Review: Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

Twenty Boy SummerDetails:  Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

  • Pub. Date: May 2010
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Format: Paperback , 290pp
  • Sales Rank: 33,165
  • Age Range: Young Adult

Synopsis:

“Don’t worry, Anna. I’ll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the best way to do it.”
“Okay.”
“Promise me? Promise you won’t say anything?”
“Don’t worry.” I laughed. “It’s our secret, right?”
According to her best friend Frankie, twenty days in Zanzibar Bay is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy ever day, there’s a pretty good chance Anna will find her first summer romance. Anna lightheartedly agrees to the game, but there’s something she hasn’t told Frankie—-she’s already had that kind of romance, and it was with Frankie’s older brother, Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.
Beautifully written and emotionally honest, this is a debut novel that explores what it truly means to love someone and what it means to grieve, and ultimately, how to make the most of every single moment this world has to offer.

My Thoughts:

This is a very touching and sad book for many different reasons in my book.  The introduction is Anna kind of reliving her birthday and the first kiss from her best friend, Frankie’s, older brother, who she has been secretly in love with since she was twelve.  Their story of sneaking around and sharing hidden kisses is touching and reminded me of what young love is all about.  Matt begged Anna not to tell his sister that he would be the one to do it and then he died suddenly from a heart condition no one knew about and both girls are left devastated   Flash forward one year, Frankie and Anna are going to go on the vacation of a lifetime together where Frankie’s family has been vacationing for years and the memories of Matt and haunting everyone.  Frankie puts out the challenge of 20 boys, 10 each while they are gone.  Will they make the count?
This story was super hard to read at times because both girls were hurting so much yet neither could or would talk to each other.  This is a true story of love, loss and healing.  There are many extreme lows for both girls but how they respond is just how you would expect.  They rebel and do some things there never would.  Sarah Ockler has a great connection with the teen world and what is reasonable and not reasonable to happen.  I loved the descriptions of the ocean and beach and the sea glass.  This was one of my favorite parts of the book.  Also, the growth both girls has during this summer. Oh to be young again.
The only frustration with the book was the ending it was just too abrupt for my taste.  I wanted to know how these girls were going to repair their somewhat broken relationship as all the truth came tumbling out.   

My Rating:

Good story – it touches the heart and is a true reflection of love and loss as a teen.
 
*I was given this book from another blogger.  All opinions are mine.