Cover Image: Have a Little Faith in Me

Have a Little Faith in Me

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Member Reviews

This laugh-out-loud, inspirational, young adult novel will inspire young women and educate readers on sex and faith and how both coincide.
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i kind of found it difficult to get into this book at first but past the halfway mark it gets a lot better! really enjoyed the ending of this book and how the story wrapped up so beautifully
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I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher via NetGalley. This in no way impacted on my view.

This book was just fantastic. When I read it, I was a bit upset as it was my last day on my cruise, and we were at sea all day on our way back home. With not much to do except wander the ship that I'd been exploring all fortnight, I decided to find a nice comfy chair and sit with my iPad and read this as the North Sea went past the window outside. And, let me tell you, I am so glad I did. This was funny, and heartfelt, and just lifted all of my spirits.

In Have a Little Faith, CeCe is reeling after her boyfriend, Ethan, dumps her. He's now become a born again Christian, reclaiming his virginity, and wants nothing to do with CeCe for enticing him. She doesn't understand how he can do this, but will do anything she can to get him back, including spending her summer at Jesus camp - real name Camp ThreeSixteen -  if that's what it takes. She knows absolutely nothing about Jesus or Christianity, so it'll be difficult, bu best friend Paul, does. He spent most of his summers when he was younger at the same camp, and he agrees to go with her, to try and help her through it all. However, her plans all fall apart when she gets there and it's revealed that Ethan has a girlfriend - one he's always had - with Mandy, a True Believer, who knew nothing about CeCe, and is one of the nicest people. So, CeCe ropes Paul into pretending to be her boyfriend, which is difficult for him when he's always had feelings for her, but it could just be the making of them.

Now, I'm not really religious. When I was younger, I would go to church with my grandpa on a Sunday, but that was honestly more because I loved spending time with him, not because I loved the church. As I've gotten older, studied more history and seen what religion - all religions - has done to the world, it's really turned me against religion, so I didn't know what to expect with this book. CeCe is actively nonreligious, but I loved how this book helped her, and me, if I'm being honest, to see the good parts in believing. A lot of this book was seeing what religion and faith means to different people, and on the most part, the characters in the book were truly good. However, some of the characters, namely Ethan, the Pastor, and other leaders, had twisted their faith into something unrecognisable, and used it against people, not for people. Now, I hated the pastor and Ethan, but everyone else was a character I liked.

Another thing I loved about this book was how sex and body positive it was. CeCe actively argued against the outdated and unfair traditions that were at the camp - such as the boys were allowed to be shirtless, but the girls had to be covered as much as possible, and that no form of sex education could be taught or discussed. CeCe is very much against this, and from her cabin, she, and later the other girls when they become more comfortable, talk about everything that they should be - condoms and other protection, consent, enjoyment, respect, masturbation, periods, oral sex, and everything else besides. This does get CeCe in trouble, but it's worth it to ensure that all the girls understand what they need to, and haven't been let down by what the Pastor believes to be correct.

The romance was so swoony. The chemistry between CeCe and Paul was there from the get go, which made it believable from the beginning that they were in a relationship for everyone at camp. Whenever they were together, I was rooting for them, and wanted it to be real. They were honestly relationship goals, and I am glad that they went through the summer in order to see what was in front of them,

As Hartl's debut, this was amazing, and I'm already planning on pre-ordering her next book as soon as I can. This book is definitely one I wish I had when I was younger, and I'd recommend all teens read it for how confident and real it is.
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This was such a wonderfully empowering read, with important discussions about relationships and consent, accompanied by several laugh out loud moments. Absolutely a title I would recommend to our patrons.
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BOOK REPORT for Have a Little Faith In Me by Sonia Hartl

Cover Story: Kombucha Girl
BFF Charm: Meh
Swoonworthy Scale: 6
Talky Talk: Straight Up (to Heaven)
Bonus Factors: Church Camp, Sex Positivity
Relationship Status: See You Next Summer

Cover Story: Kombucha Girl



Do I like it? Do I hate it? I go back on forth on this cover. At first I liked it! Currently...I think I hate it. As a graphic designer, the white vignette around the corners offends me deeply. The little angel doll is completely unrelated to the story, and it's otherwise unremarkable. Yet, the messaging is clear. I guess this puts me firmly in camp "No. Well!"

