THE GIRL NEXT DOOR by Selene Castrovilla

July 24, 2010 5 flames 9

Author: Selene Castrovilla
Source: Publisher
* I received this book free of charge in exchange for an honest review*

  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Westside Books (June 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 193481315X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1934813157


While most seniors at her high school are worrying about prom and final exams, seventeen-year-old Sam is desperately trying to save her best friend Jesse’s life. He has a rare, treatment-resistant form of cancer, and his odds of survival aren’t good; he may have only ten months left to live. Through every bit of his pain and anguish, Sam has been by his side—through the grueling, aggressive treatments and their awful aftermath, to sleeping in his room when he’s afraid to be alone. Best friends and neighbors since preschool, Jesse and Sam’s friendship is changing. Now they’re falling in love, and the bond between them grows stronger even as Jesse weakens. Will they have a happy ending…or will their story end in heartbreak? 


There are books that move you, but then there are books that move you so much that you aren’t even sure where to begin in a review. This book moved me so much, that I couldn’t even bring myself to review this book until the next day because I cried so much just thinking about it.

Jesse and Sam have been friends since they were toddlers.  Everything is going great until one night during the school play, Jesse is struck with horrible pain.  While in the hospital, Jesse finds out he has cancer.  A form of cancer that will kill him no matter what treatment he undergoes.  Sam is with him the whole time. Jesse doesn’t want anyone around him except his childhood friend Sam.  There friendship is so sweet that you can’t help but cry at that alone during the book.  During his process of chemo and such, Sam is with Jesse every step of the way. Her grades are failing in school, yet she is determined to be there for Jesse.  Their friendship evolves into something more and their love is shown on each page you read.  From the beginning of page one, to the very last word on the last page, you will be swept up in the pain, love and honesty that the author brings to the book.

I had a very hard time reading this book because of the way their friendship grows into so much more and knowing in my heart what would happen.  Through Jesse’s poetry and Sam’s struggle of coping, you will find yourself struggling to just make it to the next chapter without having to grab a box of Kleenex.  I had to set the book down several times and convince myself to go on because I was crying so hard.  This book left an impression on me so much that I am still thinking about this book the next day and crying while I write this.

Finding a book that leaves an impression on you like this is a rare find for me. I usually can accept in my mind that it is fiction and move on.  Yet with this book, it left such an impression with me that I can’t stop thinking about the last few pages and instantly crying.

A book that will touch your heart and leave you with a lasting impression of true love and friendship. I am so glad to have found this book and look forward to more of this writing style from this author.


Outstanding Book That Will Stay On My Bookshelf
For Rereading! 5 STARS

9 Responses to “THE GIRL NEXT DOOR by Selene Castrovilla”

  1. kjovus

    Thank you for this review, I have not heard of this book. I like a good tear jerker too, one that makes you think about life.

  2. Sarah (My World of Books)

    I will definitely be adding this to my bookshelf! I love books that make a lasting impression. I have cried my way through a book before. The characters always stayed with me. Even today if I hear their names I think of them even though they are pieces of fiction.

  3. HistoricalRomanceJunkie Rita

    I am JUST getting over ‘Crossing Oceans’ by Gina Holmes. IDK if I will be strong enough for another book like that.

    But it’s always the books with the most meaning that leave an impression on us and show us what lifes all about. Fun Flirty Romances are my thing, but every now and then, I need to curl up under my hello kitty sheets and read a tear jerker that helps put life in perspective.

    Maybe not just yet, but I will def seek out this book.

    -much love, Rita

  4. Natalie (Mindful Musings)

    Wow! Your review kind of reminds me of Lurlene McDaniel’s MG books that I was such a huge fan of as a kid. I’m putting this one on my TBR list now! Thanks so much for the recommendation! 😀

Leave a Reply