Cover image for The boy next door
The boy next door
Van Ark, Katie.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Swoon Reads, 2015.
Physical Description:
347 pages ; 21 cm
Neighbors and figure skating partners since preschool, Gabe and Maddy tell, in their separate voices, of changes on and off the ice when they are assigned a new, romantic program, raising Maddy's hopes of her love being returned and Gabe's fears that romance will break up their partnership.
Reading Level:
HL 640 Lexile.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
Y FICTION Young Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Y FICTION Young Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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Maddy Spier has been in love with the boy next door forever. As his figure skating partner she spends time in his arms every day. But she's also seen his arms around other girls - lots of other girls. Gabe can't imagine skating with anyone but Maddy, and together they have a real chance at winning some serious gold medals. So, he's determined to keep thinking of her like a sister. After all, he's never had a romantic relationship that lasted for more than two weeks. But when their coach assigns a new romantic skating program, everything changes. Will this be the big break that Maddy's been hoping for or the big breakup that Gabe has always feared?

Author Notes

Katie Van Ark is a member of SCBWI and RWA and a student at Vermont College of Fine Arts. She enjoys reading, writing, and of course figure skating. She lives in Michigan with two daughters, two cats, and one very patient husband who was also her high school sweetheart. The Boy Next Door is her debut novel.

Reviews 1

School Library Journal Review

Gr 9 Up-Fans of ice-skating and romance will fall in love with this debut novel. Maddy and Gabe, both seniors at Riverview Prep in Kansas, grew up next door to one another and have been figure skating as a pair since they were in preschool; Gabe even gave up a place on a championship hockey team to skate with Maddy. The two are close friends and practice for hours every day. Their relationship was just fine until trainer Igor asked them to do Romeo and Juliet as a long program. Gabe considers Maddy to be like a sister and at first, he's not interested in even pretending to be in love with her. Maddy, nursing a secret crush, would like nothing more than a romance to develop with Gabe. As they prepare for the competition, the two friends toy with the idea of dating. As Gabe's past relationships have only lasted two weeks or less, he worries about what will happen if this one doesn't work. Could he lose skating and his friend? Underlying the frothy plot are some serious themes and issues, including sex, pregnancy, cancer, money problems, family stress, lies, and complicated relationships. The straighforward writing and compelling "will they, won't they" plot will keep YA readers eagerly turning the pages. VERDICT For unapologetic romance lovers, this is a first purchase.-Jesten Ray, Seattle Public Library, WA (c) Copyright 2015. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



"You got this, Mad," I whisper to her. "Do it again."She nods, and her face reminds me of her dad, the way he looks on his campaign billboards. Eyes focused, chin set. A look that says you can trust him to get whatever job needs doing done. Mad takes her crossovers. She pushes. She jumps. One-two-three and there's the extra half rotation and on the landing, her knee's bent so low she's almost doing a backward shoot-the-duck but by some miracle of anything and everything holy-She. Stands. Up.I have officially lost the triple Axel contest. I will never live this down, but I'm so psyched for Mad that I don't give even a bucket of Zamboni sludge. Mad's screaming and I'm screaming and Kate and Chris have forgotten whatever the hell they were fighting about this time. Mad throws her arms around me and I hug her back. Over her shoulder I see Igor watching, smiling , as our club mates pile on us in a massive group hug. Mad's landed her triple Axel. I am not worthy to tie her skates, but for some reason she's still my partner. No, not some random, unknown reason. In the middle of the celebratory huddle with Mad, her body pressed full frontal against mine with her arms around me and her face buried in my neck, I know the reason she's still my partner. And I also know that whatever I do, I can't lose Mad. Excerpted from The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.