The Deal:

CeCe's ex-boyfriend Ethan dumped her after they had sex. He's a Christian, after all, and she was temptress luring him away from the Lord. But it's all good, because CeCe has developed a plan to win him back by attending his church camp over the summer and pretending she has found the Way, the Truth and the Light. The only problem? CeCe doesn't know ANYTHING about the Bible. Luckily, her best friend Paul was raised religious, and when she confesses her plan to win Ethan back, Paul insists on accompanying her to Bible camp to keep her out of trouble. But when CeCe and Paul arrive at Camp Three SixTeen, CeCe meets Ethan's new girlfriend, and she and Paul decide to pretend to date so that Ethan won't think she came to win him back. But as the days pass, CeCe's plans continue to go awry, and she's forced to examine why she wants Ethan back, what Paul really means to her, and how she feels about the girls in her cabin.

BFF Charm: Meh



While I appreciated that CeCe was not afraid to go after what she wanted, and that she had the moxy to stand up for what she believed in, there were many times when she felt really immature, and she never seemed to learn or grow or change as a character. She did eventually become a good friend to the other girls in her cabin, even if she judged them first.

Swoonworthy Scale: 6

The romance in Have a Little Faith in Me had all the makings of my favorite sort of swoon. Best friends-to-lovers AND fake dating? Sign me up! Unfortunately, the execution of CeCe and Paul's coupling left a lot to be desired. I needed to know more about their best friendship, the foundation of their eventual relationship. The reader is told that they've been best friends for a long time, but I never really felt that. Or maybe I felt the friendship, but I didn't feel the slow spark into something more? Best friends-to-lovers is a really hard trope to write successfully because it's a constant balancing act between believably convincing the reader that these two people were purely platonic all this time but then also that they'd suddenly "see" what they hadn't all along. 

Reader, I was unconvinced. Also, there was something that bugged the H E C K out of me but it's kinda spoilery so I'm just going to leave it below and you can choose or not choose to highlight the text and read it.

Once CeCe decided she wanted to have sex with Paul, it was so strangely clinical, like she just wanted to do it because another girl in her bunk had an orgasm and she was jealous. And while clinical sex is not always a bad thing when you're writing for teenagers who need to know the ins and outs (pun!) of getting it on, this was combined with Paul's strange and jarring romance novel dirty talk. When he said, "I'd rather spend the rest of my day and night buried inside you" I had a visceral reaction and made an "AGH" noise out loud. I'm not sure what Hartl's intention was here, nor how I was supposed to feel about it.

Talky Talk: Straight Up (To Heaven)

Have a Little Faith in Me explores feminism, sexuality, and religion through a contemporary YA lens, and while these are all topics that I love to read about in YA books, I found myself a little turned off by the way Hartl confronted them here. This book was billed as Saved! meets To All The Boys I've Loved Before, and while it did have the fake dating trope that TATLIB is famous for, I feel like the comparison to Saved! is a bit of a stretch. Yes, it's about religion, but it lacked the biting humor of Saved! While the premise was strong, I didn't really feel like I connected with the writing the way I hoped to.

Bonus Factor: Church Camp



Anyone who has been to church camp can relate to CeCe's struggles: being forced to wear a dress over her bikini, youth pastors with bad hair, falling asleep in sermons. I did think that the adults in the book were a bit...mean? Maybe my experience with church camp was different from other denominations, but it definitely seemed like there were no adults that CeCe could go to when she was having problems.

Bonus Factor: Sex Positivity



CeCe and her bunkmates begin teaching the other campers about sex, since the camp counselors refuse to acknowledge that sex is a potentially good thing that all teenagers deal with in one way or another. The book also explores consent from a perspective that we don't see explored very often.

Relationship Status: See You Next Summer

Book, we are like two people who attended camp together. Maybe we even stayed in the same cabin. I respect the message you're trying to convey, but we hang in different crowds, and tbh, we probably won't keep in touch during the school year.

Literary Matchmaking:

  

• If Fake Dating is your favorite trope, then I'm going to assume you've read the Holy Grail of fake dating books, To All The Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han.

• In Robin Talley's Our Own Private Universe, a bisexual teen meets her dream girl on a church mission trip in Mexico.

• For a thoughtful story about a religious girl who makes the switch from church camp to a secular camp for troubled kids, check out The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord.

FTC Full Disclosure: I did not receive money or Girl Scout cookies of any kind (not even the lame cranberry ones) for writing this review. Have A Little Faith In Me is available now.
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What a pleasantly surprising rom-com with a feminist, sex-positive twist!

Have a Little Faith in Me is a blast from cover to cover. When CeCe follows her ex-boyfriend to a religious summer camp in a misguided attempt to win him back, she quickly finds herself in over her head in an environment that seems quick to paint her as a sinner. But with the help of her best friend and some surprising allies at the camp itself, she learns some important lessons about love, about consent, and about her own self-worth.

