Thursday, January 8, 2015

Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Publisher: Dutton 
Release Date: August 14th, 2014
Source: Bought (thanks Book Depository!)

Synopsis: From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. But as they begin their senior year in France, Isla and Josh are quickly forced to confront the heartbreaking reality that happily-ever-afters aren’t always forever.

Their romantic journey is skillfully intertwined with those of beloved couples Anna and Étienne and Lola and Cricket, whose paths are destined to collide in a sweeping finale certain to please fans old and new.

Review: Omg omg omg omg so much love for this book. I can't keep it in.  Can't conceal, can't NOT FEEL IT WAS SO GOOD LET IT GOOOOO OUT INTO THIS WORLD SO THAT EVERYONE CAN READ IT.  

I'm going to just say it outright: I loved Isla, I loved Josh, I loved them TOGETHER and how their relationship progressed once the shininess of it wore off and they realized, oh gosh now where do we go from here?  

I instantly clicked with Isla's character: she's shy, she's not always confident in herself and she longs for adventure but settles with those that she reads about in her books. When she doesn't over think things, Isla's really awesome. I know some readers have had issues with how Isla isn't as defined a character as Anna or Lola but I found it more realistic that Isla doesn't know what she wants to do with her future yet. So many people are in those shoes (even in their 30s, 40s). Josh's character was also a delight to get to know; I didn't have a great grasp of him when I first read Anna but holy crap in this installment his character is so fleshed out that reading about him and how he and Isla fall in was quite magical. Even the parts that hurt to read. x.x I also loved that we as readers can finally know what Josh is toting around in his sketchbook. I loved how his character uses art to understand himself and the world around him.

I was also pleased to see that in Isla there's some sex positivity going on! I was happy to see Isla having frank discussions with Josh about their past relationships. Isla might be shy but being shy is not synonymous with being uncertain. Girlfriend knew what she wanted and she went for it! *claps* Also, the fact that these two worry about each other and ask for each other's consent..? In every aspect of their relationship...?
Can't resist, I'm sorry. JUST SO MUCH AWWW.
One more thing I'd like to mention is Kurt, Isla's best guy friend. I'm no expert in determining whether Kurt's character represents an accurate portrayal of someone who has Asperger's but I am happy to see that a character like Kurt appears in Isla.  He isn't defined by Asperger's but instead was Kurt, a guy who happens to have Asperger's. And loves maps. And is a great friend to Isla. Also hallelujah for his and Isla's purely platonic friendship. Can we have more of these friendships alongside the adorbs romances out there?

Final Verdict: I may need to reread Anna and Lola but I think that for right now Isla's story is my favorite out of all three. Stephanie Perkins, in my opinion, is one of those YA authors that *really* captures what it's like to have the butterflies for someone. Whenever I read Anna, Lola or Isla, I truly fall into her characters' emotions and feel their grief, pain, exuberance, etc. Isla and the Happily Ever After is officially out now and if you haven't read it yet, what are you waiting for?

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                                    In a nutshell:

Happy, fluffy feelings!!! I haz them for dis book. 

As for this being the last book in this sort of-series: 

Thank you Stephanie Perkins. You've created some of my favorite characters and I can't wait to read your future work(s). :)

Note: None of these GIFs are mine. All were taken from the internetz. 


  1. Great review! I have Anna sitting on my TBR pile. I really need to get around to picking-up this series.

    1. You really do!!! I love these books a lot :)

  2. It was a great review, Sandy!
    I particularly loved the use of Sakura gifs!!!

    1. Thanks Alex! I was tempted to use all Sakura gifs but I had found the other two before I had even finished writing my review and I knew I had to use them hehe.

  3. I still need to read Isla. I'm glad you loved it! And YES to characters who haven't quite figured out exactly what they want to do with their life. I can relate, lol.

    1. I think so many people can relate! Life is a never ending journey to find out what works and what doesn't. Oh please do whenever you get the chance!

  4. Just finished this one not too long ago in the middle of the night and yessss. SO MANY FEELINGS!! I loved Isla too and that she didn't know what she wanted to do with her life. I think this one was also my favourite of Stephanie's and I can't wait to read what she writes next!!