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StorySnoops Children's Book Reviews | Isla and the Happily Ever After | Stephanie Perkins
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Isla and the Happily Ever After
by Stephanie Perkins
PUBL. RECOMMENDED AGE: 14 and up
LEXILE READING LEVEL: HL570L {what is this?}
PUBLISHER: Dutton Books for Young Readers
YEAR PUBLISHED: 2014
NO. PAGES: 352
GENRE{S}: Realistic Fiction, Romance
MAIN CHARACTER GENDER: Female
PREQUEL: Lola and the Boy Next Door
ISBN: 0525425632
READ & REVIEWED BY: Eden - StorySnoop


The Story
Isla and the Happily Ever After—Book Review

From the publisher: 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.
The Scoop
Isla and the Happily Ever After—Book Review
{spoiler alert}

The title Isla and the Happily Ever After is fitting for this third and final companion to Stephanie Perkins' romance-themed books Anna and the French Kiss and Lola and the Boy Next Door. As with the other titles, the books have characters that overlap, but do not need to be read together. Isla is set back in Paris, where both protagonists are high school seniors at an American boarding school. While the ending is predictable from the title, there would be no story without some conflict on the way to "Happily Ever After." In this case, Isla and Josh fall into an intense relationship very quickly, with very little solid friendship base to sustain them when things get rough, which they quickly do. There is a pretty significant "hooky" incident (an illicit weekend in another major European city) resulting in one character being expelled and thus sent back to the US; and for the other character, there is an overwhelming battle trying to find an identity and sense of self. Throw in a "wrong side of the tracks" storyline where Josh can't introduce Isla to his snooty politician parents because she isn't what they consider suitable, and you have all the makings of a good page-turner. While this book doesn't have nearly as much depth to its characters and settings as the others in the trio, teen readers will definitely relate to Isla's battle to figure out who she is and what she stands for, and to Josh's desire to simultaneously stand up to and break away from his parents. Of the three books, Isla has the most in terms of sex and language. Two significant turning points in Josh and Isla's relationship are marked with heavy sexual encounters, though both are described somewhat metaphorically. Language includes sh-t, bi-ch, a-s, f--k. All told, teen fans of Anna and Lola will be delighted to ride this romance roller coaster one final time, knowing the likelihood of the main characters ending up together is quite high.
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Isla and the Happily Ever After—Book Review

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