The Boy Next Story

The Boy Next Story

The second book in a series where your favorite literary characters come to life, inspired by the timeless classic, Little Women!There’s no one better than the boy next door. At least not according to Aurora Campbell, fourteen, who has been in love with Tobias May since their very first sandbox kiss. The problem is, he’s in love with her older sister, Merrilee. And Merri i...

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Title:The Boy Next Story
Author:Tiffany Schmidt
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Boy Next Story Reviews

  • Andi (Andi's ABCs)

    Last year when I reviewed A Date with Darcy (previously Bookish Boyfriends) I said: “…I have read a couple of books by Tiffany Schmidt, and I have met her in person. Bookish Boyfriends is probably the most Tiffany book I have ever read.” After reading The Boy Next Story, I stand corrected. This is the most Tiffan

    Last year when I reviewed A Date with Darcy (previously Bookish Boyfriends) I said: “…I have read a couple of books by Tiffany Schmidt, and I have met her in person. Bookish Boyfriends is probably the most Tiffany book I have ever read.” After reading The Boy Next Story, I stand corrected. This is the most Tiffany book I have ever read! I know that sounds weird to say and if you have never met her you may not understand, but I could feel her and her love for writing and teaching and the classic novels in every turn of the page. Honestly, I couldn’t have loved this book more if I tried and that is because I could tell how much Tiffany loved crafting it.

    The Boy Next Story is Rory’s story. The youngest of the Campbell girls, Rory has always had trouble finding her place. She is the artistic one, the forgotten one, the one that feels like the extra. Now at a new school, she is having even more trouble. Between her failing math grade to being blatantly disliked in her once favorite class, art, Rory is having a hard time. And her crush on her neighbor, Toby isn’t helping since he is still head over heels for her sister, Merrilee. All Rory wants is to be seen and to be herself. Now she just needs to figure out how to do that…and manage not to flunk out of Hero High. Good thing her English teacher is some kind of magic.

    I have loved Rory since the first time she was introduced in A Date with Darcy. There was something about her that connected with me and I think that is what also made her book so much more special to read. I 100% loved everything about this book. I loved Rory and her sisters and her group of friends. I love her relationship with Toby and with her art. I loved how lost she felt and alone and how that made her a better person when she grew and learned from all of it. And I loved how, as a reader, I got to watch her grow and develop into the fantastic person that she is.

    I say this all the time, but reviewing a book you love is so hard to do. My love for The Boy Next Story is difficult to put into the appropriate words. I loved it so much and I feel like that isn’t enough to say. I feel like I’m doing this amazing book a disservice by only saying that, but honestly that I all I have. That and I need you to go out and buy a copy and fall in love with Rory and Toby and all the others like I did.

  • Molly  Elizabeth

    Ugh hells yes

  • hallie bertling

    "when you keep your fears locked inside they have power, but when you confront them, you give yourself the power to fix them."

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    here's what i find super*interesting about literature. in particular, perhaps, most visible in ya fiction:

    i see the OLD me so often. even if it's ten or twenty years later from that point in my life's history, sometimes an author seems to have SEEN me. and while i had to take my own path to get where i am today, it feels good to know it mattered. and confirm that i am

    "when you keep your fears locked inside they have power, but when you confront them, you give yourself the power to fix them."

    ---

    here's what i find super*interesting about literature. in particular, perhaps, most visible in ya fiction:

    i see the OLD me so often. even if it's ten or twenty years later from that point in my life's history, sometimes an author seems to have SEEN me. and while i had to take my own path to get where i am today, it feels good to know it mattered. and confirm that i am stronger now. but to know those doubts and fears were real and tangible, to be able to see and experience them through the eyes and emotions of a book character-- it grants such powerful plausibility. and gives me adequate allowance to revel in the post-trauma warm fuzzies right along with these characters because happy endings are real. even outside of books. and i'm always grateful.

    so here's what i loved about THE BOY NEXT STORY:

    rory, our heroine, is an artist. and at no point did i cringe at descriptions of her sketching or creating (the portrait masterpiece in a little over an hour, maybe, but i'll roll with it just this once.) ;) sometimes in books, seeing your own hobbies manifest as a character trait is cringe-worthy. but this book was pretty accurate. :) and it was refreshing.

