Release Date: May 5, 2009
Publisher: Simon & Schuster BFYR
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Some summers are just destined to be pretty
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 wonderful and terrible summer, the more everything changes, the more it all ends up just the way it should have been all along.
Belly's happiest times are her summers at the beach house with her mother, brother, Conrad, Jeremiah and their mother, Susannah. The difference between previous summers and now is that (hint: the title) more than one boy is starting to take notice of her.
When you see the title or read the synopsis, it doesn't really hint that there is more to the story than a summer vacation involving an unrequited love. There is a lot going on in the background that's only revealed in the last few chapters. Those chapters are the reason I want to know how the story continues.
I didn't understand why Belly loved summers so much, since it seems like the exact opposite most of the time. The only reason I got was Conrad. I found myself rooting for anybody, but Conrad because of his antisocial behavior until I found out the reason behind it. Then it all made sense and I felt guilty for thinking he's just another jerk with only hints of kindness now and again. That doesn't mean that he wasn't a jerk, just that it's the way he's dealing with the situation. Of course he could of handled it a little bit better like his brother Jeremiah, but Conrad is the type of guy that rarely shows any emotions and tries to completely ignore any deeper ones. Jeremiah was more likable with his funny ways and I'd hoped that Belly would fall for him. Now, I'm not so sure. I can't really picture her with Conrad or Jeremiah.
The ending of this book was unresolved and felt like the real beginning of the story for me. I hope to see the characters (Belly, Conrad & Jeremiah) mature in the next book.