Monday, October 13, 2014

Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins


Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Review by Lauren

Source: personal copy; all opinions are my own

Official Summary: Hopeless romantic Isla has had a crush on introspective cartoonist Josh since their first year at the School of America in Paris. And after a chance encounter in Manhattan over the summer, romance might be closer than Isla imagined. But as they begin their senior year back in France, Isla and Josh are forced to confront the challenges every young couple must face, including family drama, uncertainty about their college futures, and the very real possibility of being apart.

Review: This is the last book in what I dub the "Anna trilogy" only because Anna and the French Kiss came first. These are all companion novels instead of straight sequels, though I would suggest reading the girl's stories in order (Anna, Lola, and Isla). I think the title of this book is perfect because it's a 'happily ever after' in all different ways. It's for the characters, for the readers, and for the author too, I hope!

Out of these three books, I think Isla is one of my favorites. It's hard to say no to Anna because she was the first, but Isla is definitely above Lola. I love all three girls and their stories, but I think I relate to Isla the most. I know what it's like to be scared of new things. I know what it's like to fall for someone but you can only watch them from afar. Of course, my crushes don't really lead where Isla's does, but if the book followed my life, it would be quiet a dull story indeed!

I also really loved the locations in this book since it spans three different countries. You get NYC, New York; Paris, France; and Barcelona, Spain. These are all places that both Isla and Josh visit together, and we get to journey with them, learning little details that have me dying to travel.

While Isla and the rest of the books might focus on a romance, they are more than that. For Isla, it's
 also about growing up and deciding where she wants to go and who she wants to be. It's about Josh allowing himself to be free of familial expectations, yet also take advantage of his own talents and goals. I love that Josh can draw and that he loves comics. I love that he's smart, yet pretends not to be. These two aren't always easy on each other, but they are meant to be. Just like these books and me were meant to be.

19 comments:

Montana @ The Book Belles said...

I loved the locations in this book, as well! It makes me want to visit all of them :) I think Anna will always be my favorite book in this series, but I did enjoy this one. I thought Isla was a great main character. Amazing review!

Melliane said...

I really need to try this series, I keep hearinggreat things about it and I know I need to buy book 1!

Melanie said...

Isla is your favourite of the 3?! Wow, I have to go and grab this one ASAP then! I'm planning on buying this trilogy in a boxed set, because they just look so gorgeous.

Lovely review, girl! <33

Tracy Terry said...

Family dramas, uncertain futures, wonderful locations and what sounds like memorable characters and yet despite your glowing review this somehow just doesn't appeal to me.

Tracy Terry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Giselle said...

I loved Anna and I really have to read his one as well as Lola! I love how character driven they all seem and I love the setting in this one! I don't travel a lot so I like to do it vicariously though fictional characters >.< Great review, hun!

Emily @ Forever Literary said...

This book made me feel all melty inside, and I'm glad to see you enjoyed it as well! While I did have to suspend a bit of disbelief - their relationship started and progressed a LITTLE too quickly for my taste - I do agree that Isla is the best of the trilogy, mostly because of all the cities. I'm so excited to read Perkins's upcoming horror novel - I predict that it will be even better than her romances.

Kindlemom said...

I really have loved every single book in this trilogy but Anna and this one are my favorite.

Sara @ Forever 17 Books said...

Oooh, a fave of the three? I loved the first two but haven't had a chance to get to my copy of this. Soon, I swear!

Heidi@Rainy Day Ramblings said...

I think this was my favorite of the three as well. I liked that the romance didn't take the whole story to unfold and I enjoyed the bumps along the way. I can''t wait to see what Perkins does next.

cleemckenzie said...

It's always fun to "travel" in a story. She's chosen some great places to take the readers in this book.

Krysten Quiles said...

This sounds good!

Alise said...

Glad you liked this one! All the different settings sound really interesting. I've only read Lola so far but I really liked it. This one seems like a really sweet coming of age story.

Brandi Kosiner said...

I couldn't get into 2nd but loved Anna, so should try this too

Diva Booknerd said...

Completely agree, I'd put Isla before Lola, but for me it was no where near as incredible as Anna. My choice is more so due to the lack of seeing Paris through Isla's story. But then again, I really enjoyed how they both traveled as well. The ending was just beautiful though. I'm hoping to see a novella where readers can experience that 'event' with the characters, that would be a fitting end to the series. Lovely review <3

Tanja - Tanychy said...

It's interesting that mostly people loved this one the most, but I actually loved Lola's story best. I don't mean that this one was bad, actually far from it, but Isla and I are really different. I'm so happy you loved this one so much. Great review, Lauren :)

Zoe N. said...

I haven't read any of the books in this series because I'm not much of a fan of chick lit; but all the glowing reviews I've seen (yours included!) have inspired me to give it a try. Thanks for sharing Lauren and, as always, FANTASTIC review! <3

Candace said...

I still haven't read this one! I've waited so long and now I'm on a ban, or rather, don't have any money for books. I'm dying to read this one though. I LOVE travel in books!

wordyhughes said...

Wonderful review! I completely agree with you that this book will make you want to travel! I had to look up pictures of those buildings they go see in Barcelona. Wow! I want to see them for real!

Lauren @ Wordy Hughes