adorable.
Melissa (YA Book Shelf)
Mar 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
I'll be the first to admit that I've never been the biggest fan of boy bands - the last one that I really listened to was New Kids on the Block (before they became NKOTB), so the back story for Alex - the new guy that Jules finds so distracting - of a ex-member of a one-hit wonder boy band didn't wow me. But, in spite of this, The New Guy (And Other Senior Year Distractions) did grab my attention and caused me to spend the large part of one day and the morning of the next, glued to its pages and ...more
Kevin Fanning
May 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fanfic-adjacent
UGH I loved this. The last chapter! I was screaming. This book is hilarious (I have ~20 pages dog-eared with the parts that got genuine LOLs), sweet, charming, and STRESSFUL (in the best possible way).

The main character's brain is fascinating and makes her not super reliable as a narrator, at least in terms of her self-awareness; I was in awe of Ames' ability to tell the story in and around the information we receive from Jules.

ALSO: if you are interested in fanfiction! This is a book about fal
E. Kottaras
Nov 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Amy Spalding is one of my favorite writers, period. I loved her most recent book, THE NEW GUY - besides the fact that there's a former boy band love interest (I mean, how awesome), Jules is a fantastic narrator who must figure out how to navigate the unexpected complications of her senior year - a new (secret) boyfriend, a rival "news" organization that's seeking to undermine her beloved school newspaper, and the near loss of her best friend, who's tired of Jules's many distractions. Spalding wr ...more
Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars!

I'm just going to keep this review short and sweet. I thought this book was a super cute, fun read. It was very easy to get into and I finished it in one sitting. The New Guy reminded me a lot of what it was like to be in high school and young love. I thought the characters were fun and entertaining, even if they did frustrate me at times. This is the perfect YA romance. It's sweet, funny and just overall a good read. This is my first book by this author and I look forwa
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a cute book, but there were so many important themes kind of hidden within. I love that we can get teens to read this type of book and hopefully learn something about others and themselves while doing so.

First idea in the book that really struck me, was how Jules did not find anything wrong, embarrassing, or weird about having two moms. In fact, it took well into the second chapter (I think) before I even realized her parents weren't male and female.

The next theme in the book that I enj
Samantha (WLABB)
Jul 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Rating: 3.5 Stars

I thought this was a fun look at what happens, when a very driven young woman becomes a little sidetracked by. Jules had plans. She was going to be editor of the school paper and earn her way into Brown. She had no time for drama, but it found her, in the form direct competition for the newspaper and a wonderful new student named Alex.

Things I loved:
• Jules' family, her moms were awesome, and it was always nice being at home with them.
• The dog walking
• Alex, he was so sweet a
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Book Review: The New Guy 1 2 Jan 11, 2017 01:59AM  

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Amy Spalding grew up in St. Louis, but now lives in the better weather of Los Angeles. She has a B.A. in Advertising & Marketing Communications from Webster University, and an M.A. in Media Studies from The New School. Amy studied longform improv at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre.

By day, she manages the digital media team for an indie film advertising agency. By later day and night, Amy wri

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