Hartl’s debut novel tackles heavy issues through the lens of a teenage girl who’s quick to cover her own vulnerability with acerbic humor. CeCe’s sassy personality took me aback in the first several pages, but once you buckle up to enjoy the ride, you learn that there’s so much more to her than the façade she puts on for everyone outside her inner circle. It’s really a joy to see her peel back the layers as summer at “Jesus camp” turns out to be more trying than she had expected.

The characters really steal the show here, and one of my favorite relationships in the story is CeCe and Paul’s. They play off one another wonderfully. I’m a sucker for a good fake dating trope, and this one’s filled with plenty of cliche yet heartwarming moments. But beyond their chemistry is the wonderful contrast of their healthy relationship, rooted in years of trust and friendship, against the toxicity of CeCe’s relationship with Ethan. Paul is everything a best friend should be, patiently and stubbornly helping CeCe open her eyes to the truths that she doesn’t want to see.

I also absolutely loved the scenes with CeCe and her cabinmates. With internalized stereotypes on both sides of the table, there are certainly hurdles to overcome, but the gang hits it off immediately. The candid vulnerabilities and fierce loyalties shared in Cabin 8 and eventually spread throughout all of the girls at camp had me rooting for them every step of the way.

Admittedly, the motivation behind the plot is a little out there, and I had a couple of misgivings with the pacing of the ending, but that didn’t keep me from thoroughly enjoying Have a Little Faith in Me. All in all, it was a breeze to read, and I highly recommend it. I absolutely applaud this important and often overlooked take on consent, and I’m so glad to see more and more of these unapologetically feminist and sex-positive young adult novels hitting the shelves.  Thank you, Sonia Hartl, for adding CeCe’s unforgettable voice to the movement.
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The YA world needs Sonia Hartl's words! This charming novel promotes sex positivity and introspection in all the right ways. Hartl's main character, CeCe, wrestles with slut shaming and victim blaming in a place where she's least comfortable, Jesus camp. A poignant and necessary story every teen (and their parents) should read!
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I really loved this one.  It was so positive and really dealt with tough issues gracefully.  I loved how every character had realistic flaws but it was clear they all had strengths too and could work together.
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This book took me back in time to youth group days in the Evangelical South. It's a new premise for a YA book, and I found it to be a thought-provoking exploration of religion, sex, faith, and consent.
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"You smell like birthday cake and bad decisions." 

This book deserves all the stars! Sonia Hartl is a debut queen and I will literally read anything she writes from here on out because this book was perfect for my YA Contemporary loving heart. This book is extremely quotable and highly relatable and I just love it so much. I had the opportunity to read this book for a blog tour for the Fantastic Flying Book Club and I seriously cannot thank them enough for allowing me to be a part of the tour because this is one of my favorite reads of the year, and one of my favorite YA Contemporaries I've ever read.  It's such an adorable and heartfelt story, and although I am only twenty-one years old, I do wish that this book would have been available to me as a teenager because it touches on some really important topics, while still being comedic and light hearted. I'm so glad it is something that exists for teenage girls now, and I hope it finds its way to many of them and leaves an impact on them. 

This is the story of CeCe, who's born-again ex boyfriend dumps her after they have sex. In order to win him back, she decides to follow him to Jesus camp. Only problem is that she knows absolutely nothing about Jesus, but that's okay because her best friend Paul does. He decides he's going to accompany her on this crazy trip to make sure she doesn't make a fool of herself. Her plan backfires when she shows up to camp and sees her ex, Ethan, with a new girlfriend. In order to save face, CeCe does the only thing she can do. She ropes Paul into a fake relationship (one of my favorite tropes!!). Throughout the story, she starts to wonder whether Ethan is really the nice guy she thought he was, as well as what all these new feelings for Paul mean. 

This is a beautiful story that touches on the topic of sex, relationships and consent, and religion in a way that is funny while still being sensitive. It's important to mention that you do not need to be religious to enjoy this book, as the story has enough humor and romance to work for everybody. This book has amazing female friendships and CeCe starts off being so hurt and broken but eventually transitions back into her strong and fierce self and I really enjoyed getting to experience this change. Also, Paul is literally the cutest best friend in the entire world and he deserves all the love and affection. I hope that everybody can read this book and that it impacts them as positively as it did for me.

Thank you to NetGalley and Page Street Publishing for providing me the opportunity to read and review an advanced copy of this book!
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Hey friends! I’m part of another blog tour with the Fantastic Flying Book Club! This book was so fun, and I’m so excited to be part of this tour. So buckle up, enjoy the review, and don’t forget to enter the giveaway at the bottom!

