Mundie Moms

Thursday, August 4, 2016

It's Not Summer Without You by Jenny Han / Throwback Thursday: Book Review

By: Jenny Han
Published by: Simon and Schuster
Released on: May 4, 2011
Series: The Summer I Turned Pretty #2
Purchase from:  AmazonBarnes and Noble  IndieBound| iBooks Book Depository
Add it to: Goodreads
Rating: 4 stars - I enjoyed it

Can summer be truly summer without Cousins Beach? It used to be that Belly counted the days until summer, until she was back at Cousins Beach with Conrad and Jeremiah. But not this year. Not after Susannah got sick again and Conrad stopped caring. Everything that was right and good has fallen apart, leaving Belly wishing summer would never come.

But when Jeremiah calls saying Conrad has disappeared, Belly knows what she must do to make things right again. And it can only happen back at the beach house, the three of them together, the way things used to be. If this summer really and truly is the last summer, it should end the way it started--at Cousins Beach.

Soooooooo, let me just say that keeping this review spoiler free is going to be so hard to do, because on page two (PAGE TWO, you guys!) something happens that sets the tension of this book to OMGNOWAY. Yes, you read it right PAGE TWO. The thing that happens (bear with me, I am trying here) is not entirely unexpected, but it sets the tone for the rest of the book.

Okay, let me pause a second to say, that the love triangle will just never go away. In fact, it makes perfect sense. So as you turn pages you will find yourself loving Conrad, HATING CONRAD SO SO SO MUCH, and hoping (sometimes rather desperately) that Belly ends up with one or the other of the Fisher boys for reasons I can't even mention. GAH. I hate writing non-spoilery review when I have too much to discuss.

I guarantee that your emotions will be tugged in all directions with this story. There will be tears or at least a fairly deep sadness (I suggest a sugar rush only Belly would approve of as a remedy) and a sense of relief that maybe, just maybe we will get the ending that we all want. What ending is that, you ask? I don't even know. At the start, I was hoping that she would date Conrad, but by the end, I was hoping that the sweetness of Jeremiah would win her over.

Beyond the love triangle, Jenny writes a story of friendship between girls, Belly and Taylor and she documents the highs and lows all long standing friendships seem to experience. Their story makes you hope they will end up like Susannah and Laurel eventually. The friendships between the girls, the  two moms and the boys and Belly are gorgeously written. They feel extremely real, and in Jenny's hands you will feel all the emotions the characters are going through. One refreshing moment is that this book contains Jeremiah's point-of-view, so we get to see a little bit of what he's thinking as well.

We get to see Belly, in her junior year, go through loss and heartbreak. Will she ever get over her crush on Conrad? Will they even find him? Apply another layer of sunscreen, settle down on that beach towel, grab a Coke and cherry ICEE and enjoy a story about friendships, family and the crushes we can never quite leave behind. I'm definitely moving on to book 3, It's Not Summer Without You.


  1. Uuuugh. Love triangles :( Damn it. So not a series for me, haha :D Neeeever. Sigh. But ohh, I am glad you still liked this book a whole bunch :D Lovely review Sophie. <3

    1. I completely understand, BUT, this is a very credible love triangle only because they've grown up together, spending summers with each other from the time they are very small. The complications are also very believable. Jenny Han is such a good storyteller.