The Summer I Turned Pretty
By Jenny Han
Series: Book 1 in the Summer Trilogy
Age Range: 14+
Grade Level: 8th grade
Pages: 276 (in British paperback)
Publisher: Razor Bill/ Penguin
This book is about a girl who goes to a summer house every year with her brother and her mom's best friend's two sons. She has bee in love with one of the sons for forever, and the other is just a really good friend of hers. This summer is different because she has "turned pretty" over the school year. The boys finally start to notice her. Anything could happen, but one this is for sure: it is going to be a summer she will never forget.
I have been in a reading slump lately, and I was just not reading like I usually do. I was reading MASSIVE books, or school books, and it was just not very enjoyable. I had absolutely no motivation to read, and I was starting to miss it. To combat the reading slump, I decided to pick up the fluffiest contemporary that I knew I would like, so I picked up The Summer I Turned Pretty. Just from the title you knew this was going to be really cheesy, but that was exactly what I wanted, so no complaints.
I really enjoyed Belly's character, and she was never overly annoying. Yes, she did think she was going to cry a lot, but I got over that. She did seem somewhat logical with her romances with the boys, and that is always a good thing. I never really had to groan to things she said, and she was pretty witty and snarky when it came down to it. I could really identify myself with her character, and I could [somewhat] understand the decisions she would make.
The story was not what I was expecting, and I really thought that the romance would be completely with the two brothers, but instead Belly met a boy, and had a fling with him. I adored how the two brothers were so protective over her, and they acted like overprotective big brothers (even if they were more than that to Belly). I thought the interactions between Jeremiah and Belly were fantastic.
On the romance, I thought it was very well done, and natural (no I love you on the first date). You could really see it develop as you would hope any high school romance would. Jenny Han really has a way with making romances feel real.
Lets be honest here, I want belly to end up with Jeremiah because he was never an ass-clown to her, and Jeremiah was always there for her. A good romance starts with a better friendship.
Drugs: Some drinking. Mostly socially at dinner, and very few times to get drunk
Violence: Fighting between brothers- once
Language: Very minimal