TOUR BANNER (3)

In Have a Little Faith in Me, CeCe Wells decides to attend Camp ThreeSixTeen in the hopes of winning back her boyfriend, Ethan. Ethan is a born-again virgin who dumped CeCe days after they had sex for the first time, telling her that she’s a temptation to him and he can’t be with her anymore. So she follows him to bible camp without any knowledge of the bible, relying heavily on her best friend and former devout Christian, Paul. But right from the very beginning, Camp ThreeSixTeen isn’t what CeCe hoped for. Ethan has a new girlfriend! Who… isn’t so new after all. She and Paul pretend that they’re dating to make Ethan jealous! Which… makes CeCe feel things she wasn’t expecting. And she actually likes the girls in her cabin! As she comes to terms with her relationship and breakup with Ethan, she starts to realize that maybe he wasn’t the perfect boyfriend she thought he was all along, and she finds pieces of herself in the process.

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3 Things I Loved
Paul. Everyone needs a ride-or-die friend like Paul in high school. CeCe is super lucky to have him, because she’s kind of an idiot a lot of the time. I don’t blame her at all, and I’ll get into that. But Paul. Oh man, high school dreamboat. He’s nerdy, he’s super respectful of others, especially the girls he dates, and he is there for CeCe no matter what. And he HATED Ethan from the very beginning, which I suspect was for multiple reasons, but he turns out to be right about him being a jackass.
C O N S E N T. Something that is explored heavily in this book is the concept of consent. CeCe thought she understood what it meant, but as she goes forth and grows in this book, she starts to see that she didn’t understand it at all. And that means that she wasn’t giving it freely, like she thought she was. It’s heavy, but it’s important, and it’s framed in a way that works with the rest of the book.
CeCe. She’s last on this list for a reason, but I had to include her. CeCe is annoying a lot of the time. Her logic in going to camp was super flawed. I have no idea what she sees in Ethan in the first place. But what I loved was that she grew. She went forth into this alien environment and found part of herself and became a better person for it. So in the end, she’s not so bad.
Dislikes/Problematic Content
So, I have two disclaimers, for those of you who feel like you might want to read this book. It’s good, and I encourage you to read it, but I want everyone to be safe. So first – there’s some questionable consent in this book that borders on rape or assault. I think it’s important for the plot, and CeCe is telling the story, so we get to watch her grow and realize it. It’s not great, but it was done pretty well. Second, this is a book that takes place at a very conservative Evangelical Christian Bible camp. And there are opinions expressed by some of the side characters in the book that are a bit troubling. Having CeCe as a narrator helps because she has a more liberal, agnostic take on things. But it’s there and it could be triggering for some people.

But what I really want to talk about here is Ethan.

Ethan is the boy you don’t expect to be the subject of questionable consent, truly. He’s a quiet, conservative, nerdy Christian boy with terrible fashion sense. But he’s also the type of boy, to paraphrase a part of the book, who “keeps asking until you say yes.” So are you really giving consent if you’re being worn down? I take a lot of issue with groups of uber-conservative Christians who don’t teach their sons that women are equal to them. I take issue with sex ed not being taught in schools. I take issue with the pockets of America that are left to their own devices and devolve until they become borderline Puritanical. So I didn’t love Ethan. At all. But I’m glad he exists, because people need to see antagonists who seem like nice guys. Not all the bad characters leer after girls as they’re walking by. Some blush and look away. But that doesn’t give you the whole story if you don’t see them behind closed doors. That’s all I’m saying.

Rating
A reminder of the rating scale:

Red = DNF, I hated everything
Orange = Ugh, no thank you
Yellow = I mean, I’ve read worse, but there were problems
Green = This was good! 
Blue = Oh my gosh, I loved this book!
Purple = This is the unicorn of books and I will be rereading it until the binding falls apart and EVERYONE should be reading it!
This book was good! It was important, and it was well-done, and it had the perfect dash of serious mixed in with the humor. I really enjoyed reading it, and the blurb that says it’s Saved (one of my favorite movies of all time) meets To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is pretty spot on. So I’m giving Have a Little Faith in Me a BLUE rating. It’s important, and I hope those who need to read it find what they’re looking for inside it.

Thank you to the publisher (who sent me a hard copy!) and Fantastic Flying Book Club tours for the advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This was a super fun read!

Giveaway
As promised! Here’s where you can win a finished copy of Have a Little Faith in Me! Enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!

Happy reading!
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Several aspects of this story rang true to my own experience growing up as a 'youth group girl' who later stepped away from the church (for various reasons). In this story, CeCe experiences a lot of the shaming that goes on in modern churches regarding women's bodies and sexuality.

