‘ON THE FENCE’: Tomboy Finds Love With Best Friend and Boy Next Door


‘ON THE FENCE’: Tomboy Finds Love With Best Friend and Boy Next Door. Review of the 2014 novel by Kasie West. Text © Rissi JC

STORY: Charlotte “Charlie” Reynolds may be independent, but she’s never given her father cause to question her. But when she’s issued a speeding ticket, her father doesn’t take it lightly. This means her father insists she get a job to pay off her ticket. Unfortunately for Charlie, this means working in a pink infused boutique. 

For the girl who can outrun and outplay any boy she comes up against, this is something of a challenge. As the youngest of four siblings (all of whom are older brothers) and the daughter of a single parent father, Charlie is a tomboy with a penchant for being “one of the guys,” which includes the boy next door who’s been more of a fourth brother.

Everything changes when Charlie begins spending her nights talking with Braden at the fence line separating their properties…

On the Fence, by Kasie West | Book Review

Of the two novels by West I’ve read (so far – the rest are on my immediate TBR), this is my least favorite. With that opening statement out of the way, let me say, On the Fence is still a delightful story from its opening pages to ending HEA. For months, blogging and reader friends have been urging me to crack open the pages of these novels. The reader in me “knew” these would be books I’d thoroughly enjoy, but for reasons that shouldn’t have stopped me, I didn’t make the time to read them.*shame on me*

It took no time at all for me to realize these characters, Kasie’s writing style, and the overall concept was precisely the type of story that makes my reader heart happy. *insert heart eye emoji* On the Fence is a sweet little story about girl who’s the very definition of a “tomboy.” Growing up in a household of boys and raised by a father is bound to do that to one. 

BOOK REVIEW | ‘Geek Girl’: A Story for the Nerdy Girl in All of Us in the Style of ‘Princess Diaries’

Sometimes we expect more that people are capable of giving at the moment” – Kasie West

‘ON THE FENCE’: Tomboy Finds Love With Best Friend and Boy Next Door #YALit #KasieWest #bookarchives Click To Tweet

What I find so interesting about this are the ways Charlie begins to expand her horizons, realizing that just because she fit into (and felt most comfortable) in one world didn’t mean the opposite was worth nothing. She began to want some variation in her life. She found the life of being a “girl” wasn’t really so bad. This is something I liked and enjoyed about On the Fence. Her shifting personality is a natural progression.

The other pro of the story are the characters. All of them (yes, all!) play an important role in the story, and I don’t think I remember anyone who felt “unnecessary.” Another pro is that no character is unreasonable or there for mere “drama.” I felt like all of the characters were likable, and some of whom even need their own story. Of course, as is the hallmark of Kasie’s signature style, the romance is swoony sweet. (Both Braden and Charlie have scars in need of healing.) Everything ends how you “know” it will from the first page, and it’s all perfectly, simplistically perfect.

Those who love simple (used as the greatest compliment) romances with characters that support rather than hinder the story will enjoy this. It’s an easy read for those of us looking for something to read on these dreary final winter days. The joy of the story isn’t about overthinking or trying to find something sinister around the next corner. The joy is in the sweet journey these characters experience. Perhaps it’s not a life-changing one, but it does challenge the characters as they are, and sometimes that’s the best kind of result.


Author: Kasie West
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Bought
Publication Date: 2014
Find the Review elsewhere: Goodreads
Add the Book: Goodreads
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary YA, Romance
Rating: ★★★1/2

Content: there may be a few minor suggestive remarks/innuendo, but On the Fence is a clean PG13 or PG rated story. 

Review text is © Rissi JC and first appeared on Finding Wonderland (Dreaming Under the Same Moon), RissiWrites.com 

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.


  1. Great review. I read the fill in boyfriend by Kasie West this month and really enjoyed it but it wasn't amazing. I'm looking forward to reading some of her other books because I've heard better things about them. I'll have to add this on to my TBR!

    1. Good to know re: 'Boyfriend', Kristy. I like 'Distance' best as between this and it. That said, I still thoroughly enjoyed this one and am looking forward to reading more by Kasie. What are you planning to read next from her?

      Thanks so much for visiting!

    1. I would second (or third or fourth) those thoughts Teresa. I really enjoyed this novel despite it not being my favorite of the two I've read. This is still a wonderful and charming read. I sure hope you enjoy Kasie's books if and when you read them.

      Thank you so much for visiting Finding Wonderland. :)

    1. Good to know, Brittaney! I'm so glad you enjoy them. Do you have a favorite? I have to decide between Fill-In Boyfriend or her newest, By Your Side. :)

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