Lola and the Boy Next Door

Lola and the Boy Next Door - Stephanie Perkins **One tiny spoiler is hidden within the text. Otherwise, safe to read**3.5 Stars, but I'm rounding up, because...*sigh* you know.So here's the thing. I'm pretty sure I sabotaged my reading of this book. It was one of those things where you have it SO WORKED UP in your mind, that inevitably, you're let down.It wasn't that I didn't like Lola, because I totally did. But I expected to fall all over myself in love with it like I did Anna. And that, I totally did not.Let's talk about what I loved about the book: I love Perkins' storytelling ability, and that hasn't changed with Lola's book. Her style is still very much there, and that was refreshing to see. Also, the incredibly unique and different characters she came up with - I mean, really, a girl who dresses in costume every day of her life? Now that is creative. I also loved that Lola had two gay men as parents, since I have yet to read about that in a YA novel. The BFF was...okay. I didn't love her, but she wasn't really explored enough to love or hate. Max, I actually liked at the beginning, but that didn't last long. I also enjoyed Cricket...I didn't swoon all over him like I did Etienne, though. Don't get me wrong - Cricket had his own moments of swoon, but they just weren't for me. Really the only thing that I didn't love about the book, and what subsequently caused me to not enjoy the book as I hoped I would was Lola's character. She was...well, a liar. There are no two ways about it. She lied her pants off any chance she got. And, yeah, yeah, yeah, but she's only seventeen! That argument doesn't work for me. Age has nothing to do with that in my book. At the point in time when she is confronted by Max and lies through her teeth , she completely lost any iota of love I had for her. Honestly, what I liked most about this book? The tiny glimpses of Anna and Etienne that we got. The one (ONE!) time I laughed in this book was during one of Anna's lines. That was one of the main things I loved about Perkins' first book - I laughed so much. I enjoyed myself in reading it; it was funny and cute and swoony and...I got it. I got Anna. I did not get Lola. In the end, I think that within these three books Perkins is writing, you will inevitably gravitate toward one set of characters more than the others. Mine are Anna and Etienne. And, I'm betting (hoping) the final book makes it up there a little closer to those two, as well.