Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Review: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Title: Lola and the Boy Next Door
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Hardcover: 338 Pages
Release Date: September 29, 2011
Publisher: Dutton Books
Author Info: Website | Twitter
Buy the Book: Amazon | IndieBound
Add it: GoodReads | Shelfari
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.
So I read Anna and the French Kiss like every other good YA-er out there. And I liked it! I’ve spent time in Paris and love film - so I identified with Anna. However, St. Clair frustrated me a bit, but whatever. I liked it.

I liked it enough to make sure I got Lola. If I heard a thousand good things about Anna, I heard a MILLION good things about Lola. So I saved it. I saved it for when I needed something really, really good. I decided to read this as my official 125th book of 2011. Seemed like a good one for a number than monumental, right? I even PLANNED to sleep and spread it over two days. *cough* Yeah, RIGHT. I should know not to trust myself with that. I DEVOURED it and finished it at 4 am, causing a lot of pain when the alarm went off obnoxiously under 4 hours later. Ouch.

So what exactly caused this pain? Cricket Graham Bell. Or, as like I to call him CRICKET *EXPLETIVE* BELL.
Okay, now we need to talk about Cricket.
It was about 40 pages in when it became so heartbreakingly clear how in love Cricket was with Lola and she was so blind to it. This does not bode well for female readers. This means a lot of “OMG. CRICKET. MY HEART.” Or, more likely a nonsensical reaction like this: WORIGHSLIJVSOIHJSLIBOFIHBSODGVLERUBHQLFUBHSDLIFUDEATH. Guys, I read this book DAYS ago and Cricket is still rummaging around my head. Certainly, this has happened before but it is rare. What is it about that tall, skinny boy that is just so OMGPERFECT?!

And now, Lola. I’m kinda girl-crushing on her. If I was a teenager and read this book (and had more self-confidence), I can promise you I’d be head over heels obsessed and might go as far as to try and start sewing again. (That usually ends in disaster.) But there is something about Lola that I just completely identified with and adored her. Usually with female leads, I like them, but they will always do SOMETHING that makes me smack my forehead in frustration. But not Lola.

Not to say that either Lola or Cricket were perfect, instead they were more like perfectly misguided. Something that screams good intentions, but just a bit off. Completely teenage. But watching them stumble around was kind of the best, cutest (sometimes a little sad) thing ever.

Oh. OH. AND there were several (many) Anna and St. Clair appearances. Like I said, I liked Anna, but I LOVED seeing them in this and being all INSANELY CUTE. I love cameos of the original characters in “companion” books and this wasn’t a little, they were in there quite a bit! It made my heart happy.

And now my public plea to Ms. Perkins:
Dear Stephanie, you are super cute with your adorable smile and bright, ever-changing hair. But I regret to inform you that we need Isla and the Happily Ever After, like, yesterday. Sincerely, your entire fan base spoken through me.


  1. This review blows... it all out of the water! Loved it, so cute!!! ; )

  2. Great review as always! While I loved the Anna book more, but I still loved this one and Cricket of course. Gotta love him!

  3. Okay, I really need to read both of these books like, right now. Loved your review!

  4. This review made me laugh. I'm with you on preferring Cricket to St. Clair. But a lot of people feel the opposite! Love her books so much :)

  5. Uh.... buh... guh...

    *clutches skull*
    So I saved it. I saved it for when I needed something really, really good.
    OK, I DID love Anna, and I heard such AMAZING things about Lola that I've been saving it for months until a time I needed an AMAZING book. Like you said: something really, really good. 

    Ummm, so I'm actually reading it RIGHT NOT. I mean, not RIGHT right now... right now I'm typing a silly comment, and oh my goodness, I'm turning into Cricket. SHUT UP NOW SARAH. The "OMG. CRICKET. MY HEART." I made a Goodreads status update almost identical to this about an hour ago XD

    OK. Seriously FABULOUS review.
    And I'm adding my name to your STEPHANIE PERKINS! ISLA! NOW! list XD

  6. Also, I just looked at your banner closely, and DIED! "It does not do well to dwell on dreams, and forget to live."

    Dumbledore is my personal hero.

  7. I'm so happy you noticed that!! Most people don't even realize it's there! :)

  8. The first time I read this book, my reaction was "meh" but I recently read it and thought it was much better. I really love how innately good Cricket was, he was just so sweet. You're right about them being "teenaged" because that's actually a reason a friend of mine liked Lola so much! She was perfectly teenage, kind of bratty but overall with good intentions. Lovely review!