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The Pretender

(Black Mountain Academy)

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  328 ratings  ·  76 reviews
They all know me as Ben Beltran, a poor kid from a working class town who lucked into a baseball scholarship at elite Black Mountain Academy.
That’s mostly a lie.
There’s a lot at stake and I have no patience for some uptight snot who sticks her nose in where it doesn’t belong.
Camden Galway is another scholarship case from my crappy neighborhood and she’s just begging to
Kindle Edition, 208 pages
Published December 8th 2020 by Amazon Digital Services
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Average rating 4.30  · 
Rating details
 ·  328 ratings  ·  76 reviews

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Dora Koutsoukou
Jan 29, 2021 rated it liked it
3 🙂❤️🙂⭐️s

A ya romance read that didn’t thrill me. It was well written, nicely developed and paced, with medium angst and drama.
Melissa  ❤️ bookaddict_fanatic
This book was everything and had me hanging on every word from the first chapter to the last! This book had it all.....a little drama, a pinch of suspense and whole bunch of swoon. Ben and Camden started as enemies and we watched their relationship grow to so much more while discovering how deep their love would go. Eventually the secrets Ben had hidden would come back to cause chaos in his life. If you want to know the secrets and feel the love flowing between the pages for these two characters ...more
Melissa Machado
Dec 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Pretender is standalone book from the Black Mountain Academy series written by Multiple Authors. The Pretender was written by Cora Brent and is an enemies to lovers romance that did not disappoint! This story focuses on Ben Beltran and Camden Galway.

Ben is the quiet type, kind of a loner if you will, and he makes sure not to get too close to people. He has a lot of demons, resentment, anger and bitterness inside. He lashes out at people as a defense mechanism.  But Ben is also smart, respon
Dec 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed this story

Ben and Camden each have their own hang ups (for entirely different reasons) and watching them work through them admit that they actually like each other was a very good read.
Safety gang:

Completely safe
No ow/om drama
Though the hero does have a past with experience, this is actually a double V romance
Yoneidis Martín Martínez
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Miriam Rivera
Dec 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Camndem and Ben are your typical high school outcasts. Both attend Black Mountain Academy with scholarships but not everything is as it seems. We enter a high school world full of teen angst, mystery and romance. Both characters are very well written and develop gradually during the book. YA books are not something I read personally but since Cora Brent is one of my favorite authors I decided to give it a chance. I’m so glad I did because this two teens just became one of Coras power couples.
♥️Fantasy Land  Book Reviewer♥️
*Ku Read
** First time reading author

I LOVED this story. The Pretender is a well-executed story that brings you right into the thick of Ben and Camden's life. Ben is a brilliantly written character who even at his young age he knows what he wants. He just might have to work a little harder to get it. Camden might be his golden star at the end of a trial of errors.

I enjoyed The Pretender and will read more of Cora Brent in the future.

As with all of the stories in the Black Mountain Academy serie
Kerry Fletcher
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Sighhhhh.... i loved it. I kinda feel like leaving it there because it sums it up! I'm sat here writing this review seconds after finishing and i'm smiling big, feeling soppy, happy and fan-freaking-tastic!

I loved the plot and storyline. Something a little darker than usual from Cora and it was genius!

Loved Cam. I loved that she was unapologetically herself. No matter what happened she refused to bend and be like everyone else. As long as she had her family nothing else mattered. She was shy but
Lyndsey Miller
Dec 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5/5
Steam:🔥🔥 2/3

I was really excited to read this book, Cora is known for her Gentry family books but this one was part of a series of standalones put together by multiple authors. High schoolers aren’t my favorite but these two were mature enough to give off new adult vibes. Camden and Ben are two students from a poor town attending the elite academy the next town over and they are far from friends.


Camden is preci
Cora Brent
Dec 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)


They all know me as Ben Beltran, a poor kid from a working class town who lucked into a baseball scholarship at elite Black Mountain Academy.
That’s mostly a lie.
There’s a lot at stake and I have no patience for some uptight snot who sticks her nose in where it doesn’t belong.
Camden Galway is another scholarship case from my crappy neighborhood and she’s just begging to be taught a lesson.
She’ll find out the hard way that she has no idea wh
Stacy R
Dec 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Pretender by Cora Brent is the story of Camden and Ben and part of the Black Mountain Academy series.

