Wednesday, 13 August 2014


Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Lola Nolan is a budding costume designer, and for her, the more outrageous, sparkly, and fun the outfit, the better. And everything is pretty perfect in her life (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the negihborhood. When Cricket, a gifted inventor, steps out from his twin sister's shadow and back into Lola's life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.

I'm not a big reader of contemporary romance and I've basically read nothing but fantasy for the last couple of months (it's been distracting me from writing my manuscript, so I'm switching to contemporary until I can get my hands on SJ Maas's Heir of Fire), but I saw a lot of people getting excited about the third book in this series and thought it was about time I checked out the second instalment, since I surprised myself by enjoying the first (though looking back at my review of it suggests I'm remembering it differently to how I felt at the time!)

The weird thing is, I see other readers gushing over St. Clair and Cricket all the time, but I don't really have much interest in either of them. I prefer Cricket to St. Clair, but neither of them really does anything for me. I do, however, like the female characters in the books. Both of them are smart and no-nonsense, but at the same time flawed and vulnerable. They're human. Completely relatable, even if I never thought I'd have a single thing in common with someone who could be described as "outrageous, sparkly and fun," as I am none of those things. And I totally kept picturing Lola as a young Garcia (from Criminal Minds, who I love anyway).

I'm running out of things to say, mostly because I quite liked this book. I didn't love it, I didn't hate it. And as Anna says to Lola on page 62:

"It's easy to talk about things we hate, 
but sometimes it's hard to explain exactly why we like something."

From which I can only assume that Stephanie Perkins is inside my head. I've been saying this, or some variation of it, for years now. I rarely know what it is I like about a book - or a movie or a TV show or a real live person - but I can reel off its flaws without a second thought. Whatever the reason I don't have anything much to say about this book, I have to admit I'm kind of looking forward to the third one, Isla and the Happily Ever After.

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