Release Date: June 14, 2012
Goodreads | Amazon UK | Amazon | The Book Depository
“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?
My Life Next Door is the perfect contemporary read with a romance that will have girls helplessly swooning. I've been eyeing this book for MONTHS and I am not the slightest disappointed or let down by the story or the characters. I'm pretty sure this book will stay with me for a very, very long time.
Samantha Reed is a good girl who always follows her mother's rules and regulations, unlike her sister who started rebelling since she was a teenager. Her mother is a politician who doesn't always have time for Samantha, so she kills time by sitting at her window watching her neighbors, the Garretts, who have God knows how many children. On top of the big family, they are not organised at all; their lawn is never mowed, toys thrown all over the place and Samantha's mother does not approve. But she watches them anyway, like she has always been doing for years; wishing she was part of such a loving family. One evening and Samantha's life is tipped upside down, when Jase Garret climbs up her terrace. And before she knows it, they are falling in love and she is part of the family. But you can never be happy for too long, right? A devastating situation occurs and Samantha has to decide which perfect family to betray...
I ate this book all up and I couldn't have loved it more. I adored each and every member of the Garrett family, and I actually found myself longing to be part of such a caring and loving family. They made me laugh, smile and they brought a tear to my eye. Fitzpatrick writes effortlessly about a family who are not perfect yet always have love to keep them together.
The romance in this book sticks out for me; it's sweet, it's realistic, and it's everything a teenage girl in this day and age craves. Jase Garret may possibly be my favourite guy in YA contemporary. I mean, apart from being good looking and absolutely drool-worthy, he has a beautiful personality. He gets embarrassed, he gets over-protective, he works hard, he cares about his siblings, he is sweet, and he is 100% swoon worthy. Throughout the ENTIRE book I was thinking, "I WANT A JASE IN MY LIFE!!" and "Damn, Samantha is so lucky, maybe we should just swap places?"
To ruin the happiness of the book, a horrible event is thrown in at Samantha and Jase's highest point. It puts their relationship through the ultimate test and you will wonder how on earth are they going to make it out the other side. But Fitzpatrick offers a satisfying ending that will leave you mourning for a sequel and another visit into the Garrett's house.
I would rave about this book all day if you asked me to because I absolutely loved it and it went over and way beyond my expectations. If you're looking for an incredible contemporary filled with romance, mystery and a whole load of I-wish-that-were-me situations then pick up My Life Next Door right now. I can't wait to read more of the author's future works, but for now... Huntley Fitzpatrick, I love you... Can we have an epilogue, please?