Monday, May 09, 2011

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

Title: The Summer I Turned Pretty
Series: Summer #1
Author: Jenny Han
Release Date: May 5, 2009
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Children's Publishing
Source: Library
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.
Review: I’d been seeing this book around the blogosphere for ages. People loved this book and when I asked around, they said that I had to read this book. I took their advice and checked out this book. The bloggers were right because I absolutely loved this book. Jenny Han wrote the first book a trilogy that I can’t wait to read more of. The Summer I Turned Pretty deserved all the praise it got and more!

It’s seems like the typical summer story. The girl has known guys for her whole life but after she changes over a school year, the guys see her in a different light for the first time. Han, though, with her wonderful writing and characters, puts a unique blend into her story to make it shine above those other stories. There were plenty of background to go along with the story and the characters that I wasn’t confused at all. The background stories actually helped move the story along. It also gave a good feel of who each character was and what they were like.

I loved Han’s way of writing. She writes such vivid images and parts of the story almost made me cry. She’s got a strong sense of characterization that made her characters so different from other contemporary because they were so unique. I also felt that she had some sort of a poetic writing style. The words and phrases and the way she put them together made them sound so beautiful.

This book has some of the best characters I’ve read about in a while. All of them seemed so real and ordinary that I found it hard to believe that they weren’t real. As said, the history behind the characters helped me distinguished who was who and what they were like. Belly was so well written! Han portrayed Belly’s age so realistically: the point where you’re older than how people treat you. Belly’s sense of insecurity and her feeling inferior about growing up with boys was really great. I could really relate to Belly because I’m the same age as her and I go through some of the same thought processes. Conrad and Jeremiah and Steven were great guys and I loved each of them in their own way. I have to say, though, I’m a Conrad fan.

The romance, the heart break, the beach, the boys and a long summer is what The Summer I Turned Pretty is made up of. Don’t let that fool you, though, because this book has heart. It’s a well written book that’ll make you think, make you laugh, make you cry, and everything else in between. I highly recommend this book. I know I’ll be starting It’s Not Summer Without You and We’ll Always Have Summer, book two and three of this trilogy, soon!

Overall: 5/5
Cover: 5/5 Yet another cover with Belly and the boys!

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