24611582The Boy Most Likely To (My Life Next Door #2) by Huntley Fitzpatrick
Release Date: August 18, 2015
Publisher: Dial
Source: ARC provided by publisher (THANKS!)
Rating: starstarstarblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

A surprising, utterly romantic companion to My Life Next Door—great for fans of Sarah Dessen and Jenny Han 

Tim Mason was The Boy Most Likely To find the liquor cabinet blindfolded, need a liver transplant, and 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 novel is for readers of The Spectacular Now, Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, and Paper Towns. – Goodreads

Review:

Ah Tim. Tim from The Boy Next Door who drove me crazy is back. In a short first chapter we learn partly why Tim is the way he is: his father is an impossible asshole. Tim owns the fact that he, himself assisted in the fucking up.

Yep, I’m an alcoholic high school dropout, but check out my backhand! —pg 7, paper ARC

I did enjoy that leftover questions I had at the end of The Boy Next Door were answered in this companion novel. It was interesting and even refreshing, to see Tim and Alice from their point of view, not through the eyes of their neighbor, their friend, their sibling.

We now see how much the Garrett’s depend on Alice, the eldest sister who is very much the mom while their mom is in the hospital with their father after the accident. We now see Tim and his sister Nan, who we only saw from the point of view of her best friend. I even relate to Tim and Nan’s relationship. My brother and my relationship is..strained to put it nicely. In a way, it always has been.

More than one boyfriend has said to me that breaking up meant breaking up with my family too, and that was the hardest. — pg 63, paper ARC

It’s an interesting companion novel because the previous characters are still present, just from a different perspective and while I understand that is what a companion novel is, I still enjoyed this interesting take.

I also enjoyed that this was more than a boy likes girl, girl hates boy, two make out story line. When this story starts, Alice is dating Brad. Brad is nice enough, there is nothing wrong with him per say, he’s just not Alice’s lobster (Friends shout out!)

I’m lying to both of them. Thought I was done with that garbage. — pg 148, paper ARC

Alice knows her family is loud, obnoxious, but it’s also full of love. Things Tim’s not used to. His father shows love by being an asshole, his mother doesn’t really know how to show love and his sister is a teenager. Plus, a fairly big curveball is thrown at him around 30% into the novel, a curveball which I didn’t really enjoyed. It seemed like a convenient curveball and I believe there were other plot devices that could have been used. I also think Alice had enough going on in her life that she shouldn’t have had to deal with said plot device. I actually came close to giving up because I was so annoyed.

Tim works on being a better human being, a better friend, brother, son. But then the plot device comes in (I’m calling it that to not spoil the event) and he starts to take multiple steps backwards.

“It is honestly like the guy makes a profession of messing up. As  if  he  wakes  up  and  the  first  thing  he  does,  before  he  even showers— if  he even showers—is write a punch list of all the many creative and moronic ways he can be more of a disaster.” –-pg 197, paper ARC

While Tim has taken these multiple steps backwards, Alice is dealing with her own problems. She has become the mom of the house while her father is still in the hospital and her mom is, understandably, taking care of her father. This is wearing down on Alice. Alice just wants to be Alice and it’s hard to do that while you’re taking care of a good portion of your brothers and sisters.

“Tell me something, Boy Most Likely To. Why is it you are the biggest sarcastic idiot when you are entirely and deeply in the wrong?” –pg 219, paper ARC

I love that Fitzpatrick writes real fiction. She writes sloppy, messy characters and sloppy messy scenes. From sex scenes to those awkward every day painful moments, it’s why I didn’t quit even when I wanted to. The little moments also made the novel for me. I loved the little moments. I was also surprised by the ending and how much said plot device actually grew on me.

““I was . . . wrong. You were right to call me on it, Tim. I don’t—apologize often. Or well. So . . . So . . . I thought . . . deeds speak louder than words and all that.” “ — pg 246, paper ARC

What also surprised me was how much growth the characters had throughout the novel but at the end, they are also the same characters. Tim still has that asshole in him and Alice still has this tough bit. They’re just softer and a bit more human to each other now.

“She called you on your bullshit and you ditched her. It’s not exactly an original story. I’ve starred in it a billion times.” — pg 375, paper ARC