Book Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Title: Isla and the Happily Ever After
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Series: Anna and the French Kiss #3
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publisher: Dutton
Published: August 14th, 2014
Page count: 399 pages
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased

 Goodreads | Amazon 
Book Summary:
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.

     *The Reader's Review*

     My rating: 5/5 stars
*Warning: Huge messy review, sorry!*

Aaaah, I can't take my heart right now. It's so FULL of good feelings that it practically hurts. It's just that this book is SO FREAKING BEAUTIFUL. I'm sooooooo in love! I feel like crying. I feel like dancing. I feel like I haven't really been living until now.  Feels, feels, FEELS, people! Isla and the Happily Ever After is THE book. Stephanie Perkins is hands down the best YA Contemporary writer ever. She makes you laugh, she makes your heart melt and she makes you suffer in the most precious way. 

Isla (eye-la) is a whole different experience from my other two Stephanie favorites, Anna and the French Kiss, and Lola and the Boy Next Door. This book is more mature, more intense, yet equally sweet and stunning. The romance swooned me off my feet and the special guests made my heart explode in happiness. Clearly I just want to gush and hug this book all day long. I'm actually itching to read it again now (and I will after my sister gets her scoop of awesomeness). 

It's so thrilling to be back now at the city of love with Isla and Josh. They are both so adorably cute together. Isla with her shy yet fiery persona, and Josh with his talent and ability to say and draw the most beautiful scenarios. I'm so glad this book doesn't let me wait that long for both to get together, unlike Anna and Lola (although I do love the anticipation). The attraction between Isla and Josh was so palpable and so right, it would have been unreal if they didn't fall for each other soon. However, they do have to deal with so many insecurities and things that are simply out of their hands, thus ensuing a big heart-wrenching rollercoaster ride.

But the best part *clutches heart* THE ENDING. The last chapters were so perfect and magical that I think my heart stopped from too much beauty. Now I want to cry again because Isla & Josh, Anna & Étienne, and Lola & Cricket always make me want to find love just like theirs. At least for a day, I'll take anything.

Seriously, you have to read this book like, now.  If you haven't started the series, don't worry, you don't have to start with book one as they can work pretty well as stand-alones, but trust me, it works better when read in order. 

On a side note...

I'm sad that this series has come to an end because it's not only the last about Isla, but Anna and Lola as well. It definitely hurts to know there won't be more. However, I'm glad the characters got their happily ever afters. 

If I had to pick a favorite out of the three books, Isla would come out at the bottom but not by much. It fairly stays in the same order because:

Anna and the French Kiss is this sweet story about being afraid of choosing what you want and making big changes in life. Of giving the chance to something you would never have considered before. It's a great book that builds up something huge, the anticipation pure torture, but extremely satisfying. It's the kind of book that makes you want to jump in and live inside forever. Not to mention my boyfriend, Étienne, who is the ultimate bookboyfriend of all times.

Lola and the Boy Next Door is all about identity and misunderstandings. Of speaking out loud and learning from mistakes, of forgiving. If Anna was sweet, then this one was bowls and bowls of bright colored candies and pies. Again, the anticipation for a great ending is terrible, but SO worth it. An extremely bright book with a bright guy. Cricket is the boy I would love to spend every minute of every day for the rest of my life.

And Isla and the Happily Ever After is the story about finding yourself AND believing in yourself. In what you can do, how much you are worth and how beautiful and interesting you can be even when you don't have your life all planned out. Like Josh says, it's okay to be a blank canvas because they are the ones full of possibilities, and artists are inspired by them. Terrificly raw, this book gives you another love story with a stunning guy you cannot live without.

So even though Josh is not my Étienne, and certainly not my Cricket (yes, the hard decision comes down to the boys), he is MY Josh and I wouldn't change him one bit. I have love for everyone, you see.

Now, THE END. *whew, I know.*


  1. Don't mind me I'm just sitting here crying unhappy jealous tears. I still haven't gotten a copy of this book. :( I must get this book! I already knew it would be a five star. Perkins' books are great! Awesome review!

    1. I know! Stephanie could write a sentence long book in a napkin and it would be perfect <3 I hope you get it very very soon. :D

  2. I've been hearing a lot about this book. Well, I've always heard a lot about the series in general, really, but I don't know why I haven't found myself compelled enough to pick it up...Still, I think it's interesting and I'm happy this third instalment has been so amazing for you, Melissa! Great review, you got me a bit more intrigued, I must admit that! :)