Book review: Isla and the Happily Ever After

I don’t want to jinx myself, but I have been reading a lot this month! I thought I was on my sixth one, but I am on the fifth one now. (Hopefully will be on the fifth or possibly sixth one when Monday comes around. I’ve been reading at night on vacation!)

***This review will have a few spoilers in it because I had misgivings with this book. You have been warned. 

IslaHere’s what Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins was about according to Goodreads:

Love 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.

Isla started off strong for me. I related to Isla at first because she was a redhead like me. (Except she said her hair was more auburn.) And then we learn how her name is pronounced and it is much cooler than what I had been calling it in my head. (It’s like Island without the nd according to the book.)

The first couple of chapters between Isla and her crush Josh were cute. I liked the whole restaurant scene and the fact that she was doped up on medicine from getting dentures out. This all promised to be a very good set up.

It went down for me a few chapters later because the plot went from just an innocent crush to an oh my gosh he has liked me this whole time?! to let’s be boyfriend and girlfriend to I love you so fast, it was practically an instant love love interest book.

Instant love has been becoming a turn off for me because it’s not as believable as the build up to the slow burners romance. We saw how Anna and St. Clair or whatever her boyfriend’s name is got together. We saw how Lola and Cricket got together. (I know, I still need to eventually read this!)

Josh and Isla was just BOOM. I just didn’t feel the connection with them as much as I did for the others. AND Josh was such a toxic character. He seemed like the cool bad boy artist but there were times when he just made me shake my head at him because of the stuff he said. For example, one time he called and was like… you are supposed to tell me you love me at the beginning of every phone call, why didn’t you????? This alone said so much about his character to me.

And Isla and Josh both cried so much.

The thing I did like about this book was the bit that had Anna and Lola in it, it was like a reunion type of chapter, that was my favorite thing about it and I wished the whole book could have been like a reunion instead of about Josh and Isla.

It was not completely horrible, I just was not able to find a believable connection for Josh and Isla, but I was able to relate to the other character’s like Isla and her best friend together. I liked their story line a lot.

Isla and the Happily Ever After is a two star rating because I didn’t feel comfortable enough to give it a one star rating because of some of the other characters and of course, Anna and Lola. I am still willing to give Stephanie Perkins books another try in the future since I did enjoy Anna and Lola more.

I’m sorry this ended up being a spoiler type of review. What do you think? Have you read these books yet? Feel free to leave a comment below! 


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