I wish I had read this book as a teen, and am so glad that teens today will have the opportunity to do so. I really appreciated the honest and realistic explorations of the church's expectations of women, the ways those expectations are often sexist double-standards, and the guilt/shame that youth group girls tend to feel about their bodies.

HAVE A LITTLE FAITH IN ME also does a great job of talking about consent in a natural, conversational way. The characters learn, on the page, that there's a difference between saying yes and meaning it, between saying yes once and continually saying yes, and that when you say yes under pressure it's not truly a yes.

So many of the scenes brought me straight back to my youth group days, but there were often times that I felt things were taken too far. For example, CeCe tries to wear a bikini to the lake for an afternoon of swimming, but is stopped by a camp leader who tells her "modest is hottest" (totally a thing I used to say. YIKES.) and forced her to cover up in an embarrassing, gross outfit from the lost and found.

CeCe makes a comment about the double-standard that guys are able to go shirtless while girls have to wear modest one-pieces or wear t-shirts over their swimsuits. I enjoyed that she challenged this policy on the page, but didn't like that the church leaders seemed so vicious and intent on punishing CeCe for wanting to wear a bathing suit she felt confident and comfortable in.

This was basically my biggest/only problem with the book, and what kept it from being a 5-star read for me. Throughout the story, it seemed like the pastors/leaders didn't care about any of the kids. They had a very legalistic view of Christianity and represented it in a very poor light. In my experience, church camp is a very welcoming and loving place. Although there are boundaries and rules, they are enforced with explanation and empathy, not with punishment and embarrassment. Nothing about the way church camp was portrayed in this story would make me ever want to attend church, that's for sure.

In addition to the important topics covered in HAVE A LITTLE FAITH IN ME, the characters were extremely well-written and developed, with growth and character arcs that worked really well. The main character, CeCe, was laugh-out-loud funny and had some hilarious one-liners. I found myself actually laughing several times while reading and it added so much to the story. Not enough YA books feature funny characters!

I highly recommend this book to any teen, church-going or not, because of the fantastic explanations about what consent truly means and the candid conversations about the basics of sex. It felt like reading a Judy Blume book for today's generation.
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in my arc august post, i mentioned my excitement for have a little faith in me, since it has some of my all-time favorite tropes – best friends to lovers, fake relationships, childhood friend romance and the clichést cliché – boy who pretends he doesn’t love girl but actually does, and it did not disappoint!

this book reminded me of frat girl by kiley roache, in which the protagonist, cassie, gave a sex ed class to frat boys. in have a little faith in me, the main character, cece, teaches her cabinmates and other female campers about safe sex and how to protect themselves, and i loved seeing girls who are raised and taught to view premarital sex as a sin treat this with open minds.

the author did a good job exploring the topics of sex and feminism. the parts about consent, and how women do not have to be responsible for dressing conservatively just to prevent sexual assault from males, are handled so amazingly well, and i loved it. i also loved how the characters are open about their sexual experiences and are not afraid to share what they know with the less experienced.

other than that, the friendship in this book is the best. cece’s cabinmates clearly know that cece’s not really a christian, but they don’t judge her at all, and even offer to become her friend. they even back cece up when she challenges the camp director’s values and how some people interpret christianity, and it was truly moving seeing them bond and trust in each other. they are the sweetest girls ever, and i love how they forgive each other quickly after a fight, and try to understand each other’s views.

paul and cece’s relationship was also so stinking adorable. they have a tradition of making up and telling stories to cheer each other up, and i was already rooting for them from the very beginning. paul is not perfect – after his dad left him and his mom for another woman, he starts to get himself into casual relationships to protect himself from getting heartbroken again, but i loved him so much because he always makes cece feel safe and loved, and he knows how to respect and properly treat women. must protect paul at all costs.

on top of everything, this book is hilarious. i was literally shaking with laughter when reading it (, earning me some weird stares on the train). cece is so sassy and funny and i love her personality and the way she narrates the story and describes everything. it made cece more three-dimensional as a character, and the story, so much more enjoyable.

this book has its flaws though. growing up catholic, and having attended a catholic primary school and an anglican secondary school, i have made many devoted christian friends, and none of them talk like the characters in the book. they don’t throw bible quotes at each other. they don’t refer to their ex as a “seductress sent to them by satan”. different people have different ways of worshipping, and i’m not saying the author’s depiction of christians is completely wrong, but i simply find it a bit unrealistic. still, i liked how the author showed in her writing that while some christians can be utter assholes, like cece’s ex, ethan, others, like cece’s cabinmates, can be amazing people.

have a little faith in me is a book full of important messages and beautiful relationships, served with a huge heap of laughs. i’m looking forward to reading more of sonia hartl’s books 😀
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Have a Little Faith in Me by Sonia Hartl was a charming read that explored the inner self of teenage girl, CeCe. Hartl created a spunky, yet vulnerable character through CeCe with sharp wit and a vulnerable heart who is coming to terms with entering a new stage in her life. CeCe's adventures with her fellow Cabin 8 girls at Camp ThreeSixteen were hilarious and tender as they touched on key feminist points such as consent. 

