Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wednesday Reads: My Life Next Door

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick, contemporary YA. A beautiful, stunning debut about love, family, betrayal, and staying true to yourself.

“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? 
First Line: "The Garretts were forbidden from the start." Gets straight to the point and intrigues the reader. But what I really love is the whole first page. Because the first page is actually a flashback of sorts, some backstory. And what do we tell writers to never do? LOL But this works. And if you're contemplating breaking the rules, know what you're doing, do it well, and don't linger too long on it. The thing that really clinches this scene for me is Samantha's mother. She's kind of a bitch, and very judgmental. Everyone knows someone like that.

Brownie Points: Samantha. I love her. She's an interesting character with a lot of things going on in her life--she has multiple jobs (overachiever much?) and each job has its own hideous uniform. She's able to balance everything though, which we love her for. Until the point she can no longer balance the jobs, the family, the boyfriend, etc. And we love her even more for it!

Recommendation: Obviously, I'm going to recommend that everyone read it. But especially if you love a character-rich contemporary YA ala Sarah Dessen or Stephanie Perkins.

Would I represent it? I'm drooling with the idea of working with something so immensely awesome.

Happy reading!


Elizabeth Prats said...

Ahh this one has been on my to-be-read list for quite some time now! Can't wait to get to it :D

kandie said...

I agree about the first line of the chapter. I'm already adding it to my TBR list. Great suggestion for a read. Look forward to sharing it with my nieces.

Nicole McLaughlin said...

Contemporary YA....LOVE IT! This has been on my TBR, it may need to be bumped up.