Author: Sarah Dessen
Rating: 6 out of 10
Summary (Goodreads, you are just too much!): Luke is the perfect boyfriend: handsome, kind, fun. He and Emaline have been together all through high school in Colby, the beach town where they both grew up. But now, in the summer before college, Emaline wonders if perfect is good enough.
Enter Theo, a super-ambitious outsider, a New Yorker assisting on a documentary film about a reclusive local artist. Theo's sophisticated, exciting, and, best of all, he thinks Emaline is much too smart for Colby.
Emaline's mostly-absentee father, too, thinks Emaline should have a bigger life, and he's convinced that an Ivy League education is the only route to realizing her potential. Emaline is attracted to the bright future that Theo and her father promise. But she also clings to the deep roots of her loving mother, stepfather, and sisters. Can she ignore the pull of the happily familiar world of Colby?
Emaline wants the moon and more, but how can she balance where she comes from with where she's going?
Sarah Dessen's devoted fans will welcome this story of romance, yearning, and, finally, empowerment. It could only happen in the summer.
Thoughts: Sooo...the cover is pretty and has a great colour sheme...
Okay, so it wasn't the worst book I've ever read but at times it felt like. I love Sarah Dessen. I have every one of her books. Of all of them, this one is my least favourite. This novel was totally opposite of all her other novels. The others are love stories but this one is more about growing out of the being in love. I was expecting a much cuter story. I was said when I didn't get it. I mean, it makes sense that she doesn't want to write the same story over and over again but I didn't think that it would be like this.
I thought the writing was perfect. I also, oddly, enjoyed learning the big SAT words that she kind of makes fun of at some parts. There was also a lot of wit to be enjoyed. Every once and a while there would be a great and funny moment. It wasn't necessarily laugh out loud funny but it did get a smile out of me. I especially enjoyed when the margarita machine showed up and they had to assemble and move it. It was a funny little scene followed by another that raised the rating for this novel. I live for those scenes. They totally saved this novel for me. Without them, I probably wouldn't have finished reading the book.
I think Sarah Dessen did a good job with the characters too. I wanted to hit Emaline's father, often. I thought Daisy was a great best friend. I loved Luke. Not only do I love that name but he was great. Other than one incident he was perfect. I would rather Emaline be with Luke than Theo. I wanted to get rid of Theo. I didn't like him one bit. He was kind of annoying and I cannot believe that Emaline didn't see it and get rid of him. Love is stupid, I guess. The parts with Theo in them were really hard to read because, like I said, he was annoying but there was also something about him that made me just want to drive a spike through his head. It would have been the nauseating optimism which I lack but he had in abundance. I don't know what it was really but I didn't like it nor did I like him at all. Benji, on the other hand, I enjoyed a lot. He was a great kid and it totally made sense to me that he would feel the way he did. I'm glad Emaline stood up for him in the end; they were great together. I'm not sure I would have been so helpful with him as Emaline was. She was super nice to do all she did for him.
Thank God the last 35 pages were better than the first 400.
Final Thoughts: It was a pretty easy read but I expected a lot more from this novel. Of all the Sarah Dessen books, this one is for sure my least favourite one. I wish it had been like the others. I might not read it again but this novel won't stop me from buying Sarah Dessen novels in the future. I still love her.
"It's a toaster oven," I said, "Not the proletariat."
"Some people would say disappointment is a good thing to learn young."
"True," he agreed, "But some people are assholes."
"I explained that texting means you don't have to talk to people, which turned out to be a concept he could really get behind."