Contemporary Realistic Fiction · Review · Young Adult

Faking Faith by Josie Bloss

Faking Faith by Josie BlossSynopsis from Goodreads:

Dylan Mahoney is living one big unholy lie.

Thanks to a humiliating and painfully public sexting incident, Dylan has become the social pariah at her suburban Chicago high school. She’s ignored by everyone–when she’s not being taunted–and estranged from her two best friends. So when Dylan discovers the blogs of homeschooled fundamentalist Christian girls, she’s immediately drawn into their fascinating world of hope chests, chaperoned courtships, and wifely submission.

Blogging as Faith, her devout and wholesome alter ego, Dylan befriends Abigail, the online group’s queen bee. After staying with Abigail and her family for a few days, Dylan begins to grow closer to Abigail (and her intriguingly complicated older brother). Soon, Dylan is forced to choose: keep living a lie . . . or come clean and face the consequences.

Review:

Dylan Mahoney, a humiliated girl who became a social pariah, becomes obsessed with the blogs of fundamentalist Christian girls to the point that she creates the persona of Faith, a good fundamentalist Christian girl. As Faith, she befriends Abigail, the second oldest daughter of a fundamentalist Christian preacher. Abigail’s blog showcases her life and dedication to God for the world to see. It takes only a couple of e-mails for the girls to become fast friends. One day, Dylan gets the “bright” idea to visit Abigail’s family for two weeks. Having no experience in anything she claimed to have as Faith, having experience dating and having little knowledge or belief in Christianity, what could possibly go wrong? Josie Bloss’ Faking Faith demonstrates a girl’s coping with the bullying and outsider status through blogging – an activity rampant with lying and attempting to build real relationships.

The story is well written. I liked the back story of her break-up with Blake – explained in a couple chapters before getting to the meet of the story. The development of her fascination is as well explained as it can be from first-person POV. I like Bloss’ comparison and contrast of faith in a higher and lack of belief in a higher power. It shows that two different girls can get through life’s challenges with different belief systems. It’s a nice diversity lesson.

Faking Faith surprised me in mainly the ending. I didn’t expect it to go as well as it did. I figured she would either get away with the lie or the family would figure it out and she would pay big consequences. It went pretty smoothly for her with Abigail, Abigail’s brother and the Mahoney family.

This contemporary novel does have romance, but it’s not much. It doesn’t take over the plot. It’s purpose is more for Dylan’s healing and observation of Mr. Dean than it is about pure romance.

The e-book edition is great. No grammatical nor formatting errors that I can see. Page numbers are given. I tried setting it to the publisher’s font; it kept reverting to Georgia. Maybe that is the publisher’s font, but I would have expected a font more like Arial. The font did not take away from the book – it probably helped speed the reading along. It’s something that bothered me. I do know how to change the fonts, but I like to see what the publisher picked if I can.

This is a light, fast read with insight into being an outsider and learning about another culture. I recommend this to lovers of the contemporary genre and those who would like to see a book with a faith in it without it being exactly Christian fiction.

Genres: Contemporary YA, Romance

Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars

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