Thursday, October 16, 2014

*BOOK REVIEW* Lola and The Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins (Mild Spoilers)

Lola and the Boy Next Door (Anna and the French Kiss, #2)
{Author: Stephanie Perkins}
{Other books: Anna and The French Kiss, Isla and The Happily Ever After}
{Pages: 338}
{Published by: Dutton Books on September 29th, 2011}
{Setting: San Francisco, California}

Stephanie Perkins has a way of mixing background in with the original story. When reading "Lola" I noticed she did what she originally did with "Anna" (Referring to Anna and The French Kiss, book 1 of the trilogy). Stephanie kept the explanations minimal and spread out through the story. All the important info isn't just clumped together. Also, she has made a habit of leaving us hanging but eventually at some point in the story she comes back around to give us a hand and help explain things. It's quite an incredible process. Everything Stephanie writes has a certain feel to it- it's a certain young, airy, un-comprehendible feeling. To explain as soon as I finished "Anna" I HAD to read "Lola" absolutely had to. Now with "Isla" (Referring to Isla and the Happily Ever After, book 3 of the trilogy), I want to hold on and draw out the bubbly feeling her stories inject in me. 


The way her characters  act and interact make them believable, make them that certain feeling I mentioned. 

Lola is unique. From the bright teal wigs displayed around her room, to the jars of zippers and buttons, Lola Nolan is unique. She is quite the spunky character with a lot of 'umph' (pronounced 'ummfff'). What I did notice also was the fact that Lola being 17 was still pretty young and immature, rightly so being her 17 and young and immature. Stephanie didn't make Lola an overachiever and make her a middle aged woman in a teenage girl's body, she made her exactly her age. Even with her boyfriend, she didn't give up so easily when her parents were rejecting him, she kept up; like a teenager who thinks they know what's best for them and all would do. It's actually very sad- the predicament that made Lola and Cricket avoid each other, but it happens all the time. It has a name by the way, it's called... 'Skinny Love'.

Urban Dictionary: skinny love

Cricket is terrified of admitting that he liked Lola, and as much as he tried to break from that shell something always got in the way and he couldn't tell her. 
Another good thing though about the characters is the fact that you just get them. Some characters do, say or think things that make no real sense or are contradictory to past things they've said or done.  Except with Stephanie's characters they're just so consistent and understandable. One of the many things I love about them.
Steph's characters are definitely what I admire the most in her novels...besides the setting that is.  

Settings and Descriptions

Though I was quite depressed that Lola's story was not in France but in San Francisco, I got over it. Though it was a long rough process to do so. I did it. I'm going to be very honest, I think Stephanie Perkins could make the ghetto look and feel amazing. One of the cutest moments of "Lola" for me was when they began synchronizing when they opened their curtains, when they ate meals and when Lola would walk her dog. It was just plain adorable. Oh and lest not forget the even sweeter scene where Lola and Cricket slid down the slide...on pizza boxes! *Still Squealing* Sorry, my inner pre-teen is showing. *Begins tucking it away again*. 

Back to the review. 

Stephanie's descriptions of things are just spectacular. Even when she is talking about something as simple as the moon it seems magical. Also just a little scene I found incredibly adorable again is Chapter 17, page 193. If you love sweet gestures from a guy who secretly (but publicly) likes'll love this. Also check out Chapter 27, page 301. Their effortless relationship is very beautiful (and amusing). Though it doesn't seem effortless it truly is. You have to search a little but I believe we can end up finding out so many things about ourselves that we weren't aware of, through the pages of books. Like with Lola, the lesson is "There is a right one". Love shouldn't be a battle, it should be effortless in the feeling. The journey you take to be with "that one" on the other hand may require a few bumpy roads; a few roadblocks. But something so true would be infinite and would in effect knock down those barriers. As long as you have the bravery required to try. Lola had to learn that love encompasses many things. It includes jokes, and inability to hide stares, but it also includes first chances and second chances, and even third chances. You don't get many chances to find "The One" and it may take a second and third chance to realize that you blew the first chance, but as long as you seize it before it disappears you'll do just fine.

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