Title: Lola and the Boy Next Door
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Young Adult
Publisher: Dutton (Imprint of Penguin)
Date Published: September 29th, 2011
Budding designer Lola Nolan doesn’t believe in fashion . . . she believes in costume. The more expressive the outfit — more sparkly, more fun, more wild — the better. But even though Lola’s style is outrageous, she’s a devoted daughter and friend with some big plans for the future. And everything is pretty perfect (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the dreaded Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the neighborhood.
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.
After reading Anna and the French Kiss I was seriously ecstatic for this book. I wanted Stephanie Perkins’ story to give me the butterflies and the smiles from ear to ear, and the laugh out loud moments that she gave me with Anna. Lola’s book didn’t quite affect me the way that Anna’s book did, but it was still pretty good!
I think when you get right down to it, the thing that didn’t strike home for me was Lola. While she’s very sweet and I liked her, I couldn’t relate to her like I could with Anna. Me and Anna had quite a lot in common, especially personality-wise. I could totally see hanging out and getting along swimmingly with Anna. But Lola is seriously the opposite of me (and Anna) in almost every way. So even though I liked her, I didn’t really understand her. She’s very outgoing, outspoken, and has a huge personality. I am totally none of those things! lol So, I think for me this brought the whole story down. I need to relate to the main character, and I just couldn’t with Lola.
Then we have Cricket. I really liked Cricket, but I didn’t feel as strongly about him as I did with St. Clair. If we’re talking opposites, he’s pretty much the opposite of St. Clair as well. Not that him being tall and shy is a bad thing. It’s sweet and endearing. But, I just wasn’t getting butterflies for Lola and Cricket. Their chemistry wasn’t intense enough (especially in the beginning of the book).
Now once Lola and Cricket got to talking a bit more later on in the book, their story and chemistry got a bit more interesting. I enjoyed watching them fall for each other all over again. I also really enjoyed Lola’s family overall. Even Norah. They all just seemed very genuine and like good people and I liked them a lot.
So yeah. I know a lot of people have said they liked this book even better than Anna and the French Kiss, but I am not one of those people. While it was still a sweet book and I still very much enjoy Stephanie Perkins’ writing, this one just didn’t do it for me as much. I can’t even believe I didn’t even save a single quote from the book! With Anna I wrote down so many witty comments and conversations that I absolutely adored.
Now that I mention it, I think that’s another thing that was missing. This book didn’t have as much humor, sarcasm, and witty dialog. I missed that. I also did not like how much Lola felt like she had to lie about lots of things. She sort of seemed like a chronic liar at some points.
But anyways, overall I actually did like the book. It was very sweet and romantic, and the awkward yet exciting moments between Cricket and Lola were fun to read. I definitely still can’t wait to read Isla and the Happily Ever After, but I don’t think I’ll be expecting another Anna going into it like I did with this one.
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