Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han (Summer #1)

The Summer I Turned Pretty

Belly's favorite time of year has always been summer. Her, her brother Stephen, and her mom always spend the entire summer at Cousins Beach with Susannah, Conrad, and Jeremiah. Since she was a little girl Belly has been in love with Conrad, but he doesn't notice her that way. She has always been Steven's little sister, the tag along, the one to be avoided and looked after at the same time. This summer something is different. Belly is different and both boys can tell. This is the summer she turned pretty.
     Judging a book by its cover I thought that this would be a "fluff" novel. No substance, no deep emotion, and sickeningly sappy. I was wrong.This book has so much going for it. The Summer I Turned Pretty is the story of a girl growing up, the experiences that have led her to where she is now, and trying to get the boy she loves to love her back. This book really touched me and I can't put my finger on exactly why. I think it might be because its the story of a girl leaving childhood behind, realizing things are more complicated than they seem and learning that heartbreak is a part of life. Honestly I shed a few tears in this book. The only critique I have is that I'm not really a fan of flashbacks and this book is full of them. They do play an essential role though, they show the evolution of Belly's summers at Cousins Beach and how she came to be in this moment. Ms. Han delivers a book that will have a deeper meaning to women of all ages. It speaks to the life experiences we all go through; first love, growing up and leaving childhood behind, and entering that scary world of adulthood whether we are ready or not. This is a great book. Please give it a chance. I give this book a 4 1/2 STAR rating.
***The Summer I Turned Pretty Extras***
The Summer I Turned Pretty is by Jenny Han, contains 304 pages, and was published April 10, 2010 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. The next two books in the trilogy are It's Not Summer Without You and We'll Always Have Summer and are available now.

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