February 20, 2015

My Thoughts: Isla and the Hapily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

4 chocolate chocolate chip cookies.

Cover Love:  I liked the other two covers really well (Anna and the French kiss and Lola and the Boy Next Door) and was kind of bummed they changed all three covers before this one came out.  But I do like this one.

Why I Wanted to Read This:
I adored Lola and the Boy Next Door, Cricket was my favorite.  So, I checked this one out from my public library to see if it would be as good.  (I had not read Anna and the French Kiss at the time).  Here is the synopsis from GoodReads:
Hopeless romantic Isla has had a crush on introspective cartoonist Josh since their first year at the School of America in Paris. And after a chance encounter in Manhattan over the summer, romance might be closer than Isla imagined. But as they begin their senior year back in France, Isla and Josh are forced to confront the challenges every young couple must face, including family drama, uncertainty about their college futures, and the very real possibility of being apart.
Romance?: Yes. Lots.

My Thoughts:
I have to say that I think I like YA romances a little better when the characters get together early on in the book so the book focuses more on them working through issues than simply getting together.  Isla and Josh do get together early on in the book, so we get to see a lot of them working through problems and misunderstandings and finding a way to be together.

I liked that Isla had a good relationship with her parents and that Josh's parents were actually supportive, in their own way.  They were trying, he just made it pretty hard.

Josh did not become my book boyfriend, even though I did adore him.  I liked how he gave himself over to Isla and the relationship and was willing to try being together even when she was not, but there was just a little bit of desperation to him that I didn't love.  And I did adore Isla, but get so tired of those girls that give up their relationship because of problems that don't exist.

There was one quote that this book had in it that I would like to give to any teen struggling in high school:

"For a certain type of person, high school will always be brutal," the head says.  "The best advice I can give you is to figure out what comes next and work toward that."

This is just brilliant and I wish more kids could see beyond the trees and look forward.  They get so caught up in the high school-ness of high school that they forget their WHOLE LIFE is ahead of them.  I loved high school.  I don't look back with regret, but I have also loved every day since high school more and more.  For kids who are having a hard time they need to look forward.

I do like how Josh took this advice to heart and knew exactly what he wanted and worked toward getting there.  But it was also ok for Isla to not know.  How can you really plan for what you want to do for the rest of their life at 18?!

I really did like the relationship between Josh and Isla and hope they make it through the hard times.  I know they are young, but there is something to be said about becoming adults together and being able to work through things in a mature way.

To Sum Up:  It might be a little mature for my library, but the romantics in all of us girls would be happy to fall in love with Josh and Isla!

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