Hi fellow bookworms!
Today’s book review will be a little bit different to normal – I have decided to split the review into two sections: the first being ‘What I Liked’ about the book, and the second ‘What I Didn’t Like’. With work experience going on this week, I’ve been a little too busy to write a full review.
The Summer I Turned Pretty
The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han
Belly measures her life in summers. Everything good, everything magical happens between the months of June and August. Winters are simply a time to count the weeks until the next summer, a place away from the beach house, away from Susannah, and most importantly, away from Jeremiah and Conrad. They are the boys that Belly has known since her very first summer–they have been her brother figures, her crushes, and everything in between. But one summer, one terrible and wonderful summer, the more everything changes, the more it all ends up just the way it should have been all along.
What I Liked
- The flashbacks – There are several flashbacks throughout the book, to previous summers at the beach house. I liked this as it added a sense of nostalgia.
- The cuteness – This book is so cute haha!
- The fact that it makes a great beach read – The Summer I Turned Pretty has the perfect combination of cute boys, sunshine, first love, and the beach.
- Susanna – I’d say that Susanna is the most likeable character in this book. She is so lovely and sweet, and almost like a second mother to Belly.
- Jeremiah – Another likeable character. He’s easy-going and seems like a fun person to be with.
- The simple premise – It’s basically a book about a girl who returns to her annual holiday destination a bit more grown-up, and all the boys suddenly notice her. A bit silly, but easy to follow.
What I Didn’t Like
- Belly – I really did want to like her (I mean, she is the protagonist) but she was just so immature. She gets jealous so easily and keeps obsessing over the one guy (grrrr). Belly is also disrespectful and rude towards her mother and best friend. It doesn’t help that I’m not so keen on the name ‘Belly’ either (it makes her seem five!).
- Conrad – A bit of a shame really, but Conrad was such a difficult character. He seemed very closed-off and rude. I couldn’t understand why Belly was attracted to him.
- “For me there was – is – nothing better than walking on the beach late at night. It feels like you could walk forever, like the whole night is yours and so is the ocean.”
- “We stood there, looking at each other, saying nothing. But it was the kind of nothing that meant everything.”
- “For me, it was almost like winter didn’t count. Summer was what mattered. My whole life was measured in summers.”
- “I love Conrad and I probably always would. I would spend my whole life loving him one way or another. Maybe I would get married, maybe I would have a family, but it wouldn’t matter, because a piece of my heart, the piece where summer lived, would always be Conrad’s”.
At the beginning of the book, there’s a quote from the author Sarah Dessen, which says “This book has what every girl wants in a summer.” To some extent, I’d agree with Sarah. However, the fact that Belly and Conrad are so infuriating stops the book from reaching its full potential. Having said that, there is a teeny part of me that is curious to find out what happens in the next book. Perhaps I will pick it up on day…