Camden lives in the poor town of Devil Valley.  Cam attends BMA on an academic scholarship and is the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper.  Ben lives in the same town and is attending BMA on a baseball scholarship.  Despite riding the same bus 20 miles to school each day, Ben and Cam avoid each other until they both end up with the same after school job and realize they have more in commo
Dec 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Pretender by Cora Brent is about two high school students who attend a prep school. Ben and Camden both attend Black Mountain Academy on scholarship. They live in the same working class town and have to take the same bus to school everyday, but they are not friends. Ben is a baseball player with a bad reputation who works at the convenience store in order to help his mother pay the bills. Camden Galway works hard to keep up her grades and maintain her job at the school newspaper. However, fa ...more
Dec 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Pretender (Black Mountain Academy ) by Cora Brent was a feel good story to me. Ben was a strong character, I loved his personality and his drive to to overcome the situation he found himself in. Camden stood out because she didn't seem to be afraid to be herself. Before admitting they have feelings for each other, the two didn't start out on the best note. I loved Ben's introspective in the first chapter. There were some pretty funny moments in there. And Camden's perception of Ben wasn't th ...more
Sabrina Thompson
Dec 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs
This is a brand new standalone set in the "Black Mountain Academy" series and does not need to be read in order.

Brent delivers an enemy-to-friends-to-lovers book that is steamy and captivating. I flew through this book, I was that engrossed. The writing is fast-paced and the story flows easily and quickly.

The story follows Ben a semi-popular but a slight outcast that is the epitome of mysterious. Camden is a bookish type, who is more concerned with grades than her social life. While, there is
Dec 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Sweet yet mysterious!!

If you are looking for a story that contains mystery, drama, falling in love and living happily ever after, then I highly recommend The Pretender. Cora Brent brings us a story that has all this and more. Ben has a troubled past and his life is nothing but a lie. Cam comes from a wonderful hard working family that has fallen on troubled times. Even though these two attend BMA and ride the bus to school together every day, the don't really get to know each other until Cam get
Jennifer Rappaport
Dec 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Cora Brent is a 1 click author for me. If she is writing it, I'm reading it. Camden and Ben's story was no different. While I am not familiar with the Black Mountain Academy world, I didn't feel lost diving into the book. Cora has the uncanny ability to write people from the "wrong side of the tracks" that you can't help but love, like her Gentry Boys. Camden was the quiet girl who always had her nose in her notebook and Ben was the brooding baseball player who was hiding a secret.

Seeing Ben op
Dec 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
The story is about Ben and Camden both high school seniors living in the working-class part of town with scholarships to attend the prestigious Black Mountain Academy. Coming from the same part of town, riding the bus every morning you would think they would be friends. There is a need to despise one another based on rumors and assumptions. While struggling to handle the undercurrent attraction. They both are having difficult struggles family-wise and are both struggling to help their family. In ...more
Dec 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I love projects where several authors write in one "world". Normally I'm not a fan of books about high school romance, but I really liked this story. It makes me want to read all the others in the Black Mountain series.

One of the things I like the most about Cora Brent books is that she makes you care about the characters. I found myself wondering what Ben was hiding from and would Camden blow it all up with her investigating...I worried about their relationship as a result.

Whenever I finish o
Michele A.
Jan 22, 2021 rated it really liked it
Ben and Camden appear to loathe each other, but people close to them think there is more beneath the surface. They are correct. As soon as Ben realizes how he feels about Cam, he goes about trying to get her on the same page. Ben and his mom are in hiding and he has a lot to be leery of when it comes to having his past exposed. Camden was kind of a brat about trying to figure him out. I realize she wanted to be a journalist, but she didn't need to focus on him when he asked her not to. Both of t ...more
Brigid Brown
Dec 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Oh Ben Beltran, how i do love thee!! Ben, a senior, at Black Mountain Academy thanks to a scholarship, had his life tragically flipped upside down when he was 15. In the 4 years since then he doesn’t allow himself get close to someone. Until Camden Galway.

Camden is also a scholarship student at BMA. She's strong, independent and very inquisitive. She knows there is more to Ben than meets the eye.

I loved watching them grow from bickering classmates and coworkers to an all in couple, that had a
Dec 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I will pretty much read (and love) everything this author puts out. The Pretender was no exception. Cam and Ben were everything!! I love a somewhat-YA-with-steam book, and this one did not miss a beat...between the mystery of who Ben really was, to the budding relationship between him and the nosy reporter, to the family drama and typical teenage antics of their peers at the academy (as well as their regular school) was perfection! A slightly different version of the usual high school elite ...more
Dec 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Pretender was a fantastic addition to the Black Mountain Academy series. 
I loved Ben and Camden their story was intense, full of mystery with plenty of drama, steam, witty banter and romance.

