By: Huntley Fitzpatrick
Pub. Date: June 14, 2012
Publisher: Dial Books for Young Readers
A gorgeous debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another
“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?
A dreamy summer read, full of characters who stay with you long after the story is over.
Samantha has always been the good girl. She has always done what her mother says and she never causes any trouble. When the Garrett's move in next door, her mother forbids her from talking to them. The Garretts are everything Samantha's family is not. They are loud, messy, and there are so many of them (8 children!), but there is so much love in that family. Samantha listens to her mother, but always watches the family from afar. One day, years after the Garretts first moved in-Samantha talks to Jase Garrett for the first time.
I loved the Garretts. Each and every one of them was interesting. I loved the relationship between all of the brothers and sisters. When Sam first meets them, she instantly feels like part of the family. That is how warm and welcoming they were to her. Jase was my favorite though. He was just such a great person. He took care of his family, and always put his siblings first. I felt bad for him though because he was never able to do anything for himself. All of his free time was spent helping his family, from being the family mechanic to being the babysitter.
The relationship between Sam and Jase was beautifully written. They were so sweet. Even though they fell for each other pretty quickly, it completely felt real to me. I loved that through her relationship with Jase, Sam was able to stick up for herself with her mom, and for the first time in years, she was able to talk honestly with her mother.
Overall, if you have the opportunity to read My Life Next Door, you should! I am so happy that I stuck with it because it was definitely worth it!