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The Compulsive Reader: Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

Friday, May 29, 2009

Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler


Presenting Your Ideal Beach Read...

Anna's best friend Frankie is determined to make this summer their Absolute Best Summer Ever. To the outsider, it seems like it will be perfect: Frankie's family is taking Anna on their annual vacation to Zanzibar Bay, California and Frankie schemes to meet twenty different guys while they're there so she and Anna can have the perfect summer romance. But really, Anna and Frankie are still reeling from the loss of their best friend and Frankie's brother, Matt. And what Frankie doesn't know is that Anna's already had her perfect summer romance—with Matt.

Though outwardly fun and flirty, below the surface Sarah Ockler's Twenty Boy Summer is a reflective and insightful story of loss and discovery as well. Ockler does an excellent job at characterizing each person in her novel, even the most insignificant characters, making Anna's world tangible and realistic. The different portrayals of each person's grief—Anna's retreat into her journal, Frankie's recklessness, and her mother's withdrawal—are all apt and serve as one of the most significant elements of the novel as it causes conflicts and also enables each character to grow. Ockler's simple use of juxtaposition is also a striking element, and is a detail that really stands out. Twenty Boy Summer is a fun-filled, romantic book containing every girl's dream summer vacation, but made more meaningful by the grief and sadness that Matt left behind. It's wonderfully detailed and sensitive as it exploes the bonds of friendship, first (and second) love, loss, and ultimately learning to let go. Twenty Boy Summer is a definite summer must-read.

Cover Comments: Love, love this cover! It's so beachy and fun. The sea glass is a really nice touch that ties into the book, and I like the look of the boards that make up the background. I can just picture the beach whenever I look at it. Though the font of the title isn't my favorite, I like how the white stands out. This cover definitely gets my seal of approval!

2 comments:

harmonybookreviews said...

Ahh! You've made me more excited for this. Great review. I need to get myself a copy ASAP.

Janssen said...

Man, I've been really excited about this book and every new review I read makes me more anxious to read it.