Lola and the Boy Next Dorr by Stephanie Perkins
Reading level: Ages 14 and up
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile (September 29, 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.
Upon finished Stephanie Perkins debut novel Anna and the French Kiss I was filled with such happiness that I instantly went on goodreads to find out what she was publishing next. I was beyond happy when that very book Lola and the Boy Next Door found it's way into my very eager hands. I instantly devoured it on the plane trip home and was bouyed by happiness. It is amazing that Stephanie Perkins can infuse your mind, body and soul with such feel good endorphines that you cannot help but smile.
Lola and the Boy Next Door is geographically located in the most amazing city of San Francisco and with one of the most memorable protagonists that you will ever encounter. "Lola" is unlike many girls you will meet because she is smart, full of sass and with an eye for fashion that is unique and fearless. In fact, the world is her runway and every day she walks out her front door you are unsure of what you will encounter. Lola seems to have everything she wants, a loving family home, a cool job with awesome co-workers (hint, hint) and a hot older boyfriend, then the unimaginable happens. Cricket Bell and his family come back to live next door and Lola is beside herself because all she can remember is how upset she is with Cricket and how she never wanted to see him again. What happens next will keep you entertained as you witness the adventures of life, love and wardrobe changes in the world of Lola Nolan.
I simply adored Anna and The French Kiss, it was by far one of my very favorite reads ever so knowing this I tried to go into this read with no expectations, which is difficult but I managed quite well. Yet, I was pleased beyond measure to get reaquainted with Anna and St. Clair again, their presence in this novel was welcome but not overbearing and seeing them again and thriving made me happy. Yeah! LOVE!! Besides seeing a few old friends it was great to get wrapped up in a whole new cast and each lent a bit a warmth to this whimsical tale. While I enjoyed this supportnive new cast witnessing Lola's fashion choices were one of my favorite bits about this story, although some outfits were questionable they all seemed utterly adorable and suited for her personality.
Lola and the Boy Next Door is a great companion novel to Anna and the French Kiss but it stand well on it's own merit and you will surely adore it for Stephanie Perkins is a master of romantic story telling. It has been months since I finished this story and I still think of it fondly and wish that I had a boy next door to "fall" in love with.
**Lola and the Boy Next Door image inspiration**