 

As a teenager, I would have loved to have had the chance to read a brave book like Have a Little Faith in Me because of all the excellent awareness and topics Hartl covers.
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This was so much fun. The romance kicks in from the very first chapter, and readers will be eagerly awaiting the pair's inevitable union. Meanwhile, the story grows and evolves with the main character, taking us on a journey into how girls and boys are raised to be women and men, and the pitfalls they encounter when their mentors aren't up to the task of proper guidance. There's a strong focus on female friendship and I appreciated the candor with which the author discussed the sexuality within the book, illustrating her point that if we were all a little more honest about bodies and how they work and how they feel when they're trying to work, maybe we'd all like ourselves a little more. Her characters are relatable and they're a blast to spend time with. I look forward to following Hartl's career, as I have no doubt we'll see a lot more from her in years to come.
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Official blurb: "This book reminded me why I fell in love with YA. HAVE A LITTLE FAITH IN ME is both hilarious and poignant, with an unforgettable cast of characters led by fierce but vulnerable CeCe. She asks all the questions about relationships and sexuality I kept locked in my mind as a teen, and her desire for answers broke my heart and then filled it up. An immediate favorite."

One of the best books I've read all year. Sonia's voice is authentic, clever, and utterly captivating. Everything is so respectfully, sensitively done, from discussions about religion to the topic of consent. Nothing is shied away from, and yet nothing feels heavy-handed. This book also has some of the most positive, woman-centered sex scenes I've read in YA, and I ADORE Paul.
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Losing your virginity as a teenager is a dramatic experience whether it turns out good, bad or just plain awkward. Losing your virginity and then being told by your boyfriend that you need to break up so that he can “absolve himself of sin and be Born Again” Is just about the most asshole stunt I can think of and is exactly what happens to CeCe our main character in this gem of a novel.

From this point, CeCe is a woman on a mission. She hatches a plan to win him back by going to the Christian camp that he goes every summer and show him he made a mistake. It took a little (or maybe a lot) of exaggeration on her part to be invited as a Jr. staff member but she figures it will be worth it.

Her best friend Paul even agrees to tag along. He has been to the camp before (though since his parent’s divorce, not in recent years) and figures she needs all the help she can get because shes barely religious and anything but a devout Christian.

The whole plan becomes a whole lot more difficult once they arrive and CeCe is devasted when she finds out he already has a new girlfriend who she has to bunk with! These changes though just seem to make her more determined then ever.

This book was wonderful. I appreciated it that even though Christianity was part of the plot the author of this novel did not try to shove an entire bible down our throats. The romantic parts were very sweet and hardwarming and hit me right in the feels. This novel was also funny with my favorite moment making me laugh out loud. I have 2 words for you. MuuMuu bathing suit. Are you intrigued? Then you should order this book!
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Have a Little Faith In Me follows the story of CeCe, who decides to attend Camp ThreeSixTeen in the hopes of winning back her ex-boyfriend, Ethan, who dumped her days after having sex with her. He wanted to get close to Jesus and CeCe wanted to get closer to him. But she knows nothing about Jesus or the Bible. But her best friend Paul, though warning her this was a bad idea, decides to go with her where ultimately CeCe introduced him as her boyfriend(fake) to make Ethan jealous. But Ethan already had another girlfriend and over the time CeCe realises that her feelings for Paul are more than just for a friend.

This book was a super fun summer novel. It has two of my favourite tropes- fake dating and friends to lovers, and both the tropes have been done so beautifully. I was laughing so hard in a few places. CeCe and Paul’s friendship was awesome. Cece never thought of Paul as anything more until the camp. And this camp changes their relationship forever. Paul was a guy who deserves everything. He was funny and lovely. He was a kind of friend who would go to any length to make his best friend smile. He was certainly a king among men.

I loved CeCe bunkmates- Mandy, Astrid and Sarina. Those were known as the girls of Cabin 8. Cece was initially afraid of living with all Christian girls as she was not sure if she would be able to keep her cover as a fake Christian. But soon their friendship grew stronger and they formed a strong group depicting girl power. All these girls had some talent and were fierce and were trying to find their place within their faith.

