Book Review: The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark

boy next door

The Boy Next Door
4 stars

Maddy and Gabe have grown-up next door to each other and have been skating partners since the first time they stepped on to the ice. Maddy’s also been in love with Gabe for years, and has had to see him with other girls. Gabe, meanwhile, can’t allow himself to feel anything but sibling affection for Maddy. He’s never had a relationship last more than two weeks and he doesn’t want to ruin their on ice relationship. But when their coach assigns them a new, romantic routine, it changes everything.

This was a cute, quick read. I love figure skating movies and this one put me in the same mood I’m in while watching something like The Cutting Edge.

I liked Maddy a bit more than Gabe as main characters. I really believed her drive to succeed and how passionate she was about skating. For her, there was no future without skating. She could be very impulsive and easily jumped to conclusions but she was always willing to take that risk to get to the next level. Gabe, on the other hand, was more of a worrier. He worried about everything and I think that was why he didn’t grow on me as much as Maddy. They had so many cute moments together, both on and off the ice and it was easy to see how such a strong bond had formed between them.

I also liked the contrast between Gabe/Maddy and their ice dancing friends Chris/Kate. Chris and Kate were partner who were dating and they were always fighting. For Maddy and especially Gabe, it was like being shown the worst case scenario every day during practice. In their case, the best friends to lovers had so much more at stake since it could ruin their skating partnership. It was also a nice contrast to see how much more focused on skating the pair of Gabe and Maddy were compared to Chris and Kate.

There were so many skating references in the book and I loved it. The cursing using skating terms could have been annoying but instead, I found it cute. It just made sense considering the characters. It was great to see that not only did the characters have to grow and mature through the book, their skating had to as well. The skating storyline wasn’t forfeited for the sake of a romantic one.

It took me one night to read this book. It was cute and easy to read but also, I just didn’t want to stop. This one just came out but I’m already ready for more, maybe a Chris and Kate companion book?



Filed under books, reviews, ya books

3 responses to “Book Review: The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark

  1. Ooh, this sounds really good! I haven’t read any skating books, so hopefully the terms don’t go over my head. I’m adding this to my TBR 🙂

  2. Pingback: January Wrap-up/February TBR | Overflowing Bookshelves

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