Monday, September 9, 2013

Book Review 18: My Life Next Door

"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, messy, affectionate. And every day from her rooftop perch, Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs up next to her and changes everything.

As the two fall fiercely for each other, stumbling through the awkwardness and awesomeness of first love, Jase's family embraces Samantha - even as she keeps him a secret from her own. Then something unthinkable happens, and the bottom drops out of Samantha's world. She's suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

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

* The Break Down:

As we all sadly know summer is coming to an end, And with that the new school year, also means making more more time  for my insane AP classes and less time with my long term, highly dedicated relationship with books *pause to dramatically sigh.

So whats the best way to let summer go out with a bang? 

Read a ridiculously cute and romantic summer novel obviously.

When I first saw the gorgeous cover for My Life Next Door I was expecting a light and sweet summer book. While it did feature a beautiful romance, it was also a pretty deep story about family and acceptance which I was not expecting but it worked perfectly with the story.

The writing was so amazing, and I loved the humor and the dialogue. This book had so many things going on, and I couldn’t believe the twists and turns that happened. And that ending! It broke my heart! I think Fitzpatrick did a really great job of developing the romance, which I sometimes find lacking in contemporary books. But I loved how the romance grew and was so sweet, and the writing just topped off the amazing story perfectly.

Everyone thinks Samantha Reed has it all. A perfect family, a perfect mom (who is also the state senator), a perfect house and a perfect life. But nobody knows that Samantha wishes her family could be like her neighbors, the Garretts. 

Let’s spend a while talking about these crazy Garretts, shall we? This pretty much describes a normal day at the Garrett house:

We walk into the living room to find Alice and her Brad sprawled on the brown sectional couch, Brad rubbing Alice’s feet. George is fast asleep, naked, facedown, on the floor. Patsy is wandering around in a purple terry cloth footie pajamas, plaintively saying “Boob.”

Yep, That’s them. ALL OF THEM. Loud, rioty, yet ridiculously loving and supportive. They were the perfect family dispite their size or their financial status, It was so easy to see why Sam spent most of her nights watching them.

Now on the the relationship between Samantha and Jase. It was one of the most realistic ones I have seen in a YA book. From the start as he climes onto her roof unannounced and tries to save her:

“Why would I need rescuing? This is my house, my roof?”

“I don’t know. it just hit me, seeing you there, that you might be Rapunzel. The princess in the tower thing. All the long blond hair and…well…”

“And you’d be?” I know I'm going to laugh if he says “the prince.”
Instead he answers "Jase Garrett.”

They start off as friends and actually get to know each other first before they start dating. It’s not one of those typical insta-love stories and they have to deal with some pretty serious issues such as dealing with their families and making the right choices. Seeing their love grow and blossom into something real and beautiful was such a nice thing to be able to witness.

While I loved Samantha and Jase and every single member of the Garrett clan, my favorite character was Tim, Samantha’s best friend’s brother. He starts off as a trouble maker and a stoner and a really big loser but the more time he spends with Jase and the Garretts, the more you can see how much he changes throughout the book and how hard he tries to turn his life around and although I hated him at first, he ended up as my favorite character-hands down! 

Over all My Life Next Door was so much more than a fluffy contemporary. This book is dark, sad, emotional, uplifting, romantic, and amazing. If your a reader looking for a innocent first love, I 100% recommend you check this book out! Even if it isn't summer time.


  1. I've had my eyes on this one for a while..I just might pick it up sooner than next summer now that I've read your review !

  2. This does look like a good end of summer read (And good luck with your AP classes). This has been a book tha I've been meaning to pick up for a while now -- but just haven't yet. I think I need to add it to bump it up on my TBR. It all seems great -- but talking bout the stoner friend that chaneges really won me over.

    Thanks for sharing!

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