Published on: June 14th 2012
Published by: Dial Books for New Readers
Series: My Life Next Door #1
Genre: YA Romance
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(summary from Goodreads)
“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, messy, affectionate. And every day from her rooftop perch, Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs up next to her and changes everything.
As the two fall fiercely for each other, stumbling through the awkwardness and awesomeness of first love, Jase’s family embraces Samantha – even as she keeps him a secret from her own. Then something unthinkable happens, and the bottom drops out of Samantha’s world. She’s suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?
A transporting debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another.
.It was about time I got round to reading this book as it has been on my TBR forever! A cute summer read, it was perfect for sitting out in the garden in the sunshine and getting burnt tomato red because I was just too involved in the book to even consider moving!
Stories like this one are the reason I love Young Adult books. No there isn’t a magical words full of broomsticks and magic wands, there is no great rebellion lead by teenage lovers but instead you get a story of first love: clumsy and awkward but pure and true. The kind of story that makes you hold your breath for the first kiss; that make you smile at all the cuteness; that make you ache for them when they are in trouble and fall apart; that make you love them more when they get back together, feeling their love grow with every page, with every word…
“Maybe if I can just sleep for a hundred years, I’ll wake up in a better story.”
Sam is the girl who has been trapped in her mother perfect controlled world for too long. She does what her mother tells her to do, hangs out with people her mother approves of and has no opinion if it isn’t the same as her mothers. Except when it comes to the Garrett family.
Jase Garrett is the guy with the biggest heart. His love for his whole entire family is phenomenal. He doesn’t want to be a burden to his parents and spends a lot of time helping at the family shop and taking care of his siblings. He has his own dreams and works hard for them and he’s just such a nice guy that you really want it to work out for him.
“You have to kiss me,” I find myself saying.
“Yeah.” He leans closer. “I do.”
The contrast between the Reed and Garrett families is a really interesting addition to the story and shows that sometimes the perfect family doesn’t always make the happiest family.
I really LOVED the Garret family. The way that they all stuck together, the older kids helping to parent the younger ones too. There was no anger or resentment at having to take care of them just pure love. Between George and his half nakedness and constant questions, and Poppy with her first words of “boob” and “poop” it was definitely the younger members of the family that won me over!
“Why do all the hot girls want the jocks and the good boys? We losers are the ones that need you.”
And then there was Sam’s family. Wow, I really hated her mum. I would never be able to suffer through having someone control my life like Sam’s mum did with hers. And then there was Clay, her mums new boyfriend. I didn’t like him from the start, there was just something off about him. He was a weird one because he seemed to be on Sam’s side at times, sticking up for her against her mum, but then at the same time he was just weird and I couldn’t get a read on him.
Special mention to Tim as well. For a guy who I didn’t particularly like at the beginning he really stepped it up and became one of my favourites by the end. He says the funniest things and there is a real sense of recovery there and actually giving himself a chance at something better then the life he has ended up with.
“The Garretts were my bedtime story, long before I ever thought I’d be part of the story myself.”
A really nice story of family, and that having a family no matter how messy but full of love is a whole lot better then having a whole lot of money. Also a story of taking chances on the things that you want and standing up for yourself and letting yourself have it. I really enjoyed this book and can definitely see myself reading it many times again.
I would recommend this book to fans of: YA romance, forbidden romance, coming of age romance, awesome bookish families