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December 17, 2012

Review: My Life Next Door by Huntely Fitzpatrick

My Life Next Door
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.

Never in my life have a yearned more for a cute next door neighbor than when I was reading My Life Next Door. There were moments where I would just put the book down and think of the possibilities if I had my real life Jase next door.

"Five boys and three girls by the time I turned seventeen. Joel, Alice, Jase, Andy, Duff, Harry, George, and Patsy."

There are so many characters in this novel, just next door to Samantha there's a family of TEN! I thought that there would be moments where I would have to scrutinize my brain for who was who but Huntley does an amazing job in creating all unique characters.  Samantha and Jase couldn't be more different. Having lived next door all their lives, they've never spoken to each other and each one has misconceptions of the other one. Samantha is the senators daughter and comes off as strict and a bit uptight but she's also fun and loving. Jase seems to be the mature, older guy with plenty of experience in everything, but he has those vulnerable moments in him too. My favorite I have to say was George. He was the adorable little brother everyone wishes they had. Every time he was in the book you knew there was going to be a laugh out loud moment.

“I like eggs and bacon," George tells me. "But" - his face clouds - "do you know that bacon is" - tears leap to his eyes - "Wilbur?” 
My Life Next Door takes you through all the emotions on the spectrum. There were moments where I was scared for Samantha or nervous for Jase, there were moments of anger at some of the characters but there were definitely moments where I read a phrase and burst out laughing. I was not expecting the twist in the middle of the novel but it was well done and brought even more emotion into the novel.

“Is Jase already going to marry you?" [...] George backs out of the room, but not before saying, "His bed's really comfortable. And he never pees in it."
I have been on a contemporary kick lately and this has reinforced it. Even though this would be a great book to read during the summer, it's still fantastic anytime of the year you read it. I highly recommend this book for anyone who wants something adorable but something that also tackles issues.



  1. *sniff sniff* I should read this again. I miss it. :(

    I totally loved Jase and Samantha's characters! They were totally awesome, and I couldn't have loved them any more. I also loved the big family element. Who else writes YA novels with families that have eight kids? I know several people with six or seven kids, so I was like, "Heck YES!"

    Terrific review, Audris.

    Megan@The Book Babe

  2. Glad you liked this one ! I've been wanting to read it. I love the cover.

  3. I only had one little glitch problem with the story, but it was minimal compared to my overall love for the book as a whole.

    Did you know she's announced there will be another book? I made noises only dolphins could hear. Then saw it wasn't out until 2014...and cried a little.