never been kissed by timothy janovsky book cover

Never Been Kissed by Timothy Janovsky Review

never been kissed by timothy janovsky book cover
Published: 2022
Dear (never-been-quite-over-you) Crush, It's been a few years since we were together, but I can't stop thinking about the time we almost... Wren Roland has never been kissed, but he wants that movie-perfect ending more than anything. Feeling nostalgic on the eve of his birthday, he sends emails to all the boys he (ahem) loved before he came out. Morning brings the inevitable Oh God What Did I Do?, but he brushes that panic aside. Why…

Overall Rating

4 Austens–lovely, funny romance, with a main character learning more about himself. Part coming of age/part romance. For fans of Heartstopper, lovers of movie arcana, John Hughes films, and 90s rom coms

For full description of my review rules click here: Book Recommendation Rules

Trigger Warnings/Content Warnings

None really. One of the protagonist has some issues with his family (not a spoiler alert).


Heat Rating

Low. This is a clean, sweet romance.


More Review

From the first scene, this book hooked me. No spoilers, but the first chapter really does perfectly set up the rest of the book. The main character Wren is at a drag show on his birthday with his best friends. If you read nothing else (though you really should read the whole thing), just read and love the first chapter. It’s funny, smart, full of wonderful characters.

I also really liked the discussion of demisexuality, and the main character’s efforts to understand himself better. The slow burn in this book really hits all of those notes that the film Never Been Kissed  (starring the incomparable Drew Barrymore and Michael Vartan) evokes as well.

And then there’s the drive-in. I loved the drive-in scenes, and all of Wren’s friends and family.

The reason I give it four stars is that there is a subplot involving Mateo that didn’t quite hold my attention the way the rest of the book did.

Again, no spoilers, but I wanted far more about Alice as well.

Overall, wonderful character, funny, smart, sweet. Life is terrible lately, so we all need more books like this one in our lives.

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