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A Short History of the Girl Next Door

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  5,252 ratings  ·  1,066 reviews
The unrequited love of the girl next door is the centerpiece of this fiercely funny, yet heart-breaking debut novel.

Fifteen-year-old Matt Wainwright is in turmoil. He can’t tell his lifelong best friend, Tabby, how he really feels about her; his promising basketball skills are being overshadowed by his attitude on the court, and the only place he feels normal is in English
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published September 26th 2017 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
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Aa.1222 I'm in the 7th grade and I read this book for an assignment. I enjoyed it very much as it was very humorous even though it did have a lot of curse wor…moreI'm in the 7th grade and I read this book for an assignment. I enjoyed it very much as it was very humorous even though it did have a lot of curse words throughout, but it lets you go in the head of 15-year-old Matthew Wrainwright.(less)
Palo Cabo There is a romantic relationship, that causes one of the main conflicts in the book, however it doesn't involve the main character so it doesn't narra…moreThere is a romantic relationship, that causes one of the main conflicts in the book, however it doesn't involve the main character so it doesn't narrate anything more than kissing though it's implied something more happened.(less)
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Average rating 3.89  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,252 ratings  ·  1,066 reviews

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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
This is one that I have no clue how to rate.

I do have to admit that part of it may be the fact that I was stupid enough to read some reviews before I read this one and I got spoiled. DON'T DO THAT. This one has to be read without knowing anything about the plot twists.
I also probably would have given this a million stars if I had read it a few years ago.

Why didn't I? It felt too short and choppy. I felt like it tried TOO hard with the readers emotions without giving us enough about the chara
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
This book made me cry actual tears out of my own eyeholes. And I'm a heartless monster. That is all . . . .

Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Elyse  Walters
Oct 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Young Adult book..
This was the first time I ever read a book from my iPhone.

From my Kindle app...I read this sweet coming of age - quick read -heartbreaker...last week while coming & going.... standing in line at the post office ...the dentist office appt. ...and other ‘waiting’ type moments...
It kept me company. This slim book was about a boy who loves a girl - and basketball- but definitely more than either ...
more than a love story.
Teen books have a depth of honesty today that is va
Larry H
Aug 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars, rounded up.

A Short History of the Girl Next Door is a familiar yet immensely enjoyable story.

Tabby was Matt’s first friend. Since they were a little older than babies, she has been a part of his life and she features in all of his favorite—and sometimes, most embarrassing—memories. She’s truly a part of his family, and they all agree.

Even though she’s always been like a sister to him, now that they’re freshmen in high school, Matt is starting to realize his feelings for Tabby aren
Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Grab your tissues!!! A truly a fantastic book!! Going into it figured I’d read another cute young adult book, I was WRONG!! I was completely blown away, COMPLETELY!! The thoughts that went through Matt’s head were honest, vivid, endearing, candid, and raw. Loved it!!! This review isn’t doing any justice to this book, a must read!!
Apr 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: agenting
I may be biased, as I am his literary agent...but I could not stop laughing and crying and hugging my laptop, because this book is that great.
♛ may

i literally only picked this up bc i was so consumed with the other heavy books i was reading that i needed something light

and this did provide a light, easy, funny story.......until i reached the halfway point.

i think this book expressed SUCH a profound, deep, intimate level of grief that we often don't get to explore in books. it's the ugly, selfish side to grief, the one that makes us irrational and mean
Oct 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Quick read that is funny and very emotional. The bitterness of unrequited love does not escape any of us does it? Really this story can be described in three words: beautiful, funny, and heartbreaking.
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
“It’s our memories that make us who we are - those moments that for whatever reason, big or small, stick in our brains, that make up our stories.”

Well, that was a bit disappointing. I was excited for this book because it has all the makings of things I love in contemporaries: friendship, crushes, lots of cute moments, but this just did not work out for me. A Short History of the Girl Next Door follows basketball obsessed freshman Matty as he deals with secretly loving his best friend
Carole (Carole's Random Life)
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This book really got to me. I mean there were tears with this one. Real tears! I almost never shed tears over books but this one got through my shield. I didn't really know a lot about this book going in. I saw the book offered on Blogging for Books and decided to give it a try without reading any reviews for it. I ended up really enjoying Matt's story.

