Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Series: Anna and the French Kiss #3

isla and the happily ever after -stephanie perkinsLove ignites in the City That Never Sleeps, but can it last?

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.

Featuring cameos from fan-favorites Anna, Étienne, Lola, and Cricket, this sweet and sexy story of true love—set against the stunning backdrops of New York City, Paris, and Barcelona—is a swoonworthy conclusion to Stephanie Perkins’s beloved series.

5 Drink Me Potions

Where should I start? There is just so many things to say about this book.

I guess I’ll just have to keep it sweet and simple.

Isla and the Happily Ever After was the romance book I’ve been waiting for. Where its predecessor Anna and the French Kiss was frustrating with its protagonists struggling to decide who to be with, and the other predecessor Lola and the Boy Next Door was extremely slow with its romantic chemistry, Isla and Josh made the best pair of love-torn protagonists I have yet to read.

It starts off right where you may have imagined it. You guessed it. Isla pining away for Josh, as she’s done for the last 3 years of high school. They’re seniors now and she REALLY needs to make her move. Girl, you should’ve done this ages ago, like pre-Rashmi (Josh’s ex).

Anyway, Isla was a nice, albeit a little similar to other protagonist voices I’ve read. She’s shy but sweet. She can be sassy, but she doesn’t make new friends as easily. However, as the story progresses, she gets bolder in her actions while still maintaining a bit of her old shy self in there too. Josh, on the other hand, is….I don’t have the proper adjective to describe him. I really got to know him through this book, another aspect of him that wasn’t clearly there in Anna and the French Kiss. Yes, he’s an artist and he’s drawing a graphic memoir of himself. I find that darn cute. And we get to read it! Sort of. To see how his high school life had gone, and what he hopes it’ll be like now. It really gives us the chance to see who he is and how he came to be this way. My goodness, it makes me want to smack and hug him at the same time. But of course, I still love him.

The romance picked up fast this time (for once). Unlike Perkins’ two previous works, neither protagonists had someone they were still dating/holding onto like their sole source of oxygen. All in all, it made their growing feelings for each other so much sweeter to read about, with the odd comical moments that any great couple have.

I–well I can go on and on about this book, but like I said. Sweet and simple. READ IT! With gorgeous settings like Manhattan, Paris and Barcelona, and the cutest couple as our protagonists, it’s like the perfect combination to falling in love with a book.

Overall Recommendation:
To keep it sweet and simple, this book takes the romantic storytelling to the next level. With two very different yet very complex and beautiful characters, it’s like unravelling a fairy tale as Isla and Josh fall for each other, and following the ups and downs of a real relationship as the every day drama tries to tear them apart. Oh, and of course, what’s cooler than reading about the love interest than in the form of a comic book story?
Seriously. It’s too cute for words. Please, read it. I swear it takes the best parts of Perkins’ previous works and mashes them into this gorgeous book.

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