    i also loved that while rory is the youngest of three sisters, and i as an only child can't relate to that, i did have two older girl cousins who often, intentionally or not, left me out of things. so i feel i could relate to everything. (as i navy brat, i was always seemingly the new kid &/or the outsider, so all sorts of trauma wrapped up in that, too!)

    i related to being an introvert. to having a magic high school english teacher. (cheers to my own mrs. grieg!) to being lost in my art world. to getting irritated when i'm interrupted & creating. to declining invitations but wanting to be thought of. to stiffling emotions because the messy truth hurts. to being in love with the proverbial boy-next-door bestie when he's always in love with someone else.....

    it was a wonderful, heart*racing, emotional roller coaster of a book.

    it's also the first and only time i've almost sympathized with "amy march" instead of loathing her with ever fibre of my being. ;D

    and i whole-heartedly agree with ms. schmidt's acknowledgements: "...and [thank you] to whoever cast christian bale as laurie in the 1994 version of LITTLE WOMEN."

    oh-- ALSO for fans of the SONG sisters and all of their family dynamics in TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE!

    (also, p.s. there are no content warnings for this book unless you are unfamiliar with the story of LITTLE WOMEN and don't want spoilers.) ;)

    so pleaaaaase go read & enjoy both of the author's BOOKISH BOYFRIENDS books. they're delightful and delicious and the perfect reads for all types of humans.

  • Laura Gardner

    Thanks to author @tiffanyschmidt for sending me a copy of this book to share with #kidlitexchange -- I looooved it! This book is out May 21, 2019

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    5/5 for The Boy Next Story, which is possibly even more wonderful than the first book in the Bookish Boyfriends series. Maybe it's that I identify more with introvert Rory or maybe it's that I fell hard for her love interest, boy next door Tobias. Who can resist a story about friendship that blooms into love??

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    Here's what else I loved:

    *a chance to

    Thanks to author @tiffanyschmidt for sending me a copy of this book to share with #kidlitexchange -- I looooved it! This book is out May 21, 2019

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    5/5 for The Boy Next Story, which is possibly even more wonderful than the first book in the Bookish Boyfriends series. Maybe it's that I identify more with introvert Rory or maybe it's that I fell hard for her love interest, boy next door Tobias. Who can resist a story about friendship that blooms into love??

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    Here's what else I loved:

    *a chance to spend more time with the other Campbell family members, especially boisterous, irrepressible Merri, but also Lilly who is growing on me

    *like the first book, a Campbell sister thinks her life might be following one literary plot (The Great Gatsby in this case), but in reality there's another plot afoot (Little Women). Schmidt makes the parallels beautifully and I love the idea of a prescient English teacher who can give students just the right book to match them (and their love life!)

    *Rory isn't a perfect student like her sister, but she puts in the WORK on her academics so she can continue doing what she loves, her art. What a wonderful message.

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    You do NOT need to read the first book in this series to enjoy this fabulous book. I will say, however, that all middle school librarians should buy both books. They're popular! I have two copies of the first in the series and they're never in. I expect this one will fly off the shelves, as well.

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    #yalit #bookreview #librariansfollowlibrarians #reading #amreading #romance #romcombook #librariesofinstagram #littlewomen #tiffanyschmidt @abramskids

  • Samantha (WLABB)

    Rating: 3.5 Stars

    We are back at Hero High for another adorable installment of Bookish Boyfriends. This book focused on the youngest Campbell sister, Rory. And you see: Rory liked Toby, but Toby liked Merri, and Merri, very much so, loved Fielding. Yes! We are dealing with several cases of unrequited love here, but with the right book recommendations from their sort of magical English teacher, both Rory and Toby were able to tackle the issues of their hearts.

