Thursday, December 13, 2012

Review: My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

Publisher: Dial Books for Young Readers
Publishing Date: June 14th, 2012
Genre: YA Contemporary
Pages: 396 pgs
ISBN: 9780803736993
Source: borrowed from library

Summary from Goodreads: 

A gorgeous debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another

“One thing my mother never knew, and would disapprove of most of all, was that I watched the Garretts. All the time.”

The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, numerous, messy, affectionate. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen-year-old Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love, Jase's family makes Samantha one of their own. Then in an instant, the bottom drops out of her world and she is suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

A dreamy summer read, full of characters who stay with you long after the story is over.

My Review: 

I have heard nothing but good things about this book and I was in need of a little contemporary.  I have to admit that YA contemporary can go one of two ways for me: either I love it or I find it super cheesy.  I am happy to say that I quite enjoyed this book.  I come from a large family so I could relate to Jase in this book.  I am the eldest of 6 kids and things at our house were never calm.  In fact things were downright chaotic and our yard was never tended perfectly.  There were definitely toys all around the corner lot that I grew up on.  In fact, I can remember on more than one occasion having people come to our house and asking if we were having a yard sale when we were just cleaning out the shed.  I loved all the chaos of Jase’s house in this novel and I also loved the relationship between Samantha and Jase.  Things between them start off slow and continue gradually; there is no insta-love in this story.  I found all the characters to be well-rounded. Not a one of them was unrealistically perfect and they all had their own flaws.  Similarly, no one was essentially all bad either.  Each character was perfectly balanced, even the minor characters.  I ended up reading this novel quite quickly and I was sad to see it go back to the library.  I may have to purchase this one for my personal library after this move is done.  I also love the fact that this book is a stand alone.  It was refreshing to read a book and have it all tied up at the end.  I will definitely be reading more from this author!

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