My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
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.
Publishes in US: June 14 2012
Buy it: Amazon / IndieBound / Barnes and Noble / The Book Depository
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My Life Next Door is a great read. I liked Samantha as a main character, and I could feel her need to belong. She watches the Garretts, a loud and loving family next door, until she surprisingly gets lured into their life and discovers what her family seems to lack.
I love the life portrayed by the Garretts, lots of noise, talking to one another, depending on each other, and the love that makes a house a home. Mrs. Garrett has the patience of a saint and is the mother that I hope to be. Jase is smart, funny and the more I read about him, the more I liked him. And youngster George is so concerned about life and just wants to be reassured. He says the cutest and funniest things, and makes me want to hug him. I like it when children are featured in books, and Ms. Fitzpatrick writes them wonderfully as she does the rest of the characters in the book.
Tim and Nan were also great characters. They never failed to surprise me and they added real life and depth to the story. Tim went through such a transformation and that is exactly what I love to read about. I was sad at the direction that Nan and Sam's relationship took and I think that there should have been some resolution there.
My Life Next door was exactly what I needed after a streak of darker contemporaries and then some dystopias. It was light at the right times, gave me the feel of summer that I am def. not getting here in real life, and it featured the family.
It was not all light though, it deals with some pretty heavy issues in between the sweet romance between Samantha and Jase. Some issues that I didn't know what I would have done in Sam's place. And the thing that makes Sam's world fall out from under her feet? Something that I never saw coming! My only real complaint is that the story is left pretty open ended, and this is one where I wanted to know exactly what happened with the characters.
Bottom line: Superb cast of characters and a sweet romance in this summery feeling contemporary.
Similar reads: Unbreak My Heart by Melissa C. Walker, First Comes Love by Katie Kacvinsky, The Next Door Boys by Jolene B. Perry
My question to you, my lovely readers:
Have you ever wanted to be part of another family?