I didn’t like CeCe’s character in the beginning. She was a little annoying and took stupid decisions. But as the story progressed, we see an incredible transformation in her character. She realises what she actually wanted to be. She came out as a strong, determined and fierce girl and she was never afraid of putting out her bold opinions, even though she was in a Jesus camp. She learned how to fit in with the people where she was least expected to be.

Apart from being a book about summer romance and finding your place, there is one very much important topic, and that is the concept of CONSENT. This book heavily explores the topic of consent and I am glad it did because this topic is so less talked about in YA and this certainly needs to be improved. This book is framed beautifully around this topic.

I am not a Christian so I don’t know much about all the beliefs and stuff. But I was so glad this book talked about sex education. This book also talks about how your opinions can be different from the others but you need to respect those. It highlighted what needs to be changed in the community but it can’t be done by blaming and shaming others who think differently than you.

I am not sure about this but I think this book can be a little problematic for some, especially Christians?? This book takes place at a very conservative Evangelical Christian Bible camp. There are some opinions expressed by some of the side characters in the book that certain people can find a bit troubling. So read this book with CAUTION if this is something that can trigger you.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend this. This is a fun summer book which you can finish quickly. Besides having a lot of humor and fun, this book is packed with important topics of consent and sex ed. It also talks about finding your beliefs and going down the path which you find suitable for you.
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Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to Netgalley, Fantastic Flying Book Club, and Page Street Kids for this free copy.All quotes in this review are taken from the Advanced Reader Copy and may change in final publication.

Content Warnings:
Underage Sex (discussed, not graphic), Religion,
Sexual Activities, Non-Consenting Sex

Diversity Rep:
None that I can see.

I personally am not one to pick up a book that directly deals with religion – I mean that’s almost why I didn’t read Autoboyography – but when I was picked for this blog tour, I knew I had to give it a chance. It was also a religion that I believe in, so I was curious to see the depiction of Christianity and Catholicism from a character that doesn’t practice it.

I will say that I think the further I got along in this book, the more angry I got at how some religious messages could be twisted to benefit others, and how it seems like girls will always be responsible for the actions of boys. It’s not fair of course, and I think Hartl did a great job at getting me angry for these girls.

The Characters:
CeCe (full name: Francine) is our main character. I would say she’s a typical teenager and nothing really jaw-dropping about her. She does end up stalking her ex-boyfriend by signing up to join a leadership conference for a religious camp though, so that may be something. I don’t know how I feel about her as an MC but she’s not completely terrible, so that works.

“It’s not like you lied about your religion to get a leadership position at a camp you have no interest in to impress a guy you have nothing in common with. Oh, wait.” ~ Paul speaking the TRUTH BOO

Paul is CeCe’s neighbor and best friend. His father – who not surprisingly left his mom for his church secretary *insert eye roll here* – does not practice his religion anymore thanks to that incident. However, he ends up spending his summer with CeCe at Camp Three SixTeen so that she’s not alone and can help her get through all of the religious aspects of the camp. I mean, someone’s going to have to help her get through this, right?

Ethan is the ex-boyfriend. I don’t like him. He reminds me of one of my exes who broke up with me the same damn way. And then of course someone told me that he had a girlfriend through his church, JUST LIKE ETHAN DOES. I don’t like boys like this.

Mandy is one of CeCe’s roommate and a truly nice Christian girl. Oh, and she’s the girl that Ethan has been dating. But, CeCe shouldn’t hold that against her, which she really shouldn’t because it’s not Mandy’s fault, but I guess a girl needs to figure it out for herself. A shame though, since Mandy is a great girl from the get go. She is immediately kind to CeCe and helps her get through camp. I love girls like Mandy.

Sarina and Astrid are the other roommates, and have known Mandy for years. They are all super nice to CeCe too, although I know that they are still trying to feel her out. Sarina is super humble about her accomplishments in the makeup YouTube industry, so what does that tell you about her? I like them. Astrid is a smart cookie, knows her Scriptures better than anyone, and has a good head on her shoulders.

