Monday, October 9, 2017

Giveaway: A Short History of the Girl Next Door - Jared Reck

A Short History of the Girl Next Door
Jared Reck
Series: n/a
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
The unrequited love of the girl next door is the centerpiece of this fiercely funny, yet heart-breaking debut novel.

Fifteen-year-old Matt Wainwright is in turmoil. He can’t tell his lifelong best friend, Tabby, how he really feels about her; his promising basketball skills are being overshadowed by his attitude on the court, and the only place he feels normal is in English class, where he can express his inner thoughts in quirky poems and essays. Matt is desperately hoping that Tabby will reciprocate his feelings; but then Tabby starts dating Liam Branson, senior basketball star and all-around great guy. Losing Tabby to Branson is bad enough; but, as Matt soon discovers, he’s close to losing everything that matters most to him.

Humorous and heart-wrenching, A Short History of the Girl Next Door is perfect for readers who fell in love with All the Bright Places' Finch or Stargirl’s Leo.
I finished this book back in September, but I still don't think I will be able to properly articulate how wonderful and painful this book was. This book was such a gut punch, I actually suggested that the book was written by Jared WReck, because he wrecked my heart! My feelings about this book in a gif:

This ARC had an introductory letter written by an editor from Knopf, and she dead on nailed my reactions during this book when she said, "I became a puddle - wiping away tears of laughter on my subway commute, and weeping into my mug of tea at the office as I read the final pages." It was a very emotional read for me, but it was funny and beautiful too.

Seriously, take a look at my updates:

I would like to start with Matt, because this was his story to tell. I loved Matt. He was such a guy, but he would also play Candy Land with his little brother, while doing voices for all the characters. His voice was authentic and real to me, and his emotions were, at times, quite raw. He made me laugh, and he broke my heart. I liked that he loved so fiercely, and could recognize when he might have wrong. As Tabby's relationship with Branson grew, I could feel Matt's heartache and pain through the pages as he counting down to his friendship with Tabby changing forever. I just wanted to give him the biggest, longest hug I could.

Matt and Tabby shared such a long history. She may not have been a blood-related member of his family, but she was theirs. I thought it was such a special touch that so many of their childhood memories are shared with us. From their first sleepover to when Matt first fell for Tabby. It just amplified how painful the changes in their friendship were, but also solidified how special their friendship was.

Another really special thing about this book was Matt's family. From his mom, the "arts-and-crafts Jedi" to his big hearted grandfather, I adored just about every interaction he had with them. The love they felt for each other was so obvious, and so was the pain they felt for Matt as he was dealing with his out of control emotions. There was this part in the book, where Matt was spending time with his grandparents, an intervention of sorts, and the conversations they shared were so heartfelt and lovely. I was happy Matt had them to help him sort himself out.

One of my favorite parts was when Matt was trying to tell Tabby how special she was to him. He talks about sorting his candy after trick-or-treating. How there was a clear hierarchy, where candy bars ranked the highest, and raisins were the lowest. However, Nerds were outside the hierarchy, because their love for Nerds was so vast and no other candy could quite measure up to the greatness that was Nerds. He goes on to say:

"You're the Nerds, Tabby."
Yeah, I sort of sobbed after that. Terribly sweet.

This book was an emotional rollercoaster. I still cry when I talk about it, so I was obviously deeply affected by the story of first love, first heartbreak, love, and loss. I found this to be a solid debut and I look forward to reading more stories from Reck.

**I would like to thank the publisher for the advanced copy of this book. Quotes are from an ARC and may change upon publication.


Because I want to share the heartbreak, I am raffling off an ARC of this wonderful book. All you have to do to enter is fill out the Rafflecopter below. The giveaway is open US only, unless you are willing to pay the shipping, and is open through October 30th. You must be 13 or older to enter or have a parent enter for you. The winner will be selected shortly after and will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is selected.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Do you have a candy hierarchy?
Let us know in the comments!


  1. It looks like the author hit on a large amount of emotions. This book looks great I will need to add it to my TBR list. Thank you for the giveaway too!

    1. I cried again last night when I proofed my review. They nailed it by bam dropping ATBP for this one 😭

  2. I love a book with all the feels!! This one wasn't on my radar but definitely being added now. Great review!!

    1. So. Many. Feels. I promise. You will laugh, your heart will soar, and your heart will break, but in a beautiful way.

  3. I hadn't heard of this book before, but you definitely convinced me I need to read it. I LOVE books that break my emotions!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    1. This book! I'm still crying. 😭 The family and friendship elements were so wonderful. It is an emotional read, but worth all the tears in my opinion.

  4. This sounds like such an adorable and sweet read. I like a good story with a bit of unrequited love. A little agony is good sometimes when it comes to love stories. Thank you for the giveaway!

    1. It is sweet and touching, but heartbreaking too. I really loved it.

  5. Omigosh, I love the giveaway photos with it. It hits me so hard in the feels all over again. Love it! And very smart to share the heartbreak. ;)

    1. I was actually telling my co-blogger all about this book, as she said she would never read it, and I SWEAR! I saw her eyes get a little damp. I wish I had had some actual props, but I had to include those things, because they were such great parts of the story for me,