Lola and the Boy Next Door

Lola and the Boy Next Door

by Stephanie Perkins


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Lola and the Boy Next Door 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 213 reviews.
Nikkayme More than 1 year ago
Lola, oh Lola, you astound me with your ability to turn me into a puddle of emotion. Lola and the Boy Next Door is the most perfectly executed and excruciatingly anticipatory love story I've ever read. Lola Nolan is - as I've dubbed her - badass chic. She loves to wear a frilly dress, but rocks it with combat boots. She dresses in costumes, not to disguise anything, but to be herself. And boy is Lola one hot mess of a girl. She has a sexy, rocker boyfriend named Max, but a strange and torrid history with her old neighbors, the Bell twins, who just happen to move back in next door. Unwanted feelings, 'traumatic' memories, and the best romantic tension ensue. Lola is one of those characters that are impossible not to love. Everything about her made me love her more. Her outfits, wigs, the way she thinks out loud - literally, she says it all out loud without realizing it - and the way she loves so completely. Her parents mean the world to her and she's not afraid to show it. Both of her dads are the kind of parents that YA is severely lacking and I loved their involvement in Lola's life. In fact, every single character is fleshed out and has purpose in the story. Andy and Nathan - Lola's dads - a pie bakery owner (via the kitchen) and a lawyer, respectively, are like any other dads. They enforce called check-ins when Lola is out, make the 22 year old Max come over for Sunday brunch, and freak when boys are in Lola's room. Norah, Lola's birth mom, even plays a role, by forcing Lola to open her eyes to things she maybe isn't willing to see. Lola's best friend Lindsey is not nearly as sparkly and colorful as Lola, but she's her best friend and is there for her whenever she needs her. Anna and Etienne St. Clair make an appearance or two as well, so if you loved Anna and the French Kiss, be prepared for some more fun from them. Then there are the Bell twins. Calliope comes off as very cold-shoulderish, but her years of being cut off from normal teen life as a world-class figure skater plays into that a great deal. Getting to know her and seeing her reasoning softens her a bit though. Now for Cricket. Yes, Cricket. Oh how I did not want to like him. Lola has a boyfriend and he's sexy and a budding rock star, who suffers through double dad interrogation, and I really liked him. But then I LOVED Cricket. How do you love a boy named Cricket? Read Lola and try not to. It's impossible, what with his tight pants, enthusiastic nature, and constant smiles. He's insecure, but somehow confident; a little geeky, but completely sexy at the same time; intense and funny and intelligent and selfless. He has this pureness and innocence about him that makes him perfect. But he's perfect because he's imperfect. His flaws - like Lola's flaws - make him a great character. The romance in Lola and the Boy Next Door is absolutely, stunningly, delectable. Never before have I read something that creates so much tension and anticipation and that 'pleasepleaseplease kiss' sensation so well. That's what Lola will do to you. You'll fall in love with these characters, with their lives, and their hopes and dreams. I know I did. Stephanie Perkins has more than done it again with Lola. She has outdone herself, improved upon her previous writing, and given us a story that will resonate with every single person who reads it.
