Lola Carlyle's 12-Step Romance
Release Date: 05/05/15
Summary from Goodreads:
Lola Carlyle is lonely, out of sorts, and in for a boring summer. So when her best friend, Sydney, calls to rave about her stay at a posh Malibu rehab and reveals that the love of Lola’s life, Wade Miller, is being admitted, she knows what she has to do. Never mind that her worst addiction is decaf cappuccino; Lola is going to rehab.
Lola arrives at Sunrise Rehab intent solely on finding Wade, saving him from himself, and—naturally—making him fall in love with her…only to discover she’s actually expected to be an addict. And get treatment. And talk about her issues with her parents, and with herself. Plus she has insane roommates, and an irritatingly attractive mentor, Adam, who’s determined to thwart her at every turn.
Oh, and Sydney? She’s gone.
Turns out, once her pride, her defenses, and her best friend are stripped away, Lola realizes she’s actually got a lot to overcome…if she can open her heart long enough to let it happen.
About the Author
Danielle Younge-Ullman is a novelist, playwright and freelance writer. She studied English and Theater at McGill University, then returned to her hometown of Toronto to work as professional actor for ten years. Danielle’s short story, Reconciliation, was published in MODERN MORSELS—a McGraw-Hill Anthology for young adults—in 2012, her one-act play, 7 Acts of Intercourse, debuted at Toronto's SummerWorks Festival in 2005, and her adult novel, FALLING UNDER, was published by Penguin in 2008. Danielle lives in Toronto with her husband and two daughters.
It was quite difficult to get past the first leg of this book. As non-celebu people we tend to automatically condemn anyone who has an attitude like Lola's. The title alone portrays her self-importance as if every person in the world should know her name and want to hear her story. It is a common thing to roll our eyes at people who act and think like Lola but the fact is that she doesn't know any better. She shows some sliver of conscience when she's a little reluctant to go to rehab just to meet a guy but her selfishness wins out against her head. Granted, she was misled by how much rehabilitation this place was actually doing.
Which brings me to Sydney, her so-called friend. I did not like her. At all. It was an immediate reaction from the summary and I held onto it through the book.
I thought this was very unique to put into a YA book as you don't often see stories about underage teenagers getting rehab. However, I do think that there were other addictions Lola could have had that were more realistic and wouldn't have been as harmful as alcoholism. I think the seriousness of it is brushed aside a little when she decides that it has less problems than drug addictions. However, there are non-lethal addictions she could have taken on instead. I suppose this adds to Lola's cluelessness about the world and lends to her naivete. However, perhaps it is an insight into Lola's frame of mind as she was trying to find something that would make her forget.
There were times where I felt that the humour was belittling the seriousness of addictions but maybe it was needed so the story wouldn't turn too morbid.
I misread the summary and I was not expecting a love triangle. However, I was fortunate that this was not a leading theme in the story. The story was more of a coming-of-age story where Lola learned and grew as she figured out that she had issues that she had to overcome even if she was just there to find her long-time crush.
All-in-all it was a good read. Lots of growing and some humour.
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