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.
“It’s the imperfections that make things beautiful.”
Anything can happen in a summer. Especially as a teenager when there’s nothing but opportunities ahead, opportunities for firsts. First kisses, first romances, first loves. That’s what Belly experienced in the summer she turned pretty.
Every summer, Belly goes to Cousins Beach with her mom, brother, and their close family friends, Jeremiah and Conrad. She’s basically grown up with these boys, but there’s something more, a secret love she harbors, and this summer, the summer she turns 16, the summer she’s finally grown into herself, this summer everything can change.
I had really high hopes going into this one because I enjoyed Han’s To All The Boys series so much. I thought that this would be a really fun, light summer read. However, that was spoiled by how selfish and immature Belly struck me as.
Belly seems to spend the entire book trying to be mature, a girl who kisses her boyfriend (apparently never being kissed at age 13 makes you soooo immature), wants to go skinny dipping, and wants to drive before she’s of age. BUT THEN she almost throws a fit when people don’t go along with her crazy schemes, and thinks everyone’s behavior is because of her??
AND don’t even get me started on the love “triangle.” Which was really more of a love square because there are three love interests? Why three people all like this girl is beyond me. But I honestly didn’t ship Belly with any of the guys–none of them gave me the feelies!–and I thought that she treated her boyfriend terribly!
With that being said, Belly aside, there were some things I liked about this book. It was a really easy, fun read. I read it all in one sitting, and it’s a fun book to fly through in the summer and just give you good vibes.
I liked most of the characters besides Belly! The two moms–Belly’s and Jeremiah/Conrad’s–were wonderful characters, and I love how they were such good moms, but still friends themselves and good characters. I liked all three of the love interests as well by themselves (just not with Belly!).
I was pretty surprised by the ending as well. It put a new perspective on the entire book, and gave it more depth and emotion.
2 out of 5 sunny summer stars
You can also read my review on Goodreads here.
PS: Brownie points for Belly because she wants to see a blue footed booby and let’s be real, who doesn’t? Hooray for the blue footed boobies!!