pagese More than 1 year ago
I loved Anna and the French Kiss, so I really had high hopes for this one. I was keeping my fingers crossed that Stephanie's sophomore book would deliver. I'm happy to say it did! At first, I wasn't sure what to think of Lola. She's so different from any other character I've read, and such a drastic change from Anna. I also didn't identify with her as much. I don't have that artistic flair and tend to prefer to go with the flow not stand out in the crowd. But, slowly that characteristic really began to grow on me. She's everything I'm not, and I really admired that about her. I also admired the fact that she's a typical teen. With things begin to snowball, she questions who she really is. But, she soon realized that being who you are doesn't always mean fitting to everyone else's standards. A nice change of pace is that Lola is being raised by her two dads, who are really her biological uncle and his partner. Her mother occasionally comes in and reeks havoc in her life. I liked Cricket from the first time we meet him. I love how it seems like he just appears were ever Lola is. Some of it is coincidental, but other times you can tell he's making a valiant effort to reconnect with Lola. I enjoyed his personality. He's like a combination of nerdy mixed with a couple other "types", it's no wonder that Lola is so attracted to him. I found ironic that Lola never flat out told him that she had a boyfriend. It's not something I really faulted her on, because I could tell she was really struggling with her feeling concerning Cricket. It's funny how a book can twist around how you feel about things. I was prepared to dislike Calliope (Cricket's sister) and I did for part of the book. But, she really comes through in the end. I admired how the how family has backed her in her dreams. I think the fact that Cricket has put some much of his life on hold for her shows a sense of who he is and what's important to him. I also really liked Max at first, despite their age difference. In the end, I couldn't believe that he acted that way he did to Lola. But, maybe he was really hurt by her actions and this was his only way of expressing it. In the end, I decided that Lola was just as fantastic as Anna, but in an entirely different way. I'm amazed that Stephanie has managed to write two completely different heroines and their romances. I can't wait to read her next one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Coming from Anna and the French Kiss, i expected a great book. The beginning is slow and horrible. The first 60-70 pages are filled with introductions. I understand introducing the plot, characters and etc is important, but it does not need to take up that many pages. However, once you get past the introductions, this book turns out to be great, and similar to Anna anf the French Kiss in the sense of a great teenage romance novel. Please disregard the horrible beginning and you will find it to be an amazing romance novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can't begin to say how much this story touched me. Lola was a breath of fresh air and Cricket is the love of my life. I wanted to hold him tight and NEVER let him go. Read this book....if you don't enjoy're a fool.
KimballSK More than 1 year ago
I really want Lola to be my friend because: 1. I love Pushing Daisies so much, too, and own every episode. It's just so pretty and Kristen Chenowith is a-maz-ing! 2. Thanks to Lola, I totally have my Halloween costume idea for this year and I have been obsessing over it since I read this book. 3. I love wigs too! (See previous Halloween costume obsession...) I don't have the guts to wear one outside of socially accepted holidays, but I sure wish I did! I look great in an electric blue, bobbed wig!! 4. Lola has two wonderful dad's who live in San Francisco, have a great victorian house and hold amazing brunches. (One is also a pie-baker, yum!) I just know if Lola and I were friends I could come to Sunday Brunch! 5. Lola has a great BFF, works with Anna, hangs out with St. Clair and has a fun, quirky boy next door. I would hang out with Lindsey and have a Veronica Mars marathon every day of the week! So, Lola has a great life, but it gets a little complicated (natch) when her former friends move back in town, right next door. She's dating an older, bad-boy, rocker and I loved the way this relationship played out. I have dated my share of borderline-jerky guys in the past and Perkins has spun this tale in a very realistic way. Max is not overtly bad or abusive and (although you know how this is going to all play out) you can understand why Lola is dating him. Let me just say this: In my experience, if your family and friends hate the person you are dating (as long as they have concrete reasons), you should not be dating them. Your loved ones are right, you are love-struck and wrong. Every. Time. Then... Cricket's back! Uh-oh! What's a girl to do?? Outside of the fact that he goes by "Cricket" (really?), he's a cute, nerdy boy who loves Lola just the way she is. Awww. Lola and the Boy Next Door was a fun read with interesting characters. Although there are no big twists or surprises here, Lola's journey is charming.
enticed More than 1 year ago
This book kept me hooked from beginning to end. it was as good as Anna&thefrench kiss.
bookwormygirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I shall start this review with a warning¿ this is a gush-fest. Fan girl sighing, squeeing and high-fiving will follow¿ enter at your own risk.Stephanie Perkins is my hero. Yes, Anna and the French Kiss was phenomenal ¿ still one of my favorites. And yes, I do gush about it to random strangers at book stores and have even forced one or two of them to grab the book and rush to the nearest cashier. I can¿t always say its to buy the book or to call security, but whatevah. With that said, and, of course, needless to say, I was uber excited when I heard about Lola and the Boy Next Door. But even though I was convinced it would be just as wonderful as AatFK, I always have that little nagging at the back of my mind that maybe it won¿t be as good as the awesomeness that its predecessor was. Well, let me tell y¿all, you have nothing to fear!! It was AHHHH-mazing!Lola was as quirky and endearing as they come. I loved everything about her. Her fathers, her wonderful sense of style (the dresses, the wigs, the stockings and shoes¿ le sigh), her rocker boyfriend and yes, especially, the boy next door, Cricket. Love the name *high-five, Stephanie Perkins.* Cricket was everything a girl dreams of¿ at least, a girl like me (when I was younger of course). He was awkward, sweet, funny, and so lovable. I loved them individually and together.While AatFK had more of a fairtytale feel to it, Lola¿s had a more ¿real¿ vibe going. These characters may sound perfect, but if anything, they are perfectly flawed. They¿re not perfect, they don¿t have all the answers, and while I did have a goofy grin on my face for the most part, there were some moments that had me at the brink of tears. Lola and the Boy Next Door was everything that I could have asked for in a book. I have not one single complaint (well, maybe that it ended ¿ le sigh). Oh, and did I mention the many cameos that Anna and Etienne make¿ yep, they¿re there too (squee!). I loved it! I think you will too.
lenoreva on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lola lives in San Francisco with her two dads and a dog named Heavens to Betsy. She loves where she lives except for one thing: the twins next door could move back at anytime. See, Lola has a painful past with Cricket - a boy she crushed on who broke her heart - so when his family moves back in, Lola tries not to care (after all, she has a boyfriend now). But will she once again fall for the boy next door?With its quirky characters and fun set pieces, LOLA gave me the sugar high I was craving when I picked up the book. I really enjoyed getting to know Lola and Cricket, and rooting for them to overcome the roadblocks to their romantic attraction.One of the things which defines Lola is her habit of dressing up in crazy fun outfits, and the way Perkins described them made me want to dig out my old Babysitter Club books and compare Lola's clothes to Claudia Kishi's. Of course, I don't think Claudia ever wore anything as fab as Lola's Marie Antoinette dress!
TheBookCellar on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Since the day I finished Anna and the French Kiss I have been waiting for another Stephanie Perkins masterpiece. She delivered it with Lola and the Boy Next Door. Now that I have finished this one, it will be a very long wait until Isla and the Happily Ever After! I don't think my love for Lola and the Boy Next Door quite lived up to Perkins's debut, but it comes pretty darn close.Lola as a character was a lot of fun, but it bothered me a bit at times that I felt like she was playing the classic "mean girl" role from time to time. I sat there just thinking, Lola what are you doing? Cricket was oh so perfect, I still am sitting here debating whether I liked him or St Clair better. I loved Lindsey, she is such a great friend.I LOVE that Stephanie Perkins had Anna and St. Clair come back in this one, while they were a more minor part of the plot I loved having them there. I just admire both their personalities so much, so it was so much fun to have them alongside Lola and Cricket!The plot was a ton of fun. I loved that is wasn't just a straight plot, there were so many little things going on, such as with Norah and other characters. I loved that it was so obvious where the story would end, but there were so many stops along the way.Something I love about Perkins's writing is that she doesn't give readers the obvious. With Anna and French Kiss, the plot is at this boarding school in Paris. Lola and the Boy Next Door gives you this story with a girl who dresses in costume, figure skating, and more. Yet, even though all of that is basically unknown to me, I find it so easy to connect to the stories of the characters because she makes her characters so real. They are flawed, which makes them like everyone else.After finishing Lola and the Boy Next Door, I feel like I need to go back and read Anna and the French Kiss and this one back to back, and it would make for about the most perfect day of awesome ever! Lola and the Boy Next Door is one of those books you NEED to read, its story will captivate you and the characters are just so lovely.
