Another RITA nominee: My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

I covered the Young Adult nominees for the 2013 RITA Awards the other day, but closer inspection of the list has me even more excited.

Why? Because I just noticed Huntley Fitzpatrick’s wonderful, wonderful YA romance, My Life Next Door is a finalist in the Best First Book category.

I don’t know all the ins and outs of the competition rules, but I find it astonishing to not see the book also listed in the YA category. I really think it could win. I read YA all the time, but this one was a book that stood out so strongly to me I think I can still quote it, months after reading. 🙂

Lumping My Life Next Door in with many other YA romances is a little disingenuous as it has so much going on. It has the complexity of a quality romance for adult readers, dealing with some political and social issues rather than relying entirely on ‘he’s so hot, she’s so hot’ to build the story. Secondary characters are as strong as the two leads, and there’s none of the slut shaming and general misogyny that dominates the genre these days.

In addition to that, the romance is realistic for the characters’ ages.

This is a really, really wonderful book, and I’d love to see it win a RITA this year!

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

“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 trellis and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love and stumble through the awkwardness and awesomeness of first romance, Jase’s family makes Samantha one of their own—even as she keeps him a secret from her disapproving mother and critical best friend. Then the unthinkable happens, and the bottom drops out of Samantha’s world. She’s suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

A debut novel about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another.


Posted on 02/04/2013, in Books, Young Adult Fiction, Young Adult Romance and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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