Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Release Date: September 29, 2011
Format: Advanced Reader Copy
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance
Buy: Amazon | IndieBound
Stephanie Perkins has officially made it onto my “automatic pre-order author list” (so far, a list of one). I waited to post this review in order to tame down my gushiness but I don’t think it’s possible. I absolutely loved – LOVED – this book! It actually gave me stomach butterflies while reading it, no joke.
Lola and the Boy Next Door is a companion novel to Anna and the French Kiss (my review here), and it was fan-freaking-tastic to be with the characters Anna and St. Claire again. They show up quite often in Lola, and it’s a definite treat for fans. Prior to reading this, I had heard some people say that they thought Lola was even better than Anna… but I just didn’t think it could be possible. I’m still not sure I’d say it’s better, but it is definitely just as good fantastic!
I think my favorite thing about Perkins’ writing is her characterization; her characters are all so realistically flawed. I loved the tall geekiness of Cricket, and the spunkiness of Lola and her obsession with costumes. I also loved how honestly Perkins depicted teenage life and alternate lifestyles (Lola has two dads for parents)… it is so refreshing to see this realism in YA. Most of all, I loved all the little moments between Lola and Cricket. I didn’t think anyone could unseat Etienne St. Clair from his pedestal, but Cricket did… or at least forced him to share it!
If you can’t tell from my review, I HIGHLY recommend these books! In my opinion, they are the best of YA contemporary. I can’t wait for my pre-ordered finished copy of Lola to arrive (releases 9/29/11) so I can read it again, and I’m already pining for the next companion novel, Isla and the Happily Ever After! Seriously, I would read anything Stephanie Perkins writes.