Lola Carlyle’s 12-Step Romance Spoiler

lolaThe Short and Sweet:  

Does anyone major die?: Nope. Everyone lives, despite some close calls.

Who ends up together?: Lola ends up with Adam, her counselor.

The Detailed Spoiler: Lola is a rich teenage girl whose mother and father are divorced. Her MIA dad is a big wig movie director and her soap opera actress mother cheated on him with some random lady who she now lives with. Lola feels unloved and unnoticed by her parents. The book opens with her best friend, Sydney, calling her from a posh rehab facility. Sydney tries to convince Lola to join her in rehab by telling her its almost like a spa. Lola isn’t swayed until Sydney mentions that her long time crush, Wade, is also there. Lola has had a major thing for Wade since they met on the set of one of her father’s movies during happier times. She finally agrees to go and fakes being an alcoholic so that her mother will send her off. Once Lola arrives at the facility, she realizes that its not as luxurious as she was told. Dr. Koch, the director of the rehab facility, informs Lola that they work on a ‘level system’ and she is the lowest level, meaning she can’t leave the premises. Lola is bummed, but the doctor (who is very shady and easily swayed because he likes the fame that having star children like Lola at his facility gains him) tells her that he has secretly moved her up to a level 2 so she may have more privileges. Still expecting lavish treatment, Lola begins to get settled in. She meets Adam, a guidance counselor, and he immediately makes it clear that he thinks she is spoiled and an addict who needs to stop being pampered. Lola is forced to undergo an initial evaluation with a doctor, which she hates. After that, shes taken to her room where she realizes she has to share with two other girls. Talia, who is almost too friendly, and Jade, who doesn’t talk. Her room mates inform her that Lola is taking the place of the roommate who just left…which is Sydney. Lola freaks out that Sydney isn’t there anymore, but decides to stay because its the ‘brave’ thing to do. Adam comes to take Lola to her first one on one therapy session and she ends up tricking him and running away so she doesn’t have to go. As she is running, she finds Jade singing and realizes that her ‘no talk’ thing is an act. She uses that to blackmail her and get Jade’s Level 3 access to leave the building and go into the courtyard. She goes searching for Wade in the boy’s dorm and almost gets caught. She ducks into the men’s bathroom where she runs into Wade.  He doesn’t recognize her and they flirt. Lola decides to not remind him who she is and instead kisses him. She runs into Adam afterwards and is scared that he will know she didn’t go to therapy, but he doesn’t. After dinner, Talia invites Lola to group therapy, but she declines. She tries to call Sydney but is told she doesn’t have phone privileges at her level. Lola is woken up by a 6 o clock alarm the next morning, then goes to confront Adam with how unhappy she is. They argue and she dumps coffee on his binder. As a result, she’s sent to solitary confinement. Adam comes, they talk, and Lola gets released from solitary. She then realizes she might have a crush on Adam. She goes to group that night and makes up stories about being an alcoholic so that no one knows she’s faking it. She goes to group therapy classes, and along the way she lies to everyone around her about her relationship with her father. She acts as if he loves her and spoils her when in actuality he doesn’t talk to her anymore. She and Jade continue to not get along. Lola eventually bribes Dr. Koch to give her a Level 3 pass by promising him premiere tickets to her father’s next movie. She continues to ditch on her one on one therapy sessions and decides to go for a swim in the pool now that she is Level 3. Adam finds her and they end up having a deep talk about Adam’s past and why he is a counselor. Adam also tells her she has to go to one on one therapy and he is escorting her to her next meeting so she can’t ditch. At her next group therapy, she runs into Wade on the beach and he tells her he remembers who she is. They flirt more. Lola tries to go to Dr. Koch to get out of one on one therapy, but Adam shows up and tells Dr. Koch how Lola has been ditching. Adam ends up tricking Lola into showing up for one on one therapy with the psychologist known as ‘Madam’. Lola actually experiences her first ‘real’ therapy session and she hates it because it forces her to look into her emotions and real issues. Lola goes to a co-ed group meeting and tries to tell everyone she isn’t an alcoholic, then she runs out. She runs into Adam who tells her that a parent is the only person who can get her out of rehab. She tries calling her mom, who is randomly out of the country and her will not come to get her out . She and Adam go for a walk afterwards and he tells her that she might be an addict, just not the type she thinks. She says she doesn’t think she needs therapy. She goes to more one on one therapy, then calls Sydney. Sydney is partying and Lola’s dad is there. Sydney hands the phone to Lola and she can’t talk to him because she gets too emotional, so he hangs up thinking that there is no one on the line. Lola almost kisses Wade the next time she sees him, but Adam comes and gets jealous. Eventually, Lola tries calling her dad again and is able to talk to him this time. They argue and she cries when she gets off the phone. It is obvious that she wants her dad to show he loves her. Adam sees this and comforts her. Lola goes to get a massage and can’t go through with it because she is overwhelmed from her stress over her relationship with her father. she runs away from the massage and Adam comes to her rescue. He takes her off campus to a coffee shop so she has a minute to relax and tell him about her issues with her father. Adam confesses to Lola that he is attracted to her. He is upset because it is wrong, and gets even more upset when Lola tells him she feels the same way. They go back to the rehab center and Lola continues with day to day activities while struggling with her feelings for Adam and Wade. She has more one on one therapy, where she continues to discover more about her real feelings.  