Monday, August 10, 2015

Title: The Boy Most Likely To
Author: Huntley Fitzpatrick
Series: companion to My Life Next Door
Publisher: Penguin-Dial for Young Readers
Publication Date: August 18, 2015
Source: received for review from publisher via Netgalley
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Audible

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Surprises abound and sparks ignite in the highly anticipated, utterly romantic companion to My Life Next Door.

Tim Mason was The Boy Most Likely To:
- find the liquor cabinet blindfolded
- need a liver transplant
- drive his car into a house

Alice Garrett was The Girl Most Likely To:
- well, not date her little brother’s baggage-burdened best friend, for starters.

For Tim, it wouldn’t be smart to fall for Alice. For Alice, nothing could be scarier than falling for Tim. But Tim has never been known for making the smart choice, and Alice is starting to wonder if the “smart” choice is always the right one. When these two crash into each other, they crash hard.

Then the unexpected consequences of Tim’s wild days come back to shock him. He finds himself in a situation that isn’t all it appears to be, that he never could have predicted . . . but maybe should have.

And Alice is caught in the middle.

Told in Tim’s and Alice’s distinctive, disarming, entirely compelling voices, this return to the world of My Life Next Door is a story about failing first, trying again, and having to decide whether to risk it all once more.

I've been waiting for Tim's story pretty much since I put down My Life Next Door the first time. It was easy to see that his character had such potential and that his appearance in that book was only the beginning of his story. The Boy Most Likely To was not quite what I was expecting, not even a little bit, but in being so unexpected, it far exceeded any preconceived notions I'd previously held.

While My Life Next Door was told only from Sam's perspective, the author goes for a dual narrative in this follow-up. Even though I'd read the synopsis way back when I first discovered that this book would really exist, it still took me by surprise that I was reading not only from Tim's point of view but also Alice's. Especially since the narrative slid so easily between the two characters…no jarring chapter headings with each character's name to show the switch in perspective. And Tim's and Alice's voices are so distinctive that it wasn't necessary. The author handled each character's story beautifully and it just flowed so well.

There's quite a lot I'd like to say about Tim's narrative, but considering it all revolves around a twist, it's best I leave it unsaid. It very nearly broke my heart, though. Tim's put himself through a lot, and he's still recovering from all of that, only to be put through the ringer again. But it's that wonderful Garrett clan that comes to the rescue once more, even though they're still dealing with the events from the end of the first book.

I found this book to be just as lovely and genuine as Huntley Fitzpatrick's previous two books. I love that she doesn't use miscommunication as a plot device but rather has her characters speak openly and frankly to one another. They may be facing some serious life decisions and what-not, but there's no bullshit. Oh, also, she's not afraid to let her characters vent through swearing, especially one Tim Mason. ;)

The romance was pretty slow, which was a big reason this book differed so wildly from my expectations. My Life Next Door was pretty swoony, pretty much from the get-go. And while it's obvious that Tim and Alice have some serious chemistry, they both play it cool until they just can't anymore. Alice, because Tim is younger and is still working on getting his act together and she's got a lot on her plate as it is. Tim would have probably charged in like a bull if he'd known his feelings would have been reciprocated, and if it hadn't been for that big twist and the fact that he's trying to be a better man and do things right.

The Boy Most Likely To is more of a coming-of-age story than a romance, probably the least romance-y of Fitpatrick's novels so far. But it's sweet and endearing and tugs on the ole heartstrings in other ways. I'm glad to have finally gotten Tim's story -- along with Alice's -- and I liked revisiting some old friends along the way. I don't normally love companion novels because they rarely live up to the first book for me -- usually because they focus on some extraneous character I didn't really care about in the first place -- but in this case, I needed this story to be told, and I'm glad of how it turned out.

GIF it to me straight:
That is Tim in a nutshell.


About the Author:

Huntley Fitzpatrick grew up dreamy and distracted in coastal Connecticut. She flourished in a family of bookworms where everyone always had their nose in a book. She kept an exhaustively thorough journal which frightened her boyfriends but has proved very useful in her career as a writer. Her debut contemporary Romance, MY LIFE NEXT DOOR, was published in June of 2012 by Penguin-Dial for Young Readers. Now she laughs with and eavesdrops on her six children who provide her with perspective and material. She is represented by the amazing Christina Hogrebe of the Jane Rotrosen Agency.

Find Huntley:

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Goodreads

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  1. Giveaway is US only, right? :P Great review! I really want to read this one despite the mixed things I hear about it.

  2. I can't remember who Tim is. I might benefit from a re-read before I jump into this one.

  3. I've read mixed reviews but it sounds a little different from the norm - which I like.

    Karen @For What It's Worth


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