YABliss on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I don't think there's much more I can say about Stephanie Perkins' awesomeness or the unique feel-good dreaminess of her books, that has not already been said. Lola and the Boy Next Door is another contemporary YA romance masterpiece just like Anna and the French Kiss was.Anna was my TOP favorite book last year. It must be hard to follow up such an amazing debut. But Perkins did it flawlessly. While I felt Anna was mainly focused on setting development, I think Lola was more focused on character development. The parent's relationship was so powerful and felt so absolutely real that it drew me in to the point that I felt myself wishing I had two gay parents. It's an extraordinary family portrayal unlike any other I've experienced or read about. And this felt SO refreshing!Needless to say that my expectations were high in the boy department. While I don't think Cricket reached the levels of *drool* that St. Clair did, I think he was very well done and very swoon-worthy. I specially loved all the boy next door dynamics. And Lola! Okay. Lola was whoa. Probably one of the most memorable characters you will ever read! Absolutely loved her.Also, don't you hate all these instant romances in all other sub-genres of YA? I'm sorry but I don't quite buy it. Love happens, and it's complicated, and it takes time, and sometimes it works in weird awful ways, and others it just doesn't. I'm so delighted to read an author who can actually portray the innocence of teen years with the depth of the feelings in a believable manner. Not that there aren't others who do it as well, but this story just has a something that feels more true and relatable. And that is WHY I read.If you want to read about truly authentic teens in a light yet deeply loveable story, this is THE book for you!
molliekay on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This sophomore title from Stephanie Perkins lives up to its predecessor's fame. Lola is not your typical high school student; her love of the dramatic, from her older boyfriend to her fabulous costumes she dons on a daily basis, makes her stand out in so many ways. For those of you who loved Anna and the French Kiss, you'll be happy to see some familiar faces.
resugo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I had a difficult time with this book in the beginning. I didn't like the decisions that Lola was making and I was really irritated with her. Mostly I did not like her relationship with her boyfriend, Max. She was 17 while he was 22 and their relationship was very physical. As in they were sleeping together. Ugh. Especially when I know that in the end Lola will be with the boy next door, and not with the older man. It was just...ew. Everything physical was off page, but still too much. However, it didn't take me long to fall in love with Lola. Even if I didn't like her decisions in the beginning, she was such a sweet and endearing and quirky and original character. I enjoyed being inside her head (except when she was gushing over Max) and I loved how she grew as a person. She really did grow up and I loved tagging along as she did so. Cricket. sigh. Cricket. He is SO cute. Everything about his is just awesome. I love his name. I love his style. And I love how he loves Lola. I love how introverted and smart and sweet he is. He is a great love interest. Much better for Lola than the older guy. Perkins is so fun to read. Her stories flow and are addicting and so funny. I love all her characters, they are fully formed and their emotions are real. I love her settings, too. I really enjoyed San Francisco with Lola and Cricket. And Anna and Etienne. Yes, Anna and Etienne are in the book quite a bit. Much more than I was expecting. I really like this book. A lot.
foggidawn on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Life is going pretty well for Lola Nolan -- well, her parents don't like her boyfriend Max, but that's par for the course -- until Cricket and Calliope Bell move back in to the house next door.Calliope is a champion figure skater and Olympic hopeful, but Lola remembers her only as a Mean Girl who did her best to make Lola's life miserable. Having her back would be bad enough . . . but having Cricket back is worse. Cricket was Lola's first love, until the day he broke her heart. Lola struggled to get over Cricket, but it appears that he may never have gotten over her. Now that she is in a steady, committed relationship with Max, why does she still feel so confused when Cricket is around? Worse, while Max grows increasingly distant and antagonistic towards Lola's family, Cricket is always ready to step in and lend a hand in a crisis, or to offer Lola a shoulder to cry on. Can Lola date Max and be friends with Cricket as well, or will one of those relationships have to go?This book is as fluffy and sparkly as one of Lola's signature outfits, but with strong characters and believable conflict as well. Lola is not always the most likeable heroine, but her struggles are heartfelt, and her sometimes bad decisions understandable. Cricket's boyish charm is likely to melt more than a few readers' hearts, too.Minor quibble: Cricket Bell is supposedly a descendant of Alexander Graham Bell, but both of Bell's sons died in infancy. He could, of course, be descended from one of Bell's daughters -- but then, why the surname Bell? Of course, this won't make a difference for most readers, and at some point Cricket's family line had to become fictional, so it's pretty much a non-issue.All in all, this was a delightful read. No doubt Perkins will be taking her place alongside YA romance superstars like Maureen Johnson and Sarah Dessen before long.