    As with the previous book, Schmidt giv

    Rating: 3.5 Stars

    We are back at Hero High for another adorable installment of Bookish Boyfriends. This book focused on the youngest Campbell sister, Rory. And you see: Rory liked Toby, but Toby liked Merri, and Merri, very much so, loved Fielding. Yes! We are dealing with several cases of unrequited love here, but with the right book recommendations from their sort of magical English teacher, both Rory and Toby were able to tackle the issues of their hearts.

    As with the previous book, Schmidt gives us a great heroine to cheer for, and I was especially behind her, because of all the personal struggles she was experiencing. First, she was enamored with someone, who didn't really see her, and that had to hurt. Then, she was constantly being left behind by her two older sisters, and that exclusion left her very wounded. As if that was not enough to deal with, the one place where Rory usually found her bliss, art class, was becoming a war zone, and her less than stellar grades might keep her from an amazing artistic experience. My heart genuinely ached for her, because it seemed like Rory just couldn't catch a break. But as with all books I enjoy, Rory went on a personal journey. She made some changes to her life, thanks to a few literary recommendations, and good things started to happen for her, especially because she started to realize her own worth.

    As with the pervious installment, this one featured storylines from two classics - The Great Gatsby and Little Women. I did like the way that Schmidt wove these books into the plot, but as with the last book, I liked the second storyline more than the first, and felt like the first part could have been trimmed a bit.

    Still, it was a delight watching Rory enjoy some success. Her trip to NYC was rather wonderful, and I can't complain about the way that trip ended. The romance was terribly sweet and adorable, which is what I expected from Schmidt, but what really played a big part in my enjoyment of this book were the family dynamics.

    Though this was a romance, the relationship between the three Campbell sisters earned a lot of attention, and you know what I love? I love a great sibling bond. These three young women were very different from on another, and expressed themselves in very different ways, but it was the synergy they had a group, that made them unstoppable. It was fantastic to see them working through their various issues together, and I thought the pairing with Little Women was a really smart move.

    Overall: Another solid edition to the series. It was fun, cute, and entertaining with some good messaging and a wonderful family focus.

    *ARC provided in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Kimberly

    Thank you @kidlitexchange and @tiffanyschmidt for a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

    “When you keep your fears locked inside they have power, but when you confront them, you give yourself the power to fix them.”

    This was such a sweet, young adult romance. I love how the author tied in correlations with The Great Gatsby and Little Women. The MC has to read both as school assignments and it was fun knowing those classic storylines and watching her try to encorporate those literary

    Thank you @kidlitexchange and @tiffanyschmidt for a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

    “When you keep your fears locked inside they have power, but when you confront them, you give yourself the power to fix them.”

    This was such a sweet, young adult romance. I love how the author tied in correlations with The Great Gatsby and Little Women. The MC has to read both as school assignments and it was fun knowing those classic storylines and watching her try to encorporate those literary lessons into her own life. You will absolutely love the English teacher.

    I adored Rory. I could easily relate to her eating habits, struggles with math, her social anxiety and that feeling of being left out at times. It’s always wonderful to find a character who is an introvert and see their feelings and emotions depicted so perfectly. Rory is a fantastic artist and I enjoyed how that aspect was woven throughout the story - especially the dog portraits!

    What I really loved about this story was the various relationships. The love interest was just adorable and the perfect boy next door to crush on. The fact that he understood Rory and how to handle her personality was just icing on the cake. There’s also a girl / boy platonic friendship which gets me every time and reminds me of my childhood. Then there’s the whole family dynamic between the parents, sisters and in-laws. It was so realistic and offered some great scenes and topics.

    This is definitley a light romance, but more importantly a wonderful story about facing your trepidations and learning to speak up about your worries and frustrations. This is book 2 in the Bookish Boyfriends series. I had no problem jumping right in without reading the first book. I definitely plan on going back to read A Date with Darcy though because I’d love to spend more time with these characters!

  • Divine Anas

    Delving into this book was quite daunting at first because I didn’t realize until then that the MC is 15 here. I thought that this might not appeal to me anymore and I’m scared to feel apathetic if I find the usual tropes for YA Contemporary here. Spoiler alert: it

    Delving into this book was quite daunting at first because I didn’t realize until then that the MC is 15 here. I thought that this might not appeal to me anymore and I’m scared to feel apathetic if I find the usual tropes for YA Contemporary here. Spoiler alert: it wasn’t.

