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My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

My Life Next Door (edition 2012)

by Huntley Fitzpatrick

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315None35,860 (3.95)11
Title:My Life Next Door
Authors:Huntley Fitzpatrick
Info:Dial (2012), Hardcover, 304 pages
Collections:2013 Archive
Tags:Romance, Teens, Contemporary, Tweens, Issues, Aimee Swift, 2013

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My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick


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Hitting up another book in my tbr pile that I have been wanting to read, I find myself asking one question? WHY DID I READ THIS SOONER?!

Plot: I love stories that revolves two people from two different sides of the street. Both raised completely different, I can see why these two would hit it off. The plot revolves strongly around family so if you love a good plot that involves parents and siblings, then you will enjoy reading this.

Love/Friendship: This is the area I enjoyed the most. First off, I think this book puts in perspective of what goes on in people minds. We have this mom, who is, in all honesty, a hard working mom. But her mind has been changed due to hardship. And with that, she places strong reasoning on her daughter to stay away from Jase/The Garretts. Jase, on the other hand is relaxed and hard worker. I admire that about him. When he wants something, he goes for it. He is real with his emotions and is a perfect match for Samantha.

Family: In this story, its all about family, love and mistakes. We all make mistakes and though some mistakes can be forgiven, others you have to pay for. I think all the decisions made throughout the story form Samantha to who she is. She is a wise, strong woman, who is learning from her mother’s mistakes. She follows her heart and not what others say.

If you can’t tell, I adore this book! I love every aspect of the story and just getting a chance to walk in the characters shoes. It has plenty of entertainment to keep the reader solidly in the story. I did not put down this story once I started it. My Life Next Door is a beautiful read that experiences life as it is. It showcases hard work, family drama as well as an unexpected love of a lifetime. A touching story that is spirited with lots of heart, My Life Next Door is amazing! ( )
  Bookswithbite | Mar 31, 2014 |
My Life Next Door was sooooo cute, fun, and heartwarming! I cannot wait for Fitzpatrick's next book :) Review to come. ( )
  Emily_Anne | Mar 16, 2014 |
There were some things about this book I truly loved, but there were several pieces I felt needed to be changed in order to take it from a good book to an amazing book.

I'll start with what I loved:
The Garrett family of ten (two parents and eight kids) were well fleshed out (with the exception of Duff). It is tremendously difficult to differentiate that many characters so that readers can visualize them and keep track of them, and I thought Fitzpatrick did a beautiful job in that. I really felt connected to them, like I could feel the life, love, and mess that defined their family.

Samantha was real and easy to relate to. Jase was honest, uncomplicated, and attractive as a love interest.

The dialogue felt genuine, not forced, and the setting was such that it was easy to step in to that world and feel like I was there.

Now what it needed:
The first two thirds of the book was Samantha and Jase falling for each other. It was sweet, but it was a little slow and far too long. I would have cut a good deal of this, particularly the time after they got together, as it got a little hard to watch (there's a reason why people say--even if they are happy for you--"get a room"!). I am a total sucker for a love story, but this one went on longer than it should have, since it lacked any real conflict other than her mom's finding out and certain disapproval of their relationship.

Nan was a throw-away character and we spent way too much time with her. If it weren't for the fact that her brother Tim is interesting and integral to the story, I would say that character should have been cut altogether.

The twist (or "the unthinkable" as it says on the jacket flap) was great and brought a much-needed level of conflict and tension to the story. However, I felt like Jase and Samantha really needed to have a rip-roaring drag out fight where he really lets loose all the emotion inside him and breaks down. He holds so much inside and forgives too quickly. I think their relationship would have been stronger and the scene more powerful if they'd scraped the bottom of the emotional barrel together and come out clinging to one another.

I also felt like Fitzpatrick had a perfect opportunity to go full-circle in character development with Samantha's mom, Grace, but failed to do so. The comment she makes at the end of her last scene really ruined that development arc that was otherwise well done.

Lastly, while the first two-thirds of the book was too long, the last third felt rushed, particularly the ending. We never really find out what happens, how the conflict is ultimately resolved. Even the piece with Nan is left hanging.

So if the beginning had been chopped down some, the post-twist portion expanded, and we'd had the opportunity to see Jase hit rock bottom and bounce back, this would have been a five star book.

( )
  CyndiTefft | Feb 6, 2014 |
I know this might be a bold statement, but this book restored my faith in my enjoyment of YA romance as a genre. For a while now, I've had the feeling that I'm too old to enjoy YA anymore...before reading this book, I found myself connecting with YA characters less and less. The whole *I'm-too-old-for-this* and "that's-not-what-it-was-like-when-I-was-teen" feeling. I guess you'd say I enjoy YA romance that has a timeless feel. Yes, times and technology change, but a good romance should always feel timeless and refreshing, no matter the readers' or the characters' age.

This book definitely has that timeless and refreshing feel.

Samantha Reed is working several jobs and getting ready for college. Her family life is almost non-existent. She doesn't have a dad, her sister is busy with her boyfriend, her mom is a politician running for re-election, and her mom has also just started dating again. Samantha's mother has always told her to keep away from the tacky, shabby large family next door. However, after years of being neighbors, when Samantha finally meets the boy next door, Jase, Samantha finds what she has been looking for: love and a happy family.

In my opinion, this story realistically shows the gradually process of having a crush, truly falling in love, and the struggle to maintain a relationship when life gets rocky. Along with the romance aspect of the story, I also loved Jase's family! They reminded me of a contemporary Weasley clan.

My hat's off to Huntley Fitzpatrick, can't wait for her next book! ( )
  vonze | Feb 6, 2014 |
This was one of the good contemporary YA adults of 2012. It wasn't perfect, but it was entertaining and it worked well toward my need for contemp romance.

Review to come shortly. ( )
  VanyaDrum | Jan 26, 2014 |
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Of course, to Colette Corry.
The words “best friend” will never say enough.
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The Garretts were forbidden from the start.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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When Samantha, the seventeen-year-old daugher of a wealthy, perfectionistic, Republican state senator, falls in love with the boy next door, whose family is large, boisterous, and just making ends meet, she discovers a different way to live, but when her mother is involved in a hit-and-run accident Sam must make some difficult choices.… (more)

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