wsquared on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lola Nolan thinks life in her San Francisco neighborhood is pretty great: she has a hot (older) rocker boyfriend, two caring (if overbearing) dads, and one dedicated best friend. When she's not hanging out with any of the above, she's either working at a local movie theater or creating her latest over-the-top outfit-cum-costume. But all of this happiness threatens to fall apart when Calliope and Cricket, her old neighbors and the two responsible for crushing her spirit and breaking her heart three years ago, move back in.In this companion novel to last year's overwhelmingly popular Anna and the French Kiss, Stephanie Perkins has crafted another swoon-worthy teen romance full of quirky, likable characters. Lola is a force -- yes, she is a bit melodramatic, but she's also full of life. I loved her endlessly wacky and inspired outfits and costuming prowess. The boy-next-door, Cricket, captured my heart with his lovable nerdiness. Their burgeoning relationship was both delightful and agonizing (just tell him you like him already!), though that's to be expected in a romance novel. My one real qualm was that Lola's original boyfriend, Max, was just too obviously wrong for her, making the inevitability of the end just that much more inevitable.Of course, it's not all teen angst and romance -- Perkins deftly handles the relationship between Lola and her mostly absent, often homeless mother, letting it evolve in a realistic manner, and Lola's friendship with Lindsey felt very true to life. I was surprised by how big of a role Anna and Etienne played in the story, but this should work as a standalone title for those who haven't read Anna (but if readers like this one, they definitely should!). This is a great pick for any contemporary YA lit lover!
ReadingVirgo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Once upon a time, Lola loved the boy next door. It all ended very badly though when he broke her heart and then moved away. Years later, Lola¿s got a pretty good life with a bright future in fashion design, two dads who love her and a very hot rocker boyfriend. What¿s the one thing that could bring Lola¿s perfect life crashing down? The return of Cricket Bell¿the boy next door.If you loved Anna and the French Kiss, you will adore Lola and the Boy Next Door. Not exactly a sequel, though Anna and Etienne are big characters, and we get to meet a whole new cast of fun and unique characters. Including Cricket Bell, who fully brings on the fingertip tingling swoon! A great, fun and sweet teen read!
elizardkwik on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was such a fun book. I love the characters and the descriptions. It felt very real, moved along at a good pace, and left me wanting more. Lola is a very unique main character who struggles with some unusual situations, all while being very easy to relate to. The book touches on a variety of "issues" without being one of those heavy issue books. Recommended for readers of Sarah Dessen, Susane Colasanti, Deb Caletti, or anyone who likes good books.
C.Ibarra on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Amazing! Stephanie Perkins has done it again. This is Young Adult contemporary done perfectly. Main character Lola is nothing like the lead from Stephanie Perkins' debut novel, Anna and the French Kiss. This is just a testament to Perkins versatility. Add to that the fact that she made two characters who are so very different, but managed to make me love them both. I will admit that while I thought Lola¿s love interest was sweet, he didn¿t live up to the amazing St. Clair. That boy just can¿t be outdone. I totally dug the two dad storyline. As the plot dove deeper into Lola¿s past my heart just broke for her. A little darker than the events in Anna, but still amazing.Perkins has a gift when it comes to the written word. Pair that with an understanding of the teen mind, that as a mother of an almost teen I can¿t help but envy, and you have novels that are nothing less than spectacular. This is an author capable of wowing both teens and their parents. If you haven¿t experienced Anna and Lola¿s world you really must. I mean it. Like now! Rush out and buy or borrow these ASAP. You won¿t regret it!