    Rory is awkward, an introvert, a vegan, an artist, and has a hopeless crush on her childhood friend and neighbor Toby. Cute right? I’m currently in architecture school (in my last year) and reading about Rory’s inclination to the arts and her tendencies sparked nostalgia. I mean, I’m not as amazing as Rory’s talent for drawing but, I loved how Tiffany Schmidt fleshed out the aspect of art here that reminded me so much of my creative process when I was a teen up to this day. This was quite personal for me and I can’t help but feel so elated to see my teenage self represented here.

    Her fears, her doubts, her excessive overthinking, her awkward and clunky self was quite hilarious, cringy, and undoubtedly relatable and believable. I think if you look closely we all could find parts of our vulnerable selves in Rory.

    YA Contemporary was once notorious for the absence of family support in their storylines. However, this kind of landscape now seems to shift as the years go by and The Boy Next Story is no different in following this route. I love how this book reinforces the importance of a family and a healthy social circle to a teenager realistically and how it influences and projects their disposition in life. I could not stress this enough, but realistic representation of a family’s influence on belief systems of an individual is a must have for every coming of age book.

    One thing I liked about this as well is how we get to be introduced to other interests like musical scores, the arts, sibling dynamics, high school woes, the malleable nature of friendships, the multifaceted concept of privilege and, even a commentary on vegans.

    On vegans:

    Truth be told, I salute vegans and their lifestyles but reading a nuanced take on their choices is quite refreshing and educational.

    On privileges:

    Rory’s comment on this one reminded me of the social pressures every teenager feels in a high school because let’s face it, we all experience this. (or so I think) Studying from a private high school is a privilege but as a teenager, one would usually fail to appreciate one’s own privileges when faced with so much more from others.

    On friendships and love:

    On siblings:

    On art and music:

    This book is about a girl finding her self through a book’s influence. What a perfect premise. I love that this effectively does that to Rory as well as to the readers!

    The Boy Next Story might not be appealing to some at first, but it is definitely worth a read with its wholesome message.

  • Nay Denise

    This was such a cute read, I'm going with a 3.75 star rating on this. The reading experience was awesome because it included piece of The Great Gatsby and the characters were all interesting, but I wasn't extremely pulled in enough to give it a complete 4 star rating.

    Aurora Campbell aka Rory seems to be a whiny character, but as the story goes on I begin to like her much more than expected. She's a typical teen who is trying to figure things out for herself an

    This was such a cute read, I'm going with a 3.75 star rating on this. The reading experience was awesome because it included piece of The Great Gatsby and the characters were all interesting, but I wasn't extremely pulled in enough to give it a complete 4 star rating.

    Aurora Campbell aka Rory seems to be a whiny character, but as the story goes on I begin to like her much more than expected. She's a typical teen who is trying to figure things out for herself and where she fits. She's an introvert. She's the type to want to stay locked away with her paints and brushes and escape with art. I loved her because I could somewhat connect to her as a character. She's not the picture perfect girl, but rather the one that struggles with her grades and tries to find where she fits in at school and in her home.

    Toby, the boy next door, was a funny guy to me. I enjoyed seeing him learn things along the way. He also gave some great advice to Rory as well. He wasn't like most guys -- pushy and overbearing. Rather he was laid back and almost shy at times.

    The romance was too adorable between Rory and Toby. I just think they were stinking cute together -- especially in the last few chapters when they "ran away" -- C U T E !

    Huck and Clara were some BOMB friends. They always found ways to make Rory feel better and gain a bit more confidence. Merri & Lilly are some interesting older sister. They seemed to nag Rory way too much.

    Overall, this was a good read. I would recommend it for a fun, cute YA read.

  • Mari Johnston

    This review and many others can also be found at

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    This was such a delight to read! Though it is the second book in the Bookish Boyfriends series, you don’t have to read A Date With Darcy before The Boy Next Story. I jumped right into this second novel and now that I’ve read it I’m anxious to go back and read the first one. Tiffany Schmidt’s writing style was fun and completely perfect for breathing life into these characters.

