The Dating Tutor by Melissa Frost

The Dating Tutor by Melissa Frost
Publisher: Evernight Teen
Genre: Contemporary, YA
Length: Short Story (71 pgs)
Age Recommendation: 16+
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Quince

Ellie is hardly the most sought after girl at Noble High, so she is completely surprised when the boy most likely to become prom king asks her out. Her short-lived glee quickly turns to panic as she admits to herself that she doesn’t know the first thing about dating.

After a fair amount of wheedling, she convinces her best friend and hockey star, Alec, to tutor her in the ways of love. Only once things start, she finds she knows even less than first suspected. Dating is full of more codes and unspoken rules than she ever imagined.

Even more difficult is the effort not to cross lines with Alec. Every lesson brings her closer and closer to the boy next door whom she’s never had a romantic thought about before in her life. Each caress and playful scenario has Ellie wishing more for her best friend’s affection than the boy he’s teaching her to woo.

I liked the premise of friends turning into a couple and “tutor me to seduce that guy/girl only to fall in love with the tutor” stories and that was what drove me to Melissa Frost‘s The Dating Tutor. I cannot say that this was the best story in this category that I ever read, but all in all I liked it.

Both Alec and Ellie were not aware that they liked each other as more than friends until Ellie asks Alec to help her out with some dating tutoring. At first I did not particularly like the way Alec advises Ellie, and I didn’t like her meek responses and complete insecurity. Luckily that changed during the course of the story and in the end Ellie turns out to be a stronger and more confident girl who gained both respect and love from Alec.

From the summary of the story it was quite obvious that Alec and Ellie would end up together; it was just a question of which path they would take to the realization and declaration of love. I liked the path they took, because that way both Alec and Ellie learned something about themselves and they changed. Their romance is sweet and although I knew they would end up together I was happy when they did. Another good feature of the story is that author did not choose some overcomplicated love triangle with too much drama in it.

Unfortunately there is one thing in this story that bothered me as a mother of girls, and it was this: Alec and Ellie are neighbors and that is how they became best friends. Alec has this habit of sneaking into Ellie’s room through the window. The thing I cannot believe is that none of their parents knew about that or if somebody knew (especially Ellie’s mother) that it did not bother them. It seems to me that the author came up with this whole sneaking in and out of window just for the sake of the story without fully considering the situation. This bit of implausibility, while noticeable, did not keep me from enjoying the rest of their story.

The Dating Tutor was a fun story to read. I liked how the characters developed. I also enjoyed how they fell in love and how they resolved their problems to find their HEA. I noticed that Melissa Frost wrote a sequel to The Dating Tutor, this time from Alec’s POV, and I would like to read it as well. This short story was good and I can recommend it to readers who are looking for sweet romance for young adults.

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