Genres: Adolescence, Contemporary, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Fiction, Friendship, Love & Romance, Realistic Fiction, Romance, Young Adult
Series: My Life Next Door #1
Published by Penguin, Speak on June 14th 2012
Amazon, Barnes & Noble , The Book Depository
"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.
After I read a book like this, I question myself for taking so damn much on deciding on reading them in the first place! From the very first page I was hooked on this book. We start by knowing that Samantha’s mom doesn’t approve of the new neighbors, and we’re given these ridiculous excuses that are supposed to be insulting, but they actually intrigue us more like how it happens to Samantha. We meet the loud and all-around-amazing family next door and instantly wish we were Samantha because THEY ARE UNBELIEVABLY INCREDIBLE and they’d be so much better than my current neighbors.
I loved the interaction between Sam and Jase. From the very moment Jase appears, my heart wouldn’t stop beating fast and sighing at whatever big or small thing he did. From that first little interaction, the two embark on a friendship like nothing Samantha’s ever experienced before as she meets the rest of the Garrett’s, the family she’s pent years looking at from her room. I loved how funny, smart, caring, thoughtful, and all-around amazing Jase looked, but still really down-to-earth. I was smitten with him…
Another character I loved was Samantha. She was the perfect daughter and did everything her mom did until one day she didn’t. I understand that breaking your parents’ rules are a big no-no, but in this case they’re okay because fuck the system aka her mom. When faced with difficult decisions, Sam did what a normal person would do, hide them so that she doesn’t hurt the person involved with this decision/secret. Not saying it’s right, but it’s what a lot of people would do. This eats her away until she does the right thing she should have done from the start. I loved this about her, how realistic she was. Teenagers are faced with similar things in OUR lives and it’s never easy, but her strength was inspiring and noteworthy. Decisions are hard, and so is life, so suck it up and do what YOU think is right, not what others tell you to do. And so, finally, she does, no matter the consequences that would damage her happiness.
The only thing I hated of this book was her best friend, Nan (what’s up with everyone using that name in YA now?). She is the bitchiest and worst friend in all of history. She’s an egoistical and jealous stupid bitch that deserves a kill blow where it hurts her the most. That’s all I’m sharing because SPOILERS.
This is one of those smile-goofily-and-sigh-in-public-I-don’t-give-a-fuck book. You can see the characters falling in love slowly as the story goes on and how they face their own life problems. No one is perfect, and not even Samantha’s picture-perfect family can get away from every-day problems and family drama like you think they do. The Garrett’s were like having the family of Cheaper by a Dozen next door. I loved every bit of this book (except those all-around special characters you can’t help but wish to stick a freaking tree up their behinds). The character interaction, the “villains”, the setting, and how everything turned out in the end.
I wanted to read more of Samantha and Jase, of their sweet, cute, swoony, romantic and amazing romance, but yeah. The author has to end the book some time. I had thought this book was a stand alone. But turns out that the author mentioned recently a sequel with one of Jase’s sister, Alice, and Nan’s twin brother, Timmy. SOOO EXCITED FOR MORE!!!
Rating: 5 whole freaking stars
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