The Compulsive Reader: We'll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han

Sunday, May 1, 2011

We'll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han

I adore Jenny Han's Summer trilogy, which began with The Summer I Turned Pretty. The second book is It's Not Summer Without You, and it ended with the release of We'll Always Have Summer earlier this week. This is seriously my top summer/beach read pick, so please check out this trilogy--you won't be disappointed! Below is my review of We'll Always Have Summer...it doesn't have any spoilers from the book in it, but if you haven't read the previous books, you might want to hold off reading it!

Two years have passed since Belly began dating Jeremiah. They now go to the same college and Belly is incredibly happy with him, even if she does find herself thinking about Conrad now and again. So when Jeremiah shockingly proposes to Belly at the start of the summer, she immediately says yes. Suddenly Belly's days are full of wedding preparations at the beach house while simultaneously trying to pacify her mother and get along with Conrad. Belly is certain that she loves Jeremiah, but as the summer slips by, she has to ask herself if she's really in love with him...or still in love with Conrad.

We'll Always Have Summer is the perfect conclusion to Jenny Han's Summer trilogy. The two years since the second book's conclusion have given all of the characters room to grow up a little and find some happiness after the emotional tumult of Susannah's death. However, there are still plenty of pent-up feelings, emotions, and drama as the characters face the pain of her absence still two years later, and the consequences of their actions right after her death. The dynamics between Belly and Jeremiah are sweet and easy, but they are often overshadowed by the tension between her and Conrad and all that isn't being said. This builds throughout the wedding planning, which is fun, despite the knowledge that Belly may be getting married for the wrong reasons. Like in the previous two books, Belly's narrative is punctuated by plenty of memories at the beach house and the occasional chapter from one of the boy's perspectives, which keeps things interesting. The amazing setting of the beach house continues to stand out—it's more than just the descriptions of what it looks like. It's the feeling and atmosphere of the place that Han evokes so well in the reader that makes this entire trilogy so memorable. This is a beautiful, gut-wrenching, authentic book, with a perfect and wholly-satisfying ending. This trilogy is one that completely absorbs you, and finishing it will be at once bittersweet and gratifying.

Cover Comments: I love the brightness and simplicity of these covers. The font and the green grass are so pretty, and I like the implications of the girl's white dress. Beautiful!

Review copy provided by publisher.


Anonymous said...

You know, I never thought her relationship with Jeremiah was all that easy, more like she put up with a lot for him, they didn't make any waves and she was content.

Or maybe it's just that I finally liked Conrad in this book. :D

Frenchy Tari said...

I'm crazy about this trilogy ! I feel so excited to read the end, thanks for the review which make me... more excited !

Luxembourg said...

loved the setting Cousins beach. Its a bout a summer any girl could only dream about. My favourite is Conrad Fisher because he is so dark and secretive but loves belly so much its heart-breaking to see her with Jeramiah. He's different, he is her best friend and they love each other but in a family kind of way and conrad is perfect for her.