Two Minute Review: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Saturday, May 31, 2014
Title: Lola and the Boy Next Door
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Genre: contemporary, young adult
Series: Anna and the French Kiss #2
Pages: 338
Published: September 29, 2011
Source: borrowed library
Rating: 5 out of 5
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.

Reviewed by Danielle

I'd have dipped my toes into contemporary YA a long time ago, if I knew there were characters like Anna Oliphant or Cricket Bell in them.

Stephanie Perkins is my favorite discovery of the year after her second home run with Lola and the Boy Next Door. It's not even that I love the character, which I do, or the love interest, with I dooooo, it's great writing, complex motivations, and an effortless diversity that make Lola brilliant.

The second book in a romance series, the kind that stars another couple, but brings the first back in a supporting role? It's usually pretty hard to separate one from the other, because the characters, (especially the male love interests who are usually cardboard standees,) are all written in the same voice. Not so here! I can hear the Brit in St. Clair. I can hear the eccentric nervousness in Cricket and the confusion and doubt in Lola. It's so well done.

As far as basic plots go, there’s nothing overly groundbreaking about a boy and girl who live next door falling in love. Even the “communicating through notes on their facing windows” has been done. But what really struck me was the care put into Lola and Cricket’s home lives. Calliope, Cricket’s twin, could easily have been written as a one dimensional villain, but she’s not. Likewise, I loved the way Lola tackled the stereotypes of gay dads head on, by saying neither is the woman and they both do typically masculine and feminine things. And they love each other and Lola and I love them and I’m swooning again.

If I had one quibble, it would be with how much Anna and St. Clair are deployed. They’re a little like fairy godparents, flittering around and showing up rather conveniently to bring Lola and Cricket together. Other than that? I can’t find a thing to complain about.

OK, one more thing.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Copyright © 2015 Ageless Pages Reviews. All Rights Reserved.

Amelia Theme by The Lovely Design CO and These Paper Hearts.