{Review} My Life Next Door by: Huntley Fitzpatrick

12:00 AM

Number of Pgs. 394 (Hardcover)
Publication date: June 14, 2012
Publisher: Dial Books For Young Readers
Genre: YA, Contemporary
How I got the copy:  Library
Rating:  3 Stars

A gorgeous debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another

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, numerous, messy, affectionate. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen-year-old Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love, Jase's family makes Samantha one of their own. Then in an instant, the bottom drops out of her world and she is suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

A dreamy summer read, full of characters who stay with you long after the story is over.

I've been using a new way of reviewing that I saw over at Making the Grade.  It breaks the book down and makes it easier to rate.  The way it works is each category gets a score out of ten points.  Then you add them all up + 50 (50% automatically for each book) and that's your score out of 100.

4/10:  I wanted to like this book as much as everyone else did, but I had so many problems with it.  In fact, I think the only reason I finished it is because Jase is awesome.  I'm not sure if it's because I had such high expectations from all the hype, but I was expecting something more...exciting.  Nothing really happens until the very end of the book. And the romance isn't funny or unusual.  It's just two people that live next to each other and meet.  Yes they have to sneak around, but that's part of what bothered me.  The main character was annoying.

5/10: Samantha was infuriating to me.  I'm thinking this may be because I just read such strong female leads like Alex in the Covenant Series, that when I got to Samantha's doormat personality I just couldn't take it.  She eventually grows a backbone, but not until the end of the book and even then she still is way too nice in my opinion.  

But the one reason I couldn't DNF the book was because of Jase.  He's the family guy that fixes everyone's problems.  He got that carefree and easy going vibe even though he is the glue that holds his hectic family together.  

Jase's family was also pretty great.  One of my best friends from high school had a family just like him.  She had a big family and her house was always chaos, but I loved it.  Their family was always welcoming and I pictured them when I was reading about the Garretts.  I love when books remind me of real life.  Oh and Geore, Jase's brother, was freakin' adorable!
 6/10: Sometimes contemporary books can have a really boring setting because the characters often don't leave their hometown.  This was one of those books.  Samantha goes to work and home and that's pretty much it.  But I did enjoy the scenes on the roof with Jase!
6/10: This was soooo slow in the beginning.  It wasn't until about page 300 or so where stuff started actually happening.  

8/10: I liked the author's actual writing.  The dialogue was very realistic to teens conversing.  The romantic scenes portrayed how teens really feel during their first love.  

I'm not sure if I'll read anything else by this author.  I think maybe if I do I need to not go in with such high expectations.  I wanted to like this one.  I really did!!!

“The Garretts were my bedtime story, long before I ever thought I’d be part of the story myself.” 
― Huntley FitzpatrickMy Life Next Door

"He's so easy to forgive.  No sins at all.  Not like my mom.  Not like me.  When our lips meet, I don't feel the familiar warmth and ease.  I feel like Judas."
― Huntley FitzpatrickMy Life Next Door



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