Matt and Tabby have always been together. Tabby lives just across the street from
Aug 18, 2017 rated it really liked it

“There’s a fine line between laughter and pain. And I think, sometimes, it’s the only thing you can do with your pain. Sometimes things suck so bad that you just have to laugh at it.”

A Short History of the Girl Next Door by Jared Reck is a sweet, hilarious, emotional read. A book that introduces readers to a full cast of characters you can’t help but fall in love with. They all made me laugh and tear up. But Matt. *places hand over heart* You have to meet Matty.

Matt Wainwright has such a sweet,
"I don't know what the point of all this is...there are times where there can't possibly be a point. Others, it's like the stars have lined themselves up just for you...I decided, however long I get, if I can spend time with the people I love, I don't really care what the point is."

This book sucker-punched me right in the feels and brought me back to a very vivid time in my life. The writing is real and raw and worthy of your time. Full RTC.
Apr 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Seriously, how can you see a person nearly every day of your life and never think a thing of it, then all of a sudden, one day, it's different?

* * * * 
4 / 5

A Short History of the Girl Next Door ripped out my poor unsuspecting heart and stomped all over it. I was expecting a slightly cliche novel that either follows movie plotlines and the nerdy guy gets the girl after other guys treat her like dirt, or one where the guy is all angsty but then finally makes peace with his unreturned feelings. Ins
Samantha (WLABB)
This heartfelt and funny story of love, friendship, and family broke my heart, but was terribly lovely. I have a physical book hangover from all the crying, but I loved all the moments I shared with Matt.

I finished this book back in September, but I still don't think I will be able to properly articulate how wonderful and painful this book was. This book was such a gut punch, I actually suggested that the book was written by Jared WReck, because he wrecked my heart! My feelings about this book
Ren (A Bookish Balance)
Sep 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned-hardcopy
May 24, 2021
4/5 stars

I lost someone very near and dear to my heart about a year after I read this book for the first time, and it ended up being a story I thought about a lot after their passing. There are some messages in ASHOTGND that really stuck with me and that really helped me cope with my loss and for that I'll always be grateful.

This second time around I had a much more difficult time getting into the story, and it wasn't until about the halfway point that I really became invested. I co
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I give this book five stars and all my tears.
Jen Ryland
Sep 19, 2017 added it
Shelves: bea-2017
Finally finished this!

As I said in a reading update, I am usually all about the quiet, character-driven contemporary stories. But for a good amount of time reading this, I thought it might be too quiet for me.
Matt is secretly in love with his neighbor, Tabby. They've been friends for years, and suddenly she's dating an upperclassman and he's feeling jealous and unsettled. Matt also loves basketball and dreams of making the varsity team.

A huge part of the book is just slice-of-life, with Matt pi

DNF @ Page 50

As of right now, I'll be DNFing this one. Unfortunately, I just wasn't jiving with this story. My mind kept wandering while I was reading and I was unable to connect to the characters and stay focused on the story.

At the moment, I can't really tell if it was because I just wasn't in the mood for this genre, but I do usually really enjoy contemporaries. I may try to come back to this one at some point, but probably not any time in the near future.

Update: Sept 27. 2017

I tried reading
Sep 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Well, I cried, so well done, book, well done. You made a non book crier shed a few tears because you hit so ridiculously hard in the feels.

Only issue I had with this book: the slow beginning. Had I not known that there was going to a bit kind of twist that had me laughing one minute to crying to another, this book might have been another kind of rating. Don't get me wrong: the beginning was enjoyable, and it is the perfect way to set up the story. However, it felt...well, a little too contempor
Ally (book__ventures)
Dec 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
In my opinion, this book is one of the best coming-of-age stories of the year or even since The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

I can't give much away on why it is so amazing, because it would ruin the plot of the story. A plot that is very well hidden by Jared Reck. I knew something was going to happen by the synopsis on the cover, but what exactly did happen left me crying big, ugly tears.

First let me start by saying that this book is light and wonderful, but will also break your heart into tiny
Rida Imran
Jan 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2018
My mom says a book that makes you cry is a good book.

