Monday, February 27, 2012

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Lola and the Boy Next DoorLola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Goodreads: 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.

My take: I loved Anna and the French Kiss so very much. I love the way Perkins writes. She tells a story without the unnecessary keeping of crucial information. Lola has an uncoventional family. Her father is really her uncle who adopted her when he drunk mother got pregnant and her. Her other father is her father's husband. They are strict fathers and like to keep Lola on a short leash but approve of her self-expression through fashion and color. They do NOT approve of Max, Lola's 22 year old boyfriend.

Cricket (the boy next door) moves back to his house with his famous sister, Caliope, and the old feelings return. The real story is Lola figuring out who she really is and who she wants to be. Will she allow her birth and genetics to define her, her boyfriend, her clothes, or is she someone else altogether? Obviously, each character plays a part in this self-discovery and Cricket is a perfect love interest as he is defining himself apart from being his twin sister's sidekick.

Very sweet story, well told without the unwanted details. There is sex but it is not spelled out. There is drug use but it is necessary for Lola to define herself apart from her mother. Lola's parents are gay dads; again no sexual details and I loved the way they were portrayed as fathers. Lots of sexual tension. I'd suggest it for an older teenager and up.


Paige Cuccaro said...

I've heard SO many good things about this book. I have to give it a shot. Thanks for the helpful review!

Patricia Eimer said...

I loved Anna and the French Kiss so I'm hoping this one is as good. Going to get the sample right now.