16 June 2013

That Summer by Sarah Dessen

That Summer
by Sarah Dessen

For fifteen-year-old Haven-tall, lanky, bordering on six feet-it's a summer framed by two weddings: her father's to Lorna Queen (the "Weather Pet" of the local TV station) and her sister's to dull-as-dishwater Lewis Warsher, a boy Haven can't imagine plucky Ashley being attracted to. Nothing seems stable except Haven's memories-especially those of the summer when Ashley dated Sumner Lee, who made her parents laugh and loosened Ashley up. Around Sumner, even Haven felt special. Suddenly Sumner reappears in her life, a link to that perfect past-and her future.

Sarah Dessen has always been one of my favourite contemporary writers. I've read quite a few of her books and I was really looking forward to this one. I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would, but I didn't not enjoy it. It's strange. Maybe it's because of how short the book is that I just didn't feel like I got to connect with the characters and have a lot of emotions towards them, or maybe it's just because I didn't really like it. I'm not too sure which one it is.

So this story revolves around our main character Haven who is clutching on to the past. Her mother and father are divorced, her father is getting remarried, her and her sister have grown apart and her sister is also getting married. Haven's life is changing very quickly but she can't seem to let go of the past and that one summer.

Overall, I thought the storyline of this was alright, the character were OK - they didn't annoy me too much, but I didn't really have much of a connection with any of them - and the writing style made it easy for me to fly through this book.

I'm kind of on the fence with Haven's character. There were times when she annoyed me - like when she was only thinking about herself when there were a lot of other important things going on - and there were times where I liked her. But I did think she was kind of selfish. 
Her sister Ashley kind of annoyed me as well. She was so focused on herself and the wedding that she didn't care about anyone or anything else. I kind of understood that, but at the same time I didn't like it.

I found it really creepy that Haven - who is 15 - was hanging about with Ashley's ex-boyfriend Sumner - who's like 21-22ish. I just didn't like that. Mainly because I thought something was going to happen between them and it was going to be really creepy. She was kind of obsessed with him and the summer that she had with him and Ashley. I just really wanted her to forget the past and try to move on and accept the future.

I didn't understand why the storyline with the supermodel was thrown in. It added absolutely nothing to the story and was just really pointless.

Overall, I did kind of enjoy this book but it's definitely one I will not be reading again.


  1. This book sounds interesting, but that age gap is creepy. I'm sorry you didn't enjoy it more. I like a lot of Dessen books but I haven't read this one.

    1. It was creepy. I like a lot of her books as well, this was just one that I didn't like.