mikitchenlady on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lola is her own girl, a future costume/clothing designer, dressing in ways that many consider unusual, some unique. She lives with her two fathers, one who is technically her uncle. Her mother, a woman with a checkered past, gave Lola to her brother and his partner to adopt years ago. So our story begins as young Lola is involved with Max, a 20+ year old lead singer in a band. Lola is pretty happy with her life, her friends, her developing relationship with Max, then who should come back to the house next door but Cricket, his twin ice-skating champion sister and their family. Cricket broke Lola's heart years ago, and she's never quite gotten over him and what happened. And, of course, as most fiction tends to go, she won't be able to avoid Cricket and must deal with her feelings for him. Lola's mother re-enters the story in a time of need, further complicating Lola's life.I really liked this book from the beginning. The characters and their emotions felt genuine. No one was painted with broad brush strokes - everyone had good and bad points, like we humans do. The emotions were not overwrought. I especially liked how Perkins showed that we all have different perspectives, and that what we (or in this case, Lola) think happens in a situation may not be the whole truth. I will definitely be recommending this to my high school students, and will check out Anna and the French Kiss soon.
ericajsc on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Dear Stephanie Perkins, How I love your writing! Thank you for the days and months and years you slave over one book, because that hard work and dedication shines through every word on the page. It is practically perfect in every way.Hugs,EricaI loved Anna and the French Kiss, which I completely expected before I even read the first word. Not only did I love it, I was blown away by it. So I was expecting to love Lola and the Boy Next Door just as much. And yet ¿ I think I love it even more!Lola and Cricket¿s backstory is bittersweet. I don¿t want to say too much about it because Lola tells the story better than I can. I will say that, although Lola was undeniably hurt by Cricket, I had a hard time seeing Cricket as a bad guy in my head. He was such the quintessential nice guy in every interaction in the present day that I could not believe he would be capable of such callousness. But a bruised and broken heart is not easy to mend, so Lola is careful to protect herself from getting hurt by the same guy twice. Even when she starts to feel things for him again. Especially when she¿s feeling these things while she has a boyfriend who she swears she loves more than anything. Somehow their story manages to be both complex with so many obstacles standing between them and simple in the sense that they so obviously have a great amount of love for each other (and I don¿t just necessarily mean romantic love ¿ they genuinely love and respect who the other person is at the core). Watching them move around each other was a delight.Everything about this book exemplifies what an amazing writing Stephanie Perkins is. The attention to detail is impeccable, but these details blend into the story so well that I didn¿t even notice them until I thought back to the story and realized just how much I knew about these characters. In many cases such details can trip of the pacing of the book, but not so here. Instead they only serve to add depth to the characters and their stories.To re-iterate what Stephanie posted on her blog: Lola is not Anna. Cricket is not Étienne. San Francisco is not Paris. But Stephanie Perkins is Stephanie Perkins, and no matter what story she¿s telling, I want to be listening.
jacindahinten on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lola and the Boy Next Door was one of my most anticipated reads of 2011. I just knew, deep down, that it was going to be all kinds of awesome just like Anna and the French Kiss was. Let me tell you, Lola is just as good¿maybe even better than Anna! WOWZERS! Lola is one unique character and she will always stand out in my mind as one of the most distinctive characters I¿ve read in young adult literature. I loved her from the first page all of the way to the end. She never got on my nerves, I understood her thoughts and feelings, and she never did too many irrational (only a couple), spur of the moment type things in regards to boys. Many readers mention many young adult books have ¿missing/bad/uncaring parents.¿ Lola has two dads (also has a great detective/Nancy Drew loving bestie-had to mention this) who actually care about who their daughter dates and are active in her life¿Lola got grounded a couple of time during her story. She does have a birth mother who has her problems and reminded me of my own mother. Lola at one point thought this:"Why is it so impossible for her to be a normal adult?"I practically have that same thought every day about my own mother.Now on to ¿the Boy Next Door¿¿Cricket. I know the name is crazy and out there (people have called my name crazy), but it works for him and I never thought his name to be outlandish while reading. He¿s just all sorts of awesomeness and is super sweet and shy. The romance in the story¿perfect, sweet, adorable¿I could go on and on! Cricket said the following¿so you know he¿s the best guy around!"I know you aren't perfect. But it's a person's imperfections that make them perfect for someone else."Stephanie Perkins knows how to tell a story. She makes her stories unique by adding components such as ice skating (I watched tons of this as a child!), inventions, and costume wearing. She has become an author who I will pick up a book she's written without even caring what it¿s about. I read Lola in less than 24 hours¿I was glued to this book! P.S. Fans of Anna and the French Kiss will be happy to know that Anna and St. Clair make numerous appearances throughout the book!