Ben Beltran is a really cool guy who intrigued me straight away. Ben is one of the  star baseball players at the academy but his story isn't a straight forward one. 
Camden was a great girl, I loved her inquisitive reporters nature, she did make laugh. 

I loved everything about Ben and Camden's journey. Th
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Ben thinks Camden is uptight, snooty and boring. Camden thinks Ben is a walking STD the way the girls at school talk about him. Though they live in the same neighborhood and take the same bus to school, they’ve never had anything nice to say about one another. When circumstances has Camden landing a job working alongside Ben, they surprisingly end up becoming friends which leads to more. When Ben’s past comes crashing back, his secrets are now exposed putting him and Camden’s lives in danger.

DS Promotions -Lainey
Dec 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Pretender review
There’s nothing better than an enemies to lovers novel and this book didn’t disappoint.

Ben is reserved and holds a secret he’s been carrying for years.
Camden is smart and curious which is sometimes to her detriment.

Bens backstory is a sad one and it is something that he cannot share with anyone
Camden knows there’s more to Ben but he’s a locked vault, and this is a mystery she wants solved.
They fight and drive each other nuts but have that chemistry that brings them back time
Jacey Jeffrey
Dec 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this latest book from this author!!! Ben is doing his best to hide from his past. Things that had transpired will forever haunt him and he will not allow anyone the chance to hurt him again. He wasn't prepared for Camden or the lasting impact that she would have on his heart. Camden is the balm to his battered soul and gives him the peace he didn't realize he needed. They were so good for each other and I loved their story. I was hooked from beginning to end and didn't want to ...more
Cali Gals
Dec 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
This story had me at Cora Brent. She destroys me with her angsty, emotional reads filled with beautifully flawed characters. Plan for more of the same with mysterious Ben and somewhat misunderstood Camden.

Black Mountain Academy is a dark angsty high school filled with a variety of questionable characters. Cam and Ben lead in this book and they have their own unique story to tell. As you travel down this read, you will experience nail biting and hair raising situations that will leave you on the
Dec 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
I thought that this was a good read. This is Camden and Ben's story and is part of the Black Mountain Academy multi-author series but can be enjoyed as a standalone book. While this very entertaining and well written storyline focuses on the main character's and their enemies-to-lovers romance, the book also offers plenty of deep emotions, mystery, suspense, sweetness, heat and drama. I liked these characters a lot. My heart ached for Cam and her family. I also felt for Ben and his situation. Th ...more
Amanda Belford
Dec 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Love Ben and Camden

I loved Camden and Ben's story!
I couldn't wait to hear more about Ben after starting the series and it did not disappoint. Full of secrets, suspense, and drama.
Ben and Camden both being from the same town have to travel to Black Mountian together and they find themselves in a lot of the same classes, but never see eye to eye and tend to avoid eachother whenever possible. A life change makes them forced to be involved with eachother more and it leads to one wild ride to their
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Though I’m well past the age of selecting high school romance books to read, I love Cora Brent and will always give her work a chance. I’m glad I did, because I was sucked into this story immediately. The characters were endearing and the plot was just crazy enough to be exciting yet still believable. I love the idea of a group of authors writing interconnected stories, and I’m very tempted to explore the rest of the Black Mountain Academy world. As always, I’m looking forward to whatever Ms. Br ...more
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was excited for a new book from Cora Brent and I was not disappointed. I’m have been a fan since I first listened to the audiobook of Draw, the first book of the Gentry Boys series. I think this book had a lot of the same elements.

The relationship between Ben and Camden is a romance. Plus there is the mystery of Ben’s history and the suspense of what will happen because of Ben’s past.

I really like the back and forth so I have insight to each character’s motivations. I really enjoyed this book.
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I'm a huge fan of insta-love , grunge era flannel, my vintage Kenmore sewing machine, embroidered dishcloths and absolutely everything that has to do with 1980s pop culture (i.e. leg warmers, scrunchies, big hair, early Madonna, boom boxes, wood paneled walls, stonewash jeans, etc).

If you believe in Happily Ever After and improbable love stories, chances are I'll love you too!!

Email: corabrentwrit

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