It’s Not Summer: My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

“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.

Source: GoodReads

I sort of read this book out of season.

It is the perfect beach read.  It just has that lazy summer day feel about it.  That didn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it reading it Thanksgiving weekend, but it was sort of wearing white after Labor Day.

Major faux pas.

Oh, well, I can deal….

Overall, My Life Next Door was a well written contemporary which while romantic had other plots and characters going on in it that made it enjoyable.

It’s not a fluffy contemporary, per say.  There are some serious overtones and undertones to it.  So, instead of saying its a contemporary in the vein of Meg Cabot or Stephanie Perkins, I’d say it’s more like a Sarah Dessen book.

Not that that’s a bad thing.  It’s just something that sort of comes off unexpected if you look at that cover.

In fact, I love that things in this book are, well, sort of complicated.  And that the supporting characters have back stories of their own too.

What I didn’t love was that there were parts of the book that were just plain out melodrama.

To be fair, the melodrama sort of worked and that was something since it hardly ever works.  But it did get a little eye rolling at times.  The whole last third could’ve been resolved within twenty pages had Sam had any sort of guts.  As for the resolution we got, it was satisfying enough, but I have to say I wanted more.

However, the character development made up for any fallacies in the plot.  I really enjoyed both of the leads-Jase and Sam-but what I liked even more was the side character.  In particular, Tim.

When I started reading the book I really despised this character, but he really grew on me.  I think when you’re able to do that with side characters especially, it really says something about you as an author.

So, bravo Fitzpatrick.

A lot of other side characters besides Tim were developed as well.  Some better than others.

One character that I sort of am a bit lukewarm about is Clay.

Mainly, because he was such a POS.  I have sort of mixed vibes about it.  On one hand I love how despicable he is, but on another I wanted there to be shades of him that showed he wasn’t such a horrible person.

Once again, it’s sort of a fine line.  And I think Fitzpatrick is on the edge of said line.

This is overall a very entertaining and enjoyable book, faults included.  However, I don’t think it’s a perfect fall read by any means.

Summer time though…

Overall Rating: B+.  It’s a cute book that discusses some serious issues.



One thought on “It’s Not Summer: My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

  1. Pingback: Bookish Highlights of the Year: Where I go Over a Year in Books | Howdy YAL!

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