lifeafterjane on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Happy sighs, twirls and twinkle lights. Loved, loved, loved this book. Loved it far more than it's predecessor, Anna and the French Kiss. Perkins writes amazing leading ladies, but Lola outshines Anna like a supernova does a light bulb.Lola is 17 and in a relationship with Max, a 22 year old bad boy in a band. He's everything your mother wants you to stay away from...sounds delicious doesn't he? Her parents were far more tolerable than most would have been. She likes him for his, edginess, the rawness that comes across in his music. He likes her because she's a young thing dressed as a strawberry. Get your shotguns, dads.But Max isn't her first love. A few years before she fell pink-wigged-head over platform-combat-boot-heels for Cricket Bell, the very tall, very odd, boy next door, you know, that boy, the one who broke her heart. Cricket and his family would pop in and out of the house next door; his sister's ice-skating career moving them frequently to different places around the country. It's been two years since the Bells have inhabited the lavender Victorian and despite the many wishes Lola has made that they never return- they've moved back in. And you know what they say about your first never get over it.Lola is such a quirky, unique character, with her flamboyant costumes and her life covered in glitter. Lola never plays at being whoever or whatever it is she's dressed as. She revels in the clothes themselves, her attire serving only to accent Lola. I grew insanely jealous as I read each and every outfit change, and her reasons behind what she wore. I'd love the freedom to randomly show up somewhere in a tutu, to rock a raincoat on a sunny day simply because I liked the color. She was so creative and imaginative. I missed her for days once the book was over.
allureofbooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
So, I know everybody and their mother that hasn't already read it is dying for the upcoming release of Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins. I was definitely no exception - I could not wait to get my hands on it after the brilliant awesomeness that is Anna and the French Kiss. However - while Lola had a lot of amazing things going for it, it didn't live up to Anna for me.Stephanie Perkins is so flippin' fantastic at weaving tons of detail into her writing that it is unreal. Seriously, I was in awe of this in her first book and it is nothing is not stepped up even higher in Lola. The personalities of Lola and Cricket are outstanding...and all the secondary characters are richly fleshed out as well. Seriously, I bow down to the master. Everything from Cricket's crazy inventions as a kid to the kinds of candy Lola leaves lying around her room add so much depth and realism to the story. I could rave about it forever. I loved Lola's dads, their dog (with the awesome name Heavens to Betsy), and even the characters we're meant to dislike are brought to life so well that it is easy to imagine knowing them.Also, don't even get me started on the repeated appearances of Anna and St. Clair. Swoon. SWOON.Unfortunately, it was the plot of the story that didn't work as well for me as Anna. Don't get me wrong - I still liked it a lot and plan on adding the book to my shelves when it is released, I just want to caution you to lower your expectations just a tiny bit so you won't feel the same twinge of disappointment I did. Lola and Cricket had a lot of things keeping them apart in this book just like Anna and St. Clair had in their story - however, in the first book I felt like there were so many circumstances in the way that they simply couldn't have come together any sooner or in a better way. In this book, I wanted to punch Lola in the face for being so immature. Seriously, Cricket was there. Waiting for her. Loving her. Being there for her. She was stubbornly dating a JERK, bound and determined to prove to everyone that she was right. Holy Toledo was it frustrating.Anyway, this is obviously all just my personal preference, because I know the vast majority of people who have read it really do love it more than Anna. I just wanted to add my cautionary note to those of you that might feel the same way I do - prepare to enjoy the story, just don't read it with a constant comparison in mind!
4sarad on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Stephanie Perkins sure knows how to write good romance!! I think it may have taken me a little longer to warm up to this book than to Anna and the French Kiss, but probably because you don't see a lot of Cricket in the beginning. How can you not fall in love with Cricket Bell? I really enjoyed all of the characters in this book. They all had distinct personalities... ALL of them. Well done! I would have given the book 5 stars if it weren't predictable.