Going into it. I didn't know much about it. Just that it's a story of unrequited love. And I thought that's all this was going to be. In the start it was hilarious at times and it made me feel for Matt. Cause it's just such a relatable situation loving someone knowing they don't feel way the same way about you but having this tiny voice inside that says they might one day. It sucks. And it's barely in the books or anything. So this was differ
nancy (The Ravenous Reader)
May 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A Short History of the Girl Next Door made me cry and laugh and cry some more...until all the words were gone and I was left wanting more from Jared Reck. This unrequited love story takes an honest and unflinching look at the missed opportunities that can haunt us, especially at an age when love can be so confusing and each choice seem paramount. It will make you want to seize the day, spend time with the ones you love and eat all the Nerds.
Aug 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'll be extremely honest and tell you that, about a third of the way through this story, I wasn't quite sure how I felt about this story. But it surprised me - in a good way! Despite the fact that I'm not much for basketball, and that there were things in this one that made me squint my eyes a bit at the page, I still thought it was an interesting take on moments in Matt's life. There's a hint of life lesson vibes by the end, but I actually liked that a lot too. ...more
Eh… I wish this was longer so that we could explore the main friendship.

This didn’t give what it was supposed to give…

The little brother, Murray was probably the best part of this!
Aug 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs:**

A Short History of the Girl Next Door is a standalone young adult novel by Jared Reck. This book totally wrecked me. It was completely unexpected, in such a good way. A Short History of the Girl Next Door is so different than the books I normally read, and I am so so glad that I stepped outside of my comfort zone because this book was an emotional journey that I absolutely loved. I typically read pretty happy books,
"Fiercely funny and heartbreaking" is the pitch for the book and it is spot on. I laughed, and then I spent the second half of this one crying my stupid eyes out. It reminded me a bit of Stupid Fast which is one of my favorite YA titles.

But what I loved most about this book -- aside from Matt's excellent voice and his clear love for Tabby -- is that this is a story about a boy coming to learn that he doesn't get to dictate or control anyone else's life...especially not the girl he grew up with
Nic Stone
Jun 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A real gut punch, this one.

Following Matt Wainwright around will have you laughing one second and wanting to punch someone the next. He's just so REAL and his emotions are so raw, you can't help but feel exactly what he's feeling, exactly how he's feeling it. From his sentiments on being strong-armed into a "mama bird" costume for Halloween by the combined efforts of his four-year-old brother's adorableness and his mom's guilt tripping, to his untamed fury in the face of devastation, Matt just
Nov 03, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: did-not-finish
I thought this would be a light book, considering the title. I thought him obsessing over basketball would be the most annoying part of the book. It's not. That's one reason why I don't read works by male authors very often. The other reason is that they have to create situations so they can be in 'man pain' and we can watch as the characters go through hell.

No. I didn't sign up for this shit. This book took a sharp turn off the road just for that 'man pain' factor and I HATE that. There was no
Lauren R.
Ugh. Why was I surprised that this book broke my heart when the word "heartbreaking" was literally in the synopsis?? I'm not sure what I was expecting but it was totally not this. There was a lot of pining and basketball and then WHAM. Ugh x 2. I don't know what to say but this was a really incredibly solid debut. ...more
Dena (Batch of Books)
Aug 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: clean-romance, ya
I must say that when I started reading this book, I had no intention of crying. I failed horribly.

At first glance, this book appears to be just another typical YA romance, but it's so much more than that. It's an honest look at a teenager's life, relationships, and the grieving process. There's romance and humor, but then something happens that changes everything.

The plot twist hit me upside the head. I didn't see it coming. I didn't read the synopsis (on purpose), so it's probably my own fault
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Jared Reck is the author of DONUTS AND OTHER PROCLAMATIONS OF LOVE and A SHORT HISTORY OF THE GIRL NEXT DOOR. He teaches 8th grade Language Arts, where he has been reading awesome books and writing alongside his students for more than fifteen years. He lives in Hanover, Pennsylvania, with his wife and two daughters.
Learn more about Jared at and follow him on Twitter @reckj.

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