Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
Posted by Caitie F on August 14, 2014
Summary from pub:
From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. But as they begin their senior year in France, Isla and Josh are quickly forced to confront the heartbreaking reality that happily-ever-afters aren’t always forever.
Their romantic journey is skillfully intertwined with those of beloved couples Anna and Étienne and Lola and Cricket, whose paths are destined to collide in a sweeping finale certain to please fans old and new
I loved Anna. I adored Lola. I think Isla is just incredible. And, like the others she is sometimes frustrating and I just want her to realize how awesome she really is. But she is a teenager and I felt a lot of the things she felt as a teenager. She is so smart and caring, but insecure and imperfect just like all of us
Isla’s friendship with Kurt was fantastic. He has high-functioning autism. Sometimes he doesn’t get sarcasm and he gets really excited about certain things. He is also an incredible friend and he and Isla watch out for each other.
I adored the characterization of Josh. I really like how readers gradually get to know him. At first, the reader just sees him as Isla does, good looking, talented, and mysterious, but not a full person. Reading her thoughts about Josh reminded me of how it felt to have a high school crush. Perkins really got that right. As readers get to know Josh, they will see he is a full and completed character and Isla needed to see him a little more complexly to really get who he was.
The relationship felt really realistic. We mainly got to see the infatuation stage, then things happened and everything started falling apart due to so many insecurities. Everyone feels insecure, but at that age, it is even more. The whole course of their relationship was realistic, but a little more romantic than what most of us have. But we don’t get to live at a Parisian boarding school.
This is a really good book and the end made me so freaking happy. Stephanie Perkins knows how to write fantastic characters and wonderful romances.