Lola Nolan is a budding costume designer, and for her, the more outrageous, sparkly, and fun the outfit, the better. And everything is pretty perfect in her life (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the neighborhood. When Cricket, a gifted inventor, steps out from his twin sister's shadow and back into Lola's life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.
In 2015, I picked up the book Anna and the French Kiss and to my surprise I enjoyed it very much. Author Stephanie Perkins had written two more books in this companion series, so I decided I wanted to read the other two as well, starting with number two Lola and the Boy Next Door. One not so cool thing about it being a companion novel was that there would be different characters. Just after I had fallen in love with the characters from the previous book. View Spoiler »Though Anna ánd St. Clair both appear in this book with fairly large roles. « Hide Spoiler
Lola is about an aspiring costume designer (named Lola of course) who lives in San Francisco with her two dads. She has an amazing boyfriend, wears a different outfit (complete with wig and accesoires) every day and nothing can ruin all of that. Until she finds out the Bell family is moving back into the house next to theirs.
As much as I enjoyed Anna, I didn’t like this second book that much. Partly because of the new main characters, and partly because Lola was just so different from Anna. View Spoiler »And I am going to admit it, the main storyline felt like a repeat of Anna; with one already being in a relationship (though this time it was the main character instead of the love interest) and then them still flirting with each other. The girl/boyfriend was really unlikable in both cases (I didn’t like St. Clair’s girlfriend, and I hated Max) and yeah, I don’t know I just felt like I had already read this story). « Hide Spoiler What also didn’t help was that I already knew how this book would end, because it had taken me so long to actually pick up these books, that I had already been spoiled via Goodreads. *grumbles*
It was a really nice story though, I really enjoyed the descriptions of Lola’s outfits, but it pained me to see how often she ‘janks’ off her wigs. Wigs are delicate, and you do not just jank off a wig when you’re done with it. I am also very confused how she put on her wigs without using a wigcap and a thousand bobby pins. The way Lola does it is exactly how it happens in movies, the girl takes off her wig without trouble and has beautifully styled hair underneath (except Lola didn’t have that last part, but still). Are you really making a fuzz about the wigs? Yes, yes I am.
Like I said, I had already sort of been spoiled by the ending, so all the interaction between Lola and Cricket didn’t feel as genuine to me as it may have felt if I had gone into these books ‘blind’. I did like Cricket much much more than Max, to be honest, even though Cricket did do some things that made me go ‘wait what?’.
The writing was great, as usual, I really enjoy Stephanie’s writing in general. I will definitely be picking up Isla and the Happily Ever After, and I am very much looking foward to her upcoming horror novel! If you love contemporary romance novels and you haven’t read this series yet, do it! But start with Anna and the French Kiss, because even though they are companion novels, they are connected in a way.