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The Girl Next Door

The Girl Next Door cover

The Girl Next Door

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Part To All the Boys I've Loved Before, part Everything Leads to You, this queer rom-com puts a smart spin on all the YA tropes we can't get enough of.

Film club nerd Cleo Ferrara’s senior year was like a storyboard waiting to be filmed. She knew the scenes, the players, and the eventual happy ending. Attend film school with her boyfriend, Daniel Sheridan. Become a film-making power couple. Take Hollywood by storm. Cut. Print. Fade to black.?

But in a plot twist Cleo never saw coming, Daniel dumps her for Kiki Pearson, the head cheerleader. This would be the point in the movie where the Sad Girl Music plays while the protagonist looks longingly out her window, but when Cleo looks out hers, she sees Marianne Lacerda, her former best friend…and a new storyboard unfolds.

Marianne is also nursing a heartache. When Daniel was dumping Cleo for Kiki, Kiki was dumping Marianne for Daniel. So instead of watching their exes parade around school, Cleo and Marianne start fake dating each other to ignite a little chaos in this bizarre love square. But any movie buff knows that when you introduce fake dating in Act I, it’s going to get real by Act III. With friendship, the future, and love on the line, can Cleo script a happy ending for herself—or will she get her heart broken again?

Cecilia Vinesse is the author of the young adult novels Seven Days of You and The Summer of Us. She was born in France but grew up between Tokyo, Japan, and Greenville, South Carolina. Her obsession with Nora Ephron movies led her to New York City, where she worked in children’s book publishing and lived in an apartment furnished mostly by stacks of novels. Now she’s in a small Edwardian house in England, where she spends most of her non-writing time devouring rom-coms and podcasts, baking as many cookies as possible, and holding horror movie marathons with her girlfriend and dog.