Adam begins acting like a stranger to her.  She goes to group therapy, and Jade starts screaming at her and attacking her because she thinks Lola is a spoiled brat who only cares about herself. She also finds out that Talia has been stealing personal items from her behind her back. Upset that she can’t trust anyone, she runs away, smack dab into Adam. He tells her that he is turning off his attraction for her because he has to and Lola decides to talk to Dr. Koch about leaving. Dr. Koch tells her she can’t leave therapy and she realizes that he can be a scary man when it comes to keeping celebrity kids at his facility. She eats a bunch of chocolate that was confiscated from her when she checked in and then goes to the beach. She runs into Wade. Lola decides to try and like Wade again to get her mind off of Adam. When she goes back to her room, Talia has returned her things and Lola has a good talk with both her and Jade. Adam tells her he wants to get reassigned so he isn’t her counselor anymore and she begs him not to. He says he will think about it. Lola and a group of kids, including Talia and Jade, get to go to Disneyland. When Lola sees Wade will be there she doesn’t feel the butterflies that she is used to feeling. Wade kisses her on one of the rides and she tries to tell him she doesn’t want to, but the ride ends before she gets the chance. This happens a few more times and Lola realizes that Adam is very upset about it. He takes one of the kids to go use the restroom, leaving Lola, Jade, Talia, and Wade unsupervised. Wade convinces her to walk off with him, where she tells him she isn’t interested. He is nonchalant about it and walks away.  Lola is worried about letting an addict walk away. She goes to get Talia and Jade to help find him when she realizes that they are gone. She finds them with two random guys. Chaos ensues and Jade ends up doing some sort of drug. Talia ends up naked and Lola tries to help them all. The police come and its a big mess. They find Jade unresponsive in a pile of her own vomit. Jade lives, but Lola is really shaken up about it. Unfortunately, the media caught it all on tape. Dr. Koch wants everyone to lie so the media doesn’t think his facility is a sham. They are going to have a public meeting so that the group from Disneyland can lie to everyone. Lola and Adam have a big fight because of her decisions at the theme park, and he tells her Dr. Koch is planning on firing him and publicly blaming him for the whole incident since it was he who left them unnatended. Lola stands up at the meeting and tells the whole truth about what happened there. She is honest and Dr. Koch tries to make her look bad. Lola’s dad stands up and defends Lola. Her parents start fighting and Lola stops everyone. She tells the complete truth about her feelings with her dad and then the truth about how and why she entered rehab. When she is done, she walks to the beach where Adam finds her. He tells her she is being kicked out of the facility and he is no longer her mentor. Then he kisses her. Lola realizes that he loves her and they can be together. The story ends with Lola taking off her clothes and swimming into the ocean. She reflects briefly on how raw she feels after everything, but also how good it feels to be loved and get to start over.

My Feelings: I didn’t like that Lola was so snotty for a good chunk of the book, but the longer the book went on, the more I came to appreciate her personal growth. It was easy to see that Lola just wanted a good relationship with her parents, her father in particular. It was obvious to me as a reader that she needed to be in therapy even though she wasn’t an alcoholic. I appreciated that she didn’t easily make friends at the rehab facility, too. Instead of Talia and Jade turning out to be perfect sidekicks, they were also tortured souls and that made it more believable to me. I was a little unimpressed with the relationship between Lola and Adam. I did think it was inappropriate as well as unbelievable that they would end up together. I mean, in ‘real life’, Adam would probably get in huge trouble and spend some jail time for a relationship like that. The YA romance fan in me was happy that they had a happy ending, but the realistic me was like, “Gross.”. All in all, it wasn’t a bad read, but it was far from the type of story that I would want to be immersed in.  It had a good theme of self discovery and I think that is what saved it for me in the end. Good job, Lola Carlyle…you grew up.

My Review Post for this Book: Lola Carlyle’s 12-Step Romance Review

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I read all of the things and I write some of them, too.

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