Sunday, October 21, 2012

Novel Review: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Genre: YA Contemporary Romance
Rating (Out of 5): ~4.5 (maybe even 5)
Publisher: Penguin (Dutton)
Spoilers?: Minor

Goodreads Synopsis:

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.

Something Specific:
That I Love:

  • Cricket (which I explain, in length, in the review)
  • Cameos! (Anna and St. Clair! Also talked about in review.)
  • Girl character deciding to find herself, grow into herself more, before starting another relationship.


I love this book. It was amazing and Cricket and it was just so good and I want the next one and Cricket. Cricket, you guys. Cricket.
He is the best thing, ever. Just, ever. I love him. I want him. I want my very own Cricket. Please?
Um, so, anyway…
I read Anna and the French Kiss over the summer (and finally posted the review a couple weekends ago), and loved it. Immediately after reading that book and the excerpt for this one, I wanted it. It sounded amazing and Cricket seemed more my type, and I did not want to wait, at all. I even waited longer than I wanted to buy it. But once I got it, I simply could not wait any longer. I kind of wanted to, just to prolong the amazingness that it was sure to be, but that didn’t happen. I read the book in two days without even meaning to, and it was over much faster than I wanted it to be.
I wanted to meet Lola and Cricket and find out why Lola has a problem with the Bell twins and read more about Lola and her two dads. And, trust me, my excitement was for a reason.
Lola and the Boy Next Door is about Lola, a girl who likes to dress as a different person every day, including extravagant outfits and wigs, even making some of it herself. The Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, are part of the family that live next door to her. Calliope is an ice-skater, and Cricket is an inventor. They’ve moved in and out of that house, and Lola has dreaded their return ever since the last time they left. And now they’re back. And Lola has a boyfriend.
This book was just as good as the first. Just as well written, with just as good characters. I don’t think it was particularly better, but I do like the love interest more. St. Clair was awesome, but Cricket is just nothing less than amazing.
The romance in this book was amazing. Lola is with some other guy at the beginning, who at first I didn’t mind, but later turned into quite a jerk. I was happy with how things ended there, though. And where things went after it with Cricket. Even before that, Cricket was amazing. What he does while she’s with Max is really sweet, even though Lola should have backed off a bit, and their relationship before he moved was really nice, even if a bit bittersweet.
Cricket is charming and adorable; he talks fast when he’s nervous, and he’s completely devoted to and in love with Lola, and he feels a little left out, and he’s so smart. He is just… everything I want. Which, yea, creates a bias, but I am completely okay with that. Because I love him.
And Lola at one point, realizes something about Cricket that is so awesome, and then decides to work harder for him, which is awesome. And she also decides that she wants to be fully herself before she can be with him, which is fantastic.
This book took a bit different direction than I thought it would, but it probably just made the book better for me. I was expecting it to be about Lola falling for her friends older brother, and then to have a falling out with her friend, and maybe something to happen with the boy. That is not what happened. Instead, she fell for Cricket rather early, and wasn’t very close with Calliope at all. Her relationship with Cricket was strong, and started everything, and it’s just… You just have to read it to find out, because I don’t want to spoil any more.
Lola has two dads, and while maybe we could have gotten to see more of them, they were awesome. The best dads ever. And Lola has a best friend, Lindsey, who wants to be a detective, and is a great best friend to Lola. And even Calliope, Cricket’s twin sister, is a really interesting character. Some things she does aren’t that cool, but she turns out alright.
Oh, and there are some cameos! I was expecting to see Anna and St. Clair, but I wasn’t expecting them to show up so much. Which was a very nice surprise. They are adorable and sweet and I loved seeing them together, and Lola’s conversations with them. I’m excited to see what cameos there are in the next book.
I just love everything about this book, okay? And I want the next one right now. But, of course, the next one isn’t set to come out for, I think, another year or something. Which is much too long.

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