    Rory and her sisters felt real and full of life

    This review and many others can also be found at

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    This was such a delight to read! Though it is the second book in the Bookish Boyfriends series, you don’t have to read A Date With Darcy before The Boy Next Story. I jumped right into this second novel and now that I’ve read it I’m anxious to go back and read the first one. Tiffany Schmidt’s writing style was fun and completely perfect for breathing life into these characters.

    Rory and her sisters felt real and full of life. Each of the sisters had wonderfully unique and distinctive personalities and I loved seeing their interactions. These three were very much sisters and had all of the squabbles you would expect, but also some very loving moments as well. Even though they didn’t always get along you could tell that at the end of the day they loved and cared about each other. Rory’s parents were also great and the fact that they were supportive of her and her grades even though she doesn’t have all As really touched my heart. They knew she was working hard and trying her best and we need to be seeing more of this.

    I wish I could say that all of the characters were as great as the sisters, but they weren’t. Aside from Toby, the others were very run of the mill ordinary and easily confused. I had trouble keeping them apart and there was even one that throughout the entire book I could never figure out who she was or where she came from. They were all likeable but too similar and indistinguishable.

    Two of my favorite tropes, a fake relationship and a slow burn, were included in this story! The slow burn really was so slooooow and I loved every second of it. When it came to the fake relationship though I wasn’t as impressed. It was very much glossed over. Mostly the characters just mentioned that it was taking place without there being any action behind it. The entire thing felt very insignificant and pointless.

    The Boy Next Story really was a very endearing read! Little Women isn’t my favorite classic but I did love the parallels between it and this story. This is a longer read which isn’t typical for a lot of the contemporary novels I read, but the book passed quickly and never felt like it was dragging by. If contemporaries or fun light reads are what you like then I definitely suggest picking up Tiffany Schmidt’s next installment!

  • Candyce Kirk

    Let's start off by saying that you don't have to read the first book in this series to read this one. Even though they are connected in a few ways, The Boy Next Story can be read as a standalone.

    That being said, I have to sat that The Boy Next Story is a perfect summer read. We meet Aurora (Rory) who is an artistic type and quite talented. She's more of an introvert and is having a hard time finding her place at school and maybe even at home. I loved Rory, because she isn't the perfect teenage g

    Let's start off by saying that you don't have to read the first book in this series to read this one. Even though they are connected in a few ways, The Boy Next Story can be read as a standalone.

    That being said, I have to sat that The Boy Next Story is a perfect summer read. We meet Aurora (Rory) who is an artistic type and quite talented. She's more of an introvert and is having a hard time finding her place at school and maybe even at home. I loved Rory, because she isn't the perfect teenage girl about to start a romantic journey. She has a hard time with school, works hard and is still insecure about many things. Rory works at it though and I think it's amazing the author shows us a character like this as well. Your dreams still work even when you have to work a bit harder.

    The Boy Next Story mixes The Great Gatsby and Little Women in the plot and even though I haven't read either of these, I didn't feel like I was missing anything. Enough is explained to understand why it's used in the book, but it's not too much. I could still pick up these books and want to read them. My favorite part of these books being included was the English teacher who seemed to know what books a student was needing. I love the idea of a book helping someone understand themselves more and their dreams.

    On top of amazing connections with books, there are some awesome characters. Rory becomes friends with Huck and I loved his character. He seems really genuine and I honestly wouldn't mind seeing him in his own story. Toby, the boy next door, is really fun as well. I liked getting to know him while reading this book and the romance between him and Rory was really cute. Not too much, but just enough.

    Besides the friends we meet along the way, a lot of time is spent with Rory's family. I felt bad at times for Rory, because she really felt left out. Their relationships do develop during this book and it was nice seeing Rory stand up for herself and start telling them how she felt.

    All in all, this was such a cute story! I definitely plan on picking up the first one soon. If it's anything like this one, I need to read it this summer.

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