I read this book last summer and just now realized I had never posted a review about it because I was talking about how much I was looking forward to reading the sequel, It’s Not Summer Without You. Well, I can’t just leave it that way! So, I am going to do my best to do this book justice even though it’s been so long since I read it — after refreshing my memory by reading a few reviews in Publisher’s Weekly, SLJ and VOYA, of course! (LOL)
Belly’s mom and her best friend, Susannah, have always shared a beach house and the responsibilities of raising their children during the summer. Susannah’s boys, Conrad and Jeremy, have always treated Belly pretty much the same as her brother, Steven, did. She was just “the annoying little sister,” as far as the boys were concerned. But, things change the summer Belly turns 16. Suddenly, life at the beach house is not so simple. Conrad and Jeremy have begun to look at her differently, and Belly’s not sure how to handle her evolving feelings for the boys, either.
Han creates a very lovable and believable character in Belly, much like she did in Shug. Readers can’t help but root for Belly as she works through the self-consciousness and confusion that come with adolescence. This summer romance has a bit more substance than some, but definitely not so much that it gets bogged down or boring.