“That’s not an apology,” Astrid said. Now it was my turn to gape. “You basically said CeCe wasn’t evolved enough in the Bible’s teachings to comprehend, which is not only offensive, but your lesson is wrong.” ~ YOU TELL EM ASTRID

The Plot:
CeCe is convinced that if she “finds God” by going to the same religious camp as ex-boyfriend Ethan, then maybe she can win him back. Thank goodness her best friend Paul ends up going with her because (1) he grew up in the faith and his father is a priest so he can help her lie her way through Christian Camp, and (2) because he can keep her grounded from doing something she’s going to regret. Although, not sure if that will work since they end up going there anyway despite his advice. CeCe and Paul arrive at camp to find out that Ethan actually has another girlfriend – that happens to be one of CeCe’s cabin mates and is such a sweetheart honestly – and CeCe ends up lying by saying that her and Paul are actually together.

Did Christian kids even make out? Obviously they did on some level. They could even have sex as much as they wanted, so long as they claimed to be born-again whenever it suited their needs.~ CeCe

The first line irritated me because it’s like people making assumptions about religions – kind of like what happened in Autoboyography but not done the same. Then the snark after it because Ethan totally had sex with CeCe and then claims “I need to find God again and be born-again” to break up with her was complete trash and gives Christianity a bad name.

Just saying.

Drama ensues. But just enough that it’s not annoying and one that you can actually follow along. It was good.

Also, CeCe ends up learning from Paul what consent really means, since Paul is super pissed at Ethan for what happened when she lost her virginity. And I’m proud of Paul for understanding the concept of consent because not everyone does.

“… but consent should be an ongoing conversation. Did he check in with you? Did he make sure you were comfortable, that you were still enjoying things?” ~ Paul asking CeCe about Her Time with Ethan

My man Paul freaking gets it, ladies and gentlemen! This is what I’m talking about right here.

My Likes:
I think this was the first of CeCe’s redeeming lines in my eyes:

The least we can do is be proud of our own accomplishments. Lord knows the world won’t do it for us.~ CeCe on Pride being a stupid Sin

Basically this was where CeCe finds out that Sarina is a freaking Makeup YouTube superstar (fifty thousand followers in six months. That’s amazing), but when she told Sarina that she should be proud of that, Sarina was like “Pride is a sin.” Which it is, don’t get me wrong. I remember the seven sins. But, CeCe has a point. It’s not being boastful or anything.

And there are more cases where CeCe does not agree with what the camp counselors are teaching the girls, because let’s face it, it’s antiquated and not fair towards women at all. Astrid does as well, and I was honestly so proud to see the girls of Cabin 8 stand up for what they knew was right and have a united front on this.

My Dislikes:
CeCe is too obsessed with Ethan and he didn’t even treat her right. And the way that she describes herself without him is just sad.

I didn’t know who I was without him. His friends all called me “Ethan’s girl,” and I wanted so badly to belong somewhere, instead of constantly trying and failing to find my place. ~ CeCe

Chica. Never define yourself by who you’re dating. It’s not worth it.

Dress like you want to be seduced, and you will attract the kind of guy who will only try to seduce you, who won’t value your heart or your mind. ~ Patricia…. the lame ass counselor

Messages like this seriously piss me off. I get this was maybe the point of the novel, but having to read stuff like this over and over again in a short amount of time really irked me.

Like really irked me.

“…in a handful of words, this counselor had made me feel more ashamed of my body than I had when Ethan told me why we had to break up. In her eyes, it wasn’t the sex that made me dirty; it was me. Like my very existence in a female form had to be covered up, hidden away. One of the several reasons I could add to the growing pile of why I’d never be a Christian.” ~ CeCe just had on a bikini, guys. That’s it.

And this is coming from Patricia, one of the FEMALE counselors. How demeaning do women have to be to high school girls and younger to guilt trip them into thinking that it’s their fault when guys have hormonal reactions? The hell is this?

Final Thoughts:
It took me a while to get into this because I was already turned off by CeCe’s behavior in the beginning. I think she did end up growing a little bit as the book went on. I appreciated that she changed her mind on Mandy because in all honesty, girls should not be enemies over a piece of crap guy.

“… for Mandy, this girl I shouldn’t care one iota about. I’d come to steal her boyfriend, for crying out loud. But still. I felt a certain amount of loyalty toward her. The kind of kinship that came from really, truly understanding how someone else felt.”
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Oh, you guys. I love this book. It's smart and funny and I had the goofiest smile the whole time I was reading it.

I am a fan of books about friendship and this has some of the best friendships ever. CeCe was definitely nervous about spending time alone with the girls in her cabin; she was sure they would consider her to be a heathen and probably worse. Instead, they hit it off almost immediately and I loved the way the four of them related to each other. 

I love CeCe most of all. She does so much growing over the course of the book but I love the way that she's always good at being direct about what she wants. It's hard to do a lot of the time, and she's a great example. 

This is just a complete delight and I'm glad I got a chance to read it. Recommended.
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