I can't believe I'm saying this but I used to think I liked Lola more than Anna (books, not the characters) and after rereading them both, I have to say that I like Anna better. Lola is still a strong book and I enjoyed it very much after a second reading but I feel more attached to Anna. And yes, I realize that books shouldn't be compared to one another, especially when they're companions but I found myself sad whenever the scenes with Anna and St. Clair ended. Still a good reread, a solid 5 stars, and one of my favorites.
Ah, the companion novel to Anna and the French Kiss.
Do you like chick-lit? Do you not like chick-lit? Really, your answers here don't matter because I can pretty much guarantee that you will like this book. I mean, what's not to like? I absolutely adore Stephanie Perkins' writing style and her characters. If you couldn't tell, I'm making a gushing face right now.
Contemporary YA used to be something that I shied away from because I didn't think that a "believable" story could be nearly as good as a fantasy one. Let me tell you, I was wrong about that. While reading Lola and the Boy Next Door I felt myself get swept away into the story of Lola and San Fran. She reminded me a lot of Anna in that I really like her but she's different enough that I don't feel like Stephanie Perkins made the same character and just put a different name on her. Anna and Lola are two very different girls. And can I tell you how excited I was to see Ms. Anna and St. Clair show up in this book?! :)
Of course, I can't write a review without talking about Cricket Bell. Perfect, perfect Cricket Bell. He is making a run for my dream boy - kicking Sam Roth from Shiver off the top spot. I loved everything about Cricket Bell - from his plaid shirts and striped pants (see cover for example) to his dorky/geekiness (hello, engineering!).
Okay - with all my gushing I only have one little itty bitty thing that bugged me during the book and that is that Lola mentions that Caliope throws extra stuff into her Short Program (Caliope is a figure skater) for extra points. The Short Program has eight required elements and so you while you can add other things than those eight, you can't get extra points for them. You can do that in the Long Program though. Womp Womp - I know..I'm a nit-picking party-pooper. But that is a technicality that can be easily overlooked.
But seriously people - when this book comes out..it is definitely worth buying. Heck, just writing this review makes me want to go read it again. AND I've already pre-ordered it.
If you're looking for a cute, summer read or a present for your sister/girlfriend/whoever, this book (and Anna and the French Kiss) is a guaranteed winner.