Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

Reading Level: Young Adult
# of Pages: 304 (Hardback)
Publisher: Little, Brown

“Don’t worry, Anna. I’ll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the
best way to do it.”

“Promise me? Promise you won’t say anything?”“Don’t worry.” I laughed.
“It’s our secret, right?”

According to Anna’s best friend, Frankie, twenty days in Zanzibar Bay
is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy
every 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 her romance, and it was with Frankie’s older brother,
Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.

TWENTY BOY SUMMER explores what it truly means to love someone, what it
means to grieve, and ultimately, how to make the most of every beautiful moment
life has to offer.

Some books hit very close to home and that makes them harder to read because you feel as if you truly are reliving an event and you can put yourself in that characters shoes with even more gusto than ever before. That, to me, is how I felt while reading this amazing book. When I was Anna’s age, my best friend was killed in a car wreck and dealing with the loss of that is something that you never come to terms with completely and Sarah Ockler has done an amazing job diving into the teenage psyche and trying to explain that through Anna.

I literally got this book in the mail, had testing so my students did that and I read the entire time (shhhhh), and I finished it the next day (while I was making my students read… again, shhhhh). I could not put it down. The story was written so well that I felt as if I were experiencing everything that Anna and Frankie were as they tried to cope with Matt’s loss in very different ways. Ockler has done an amazing job at showing how grief can completely captivate you and set you free all at the same time. Everything from the characters to the plot was beautifully written and I am so glad that this story was captured by such a talented writer. Every emotion was present while I was reading this book and now I have students on a waiting list for it. Superb job!!

Sarah is an amazing person for writing this book but also because she sent me some bookmarks (which I featured on my blog here) and has become a wonderful email buddy! Make sure you check out her site here for more info on her and her upcoming novel Fixing Delilah Hannaford which will be hitting bookshelves in the Fall. Here is the preview of that one!

Fixing Delilah Hannaford (Fall 2010)
Stuck in Vermont all summer with her workaholic mother, a Tarot-card-reading aunt, and a childhood friend who thinks he can fix anything, sixteen-year-old Delilah Hannaford confronts her elusive family history to expose the secrets that have defined and divided the Hannafords for three generations.

Happy reading all!

1 comment:

Sara said...

Awesome review, I can't believe I haven't gotten a chance to read this yet! Fixing Delilah Hannaford looks really good too!

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