CAS2199 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lola is a quirky and eccentric teenager aspiring to be the next big fashion designer. She likes to wear the most outlandish clothing and wigs. Lola fits in perfectly in artsy San Francisco with her two dads and has grown up in one of the beautiful Victorian homes next door to the twins, Cricket and Calliope Bell. They used to be inseparable as children and things changed once Cricket broke Lola's heart. However, things are different for Lola now. The Bells have moved away to accommodate Calliope's figure skating career and Lola has an older rocker boyfriend now. Things are going smoothly for Lola until the Bells move back next door along with Cricket. Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins truly captures first love and captured my heart as well.After reading Anna and the French Kiss, I knew I HAD to get my hands on a copy of Lola and the Boy Next Door. Much to my surprise, I realized that it is very different from Anna and the French Kiss, which I've come to realize is both good and bad. Lola was harder for me to relate to than Anna. She's a bit out there, overly dramatic and a tad selfish. I really couldn't connect with her like I could Anna. Cricket makes for a really cute love interest, because he's a bit on the nerdy side as he's an aspiring inventor. He is constantly in the shadow of his figure skating phenom sister, Calliope, and is trying to find his way. I didn't like how he was bossed around by Calliope; I wanted him to grow a pair and that in itself frustrated me. Cricket is a downright good guy though and lets be honest, we need that in YA. Also, I must point out how much I LOVED Lola's dads. They were fantastic and I wish there were more books out there that showcase a family dynamic like Lola's. Perkins' writing style is enthralling. Even though I couldn't relate to the characters as much as I had hoped for, I was still very much so invested in Lola and the Boy Next Door. I really enjoy her writing style and before I knew it, I finished the book. Perkins reminds me so much of Sarah Dessen in that she can take a character, one that I don't necessarily relate to, and make me sympathize and root for her. I love that about Perkins!I also adored the concept of the "boy next door" as most people had something like that in their lives at some point. Perkins does a brilliant job of capturing this and making it magical. The stolen glances, the talking through the windows, the peeking across the space between the two houses, the long walks in the neighborhood....I loved it. It was so very Dawson's Creek. (*sigh*) One of the best parts of Lola and the Boy Next Door is the fact that Anna and St. Clair are in the book. St. Clair is his usual swoon-worthy self and it was nice to be revisited by Anna. I liked how Perkins weaved the two story lines together. Also, just like in Anna and the French Kiss, the setting of the novel becomes just as important and while Paris is a bit more romantic (in my opinion) than San Francisco, she still made the city come to life. It was the perfect location for a zany girl like Lola.All in all, Lola and the Boy Next Door is a delightful read that will take readers back to their first childhood crushes. Although it lacked some of the magic that Anna and the French Kiss had, I still recommend it for fans of contemporary fiction as well as Sarah Dessen. I am a huge fan of Stephanie Perkins and can't wait to read her third book, Isla and the Happily Ever After, which comes out in 2012 and I hear takes place in Paris! Merci beaucoup, Ms. Perkins!
callmecayce on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I liked but didn't love Anna and the Fench Kiss but oh my GOD, Lola and the Boy Next Door is amazing. It takes place in the same universe as Anna, but the worlds collide in the most unique sense (which I liked a lot). But what's truly wonderful about this book is Lola herself. Many YA characters, especially in chick lit, are the same or are trying to hard. What makes Lola different is that she's already herself, even if sometimes she doesn't see it. She's an amazingly strong character and Perkins has given her an uphill battle (related to her birth parents) that should be cliche but worked perfectly for me. One of the things I loved about this book was Lola's parents (her two dads) and best friend. Instead of being a burden on the plot or getting in the way of the story, they were vital to the plot. Her dads were strict for a reason and it seemed very real to me, along with Lola's relationships with her bff, Max and the fantastically named Cricket. I honestly loved pretty much everything about this book -- including the heartache and especially the last two chapters. I didn't want the book to end. While I don't much like chick lit, I do like the YA kind and Lola is possibly one of my favorites. I almost want to read this book all over again.