Review: The Boy Next Door by Annabelle Costa

Review: The Boy Next Door by Annabelle CostaThe Boy Next Door by Annabelle Costa

Genres: Contemporary Romance
on December 11, 2012
Pages: 220
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four-half-stars  

This was one of those that I found both endearing and frustrating all rolled into one.  It was a toss up at times whether I was going to give up on Tasha or see it through with her.  She’s the main character and the narrator so she either makes or breaks the story.  In the end, I decided that she ‘made’ the story though the long suffering and faithful Jason gets my vote too.

There were times that I wasn’t all that fond of the heroine, but at the same time I like the way the author wrote her.  What do I mean by that?  Tasha is the real deal and not your typical heroine of romance.  She’s a quirky mixed up ‘blind to what’s in front of her all along’ sort of girl.  Tasha was the girl with the good looks and ‘girls just wanna have fun’ attitude that all the guys adored from the moment she hit puberty.  She goes through phases in her life and makes choices that leave her at a loss.  All along, she’s had her best friend Jason to fall back on and to a certain extent she is oblivious to Jason.  She finds him good looking, sexy, fun, the guy she can be herself around, but for some reason she can’t see him as more than best friend material even though no woman is good enough for him.

Jason is the boy next door that became Tasha’s best friend when they were eight.  He’s a quadriplegic who has a great outlook on life and gets along even better than fine.  He’s a steady, quiet sort that can still appreciate the exotic fun loving Tasha. His academic prowess gets him through high school with honors and into Yale.  He enters the world of finance and banking where he has a successful job and even a steady girlfriend, but all along he is there for Tasha.

The problem I had with Tasha isn’t just because she’s oblivious.  Hey, we’ve all missed something right under our nose at one time or other.  My problem was that she seemed almost willfully oblivious because other people told her about Jason’s feelings for her and her own reactions to whenever he gets serious with other girls should have clued her in, but she denies it and won’t even consider it.  I wasn’t happy that she didn’t look on Jason as boyfriend material because of her own issues with appearance, but yet I appreciated the honesty of her character in the sense that real people do have flaws, denial and blind spots.

And Jason couldn’t really be blamed for not speaking up over the years because she’d already made it clear to him where his place was in her life.  He chose to be friend just so he could have something with her.

Though Jason is upbeat and is well-centered, his character is also written in such a way that I got a feeling for what the life of a man who is a paraplegic struggles with.

I found in the end that I could really appreciate this realistic, yet humorous tale of a woman who goes through a lot to see the treasure that’s been under her nose all along.

I recommend this for lovers of contemporary romance and chick-lit.

 

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.