That Summer

That Summer
by Sarah Dessen
read by Mia Barron
Published 2009 by Listening Library
4 hours, 39 minutes. Unabridged.
Rating: 3/5

For fifteen-year-old Haven, there’s just too much going on. First, there’s her father’s wedding to Lorna Queen, the local television “Weather Pet.” The, her sister Ashley’s wedding to boring Lewis Warsher, who doesn’t seem to suit Ashley at all. And Haven can’t ignore the fact that she’s nearly six feet tall and still growing. Haven can barely figure out who she is anymore, or where she fits in. Then Ashley’s old boyfriend, Sumner Lee, shows up and sparks Haven’s memories of the summer when her parents were happy, her sister was plucky and carefree, and everything was perfect… or so it seemed.

I can’t enough of Sarah Dessen, and this was a special treat because it’s one of the books that the movie How to Deal is based on. I love that movie, and pretty much everything else that Mandy Moore is in. It was so nice to the family from that movie in its book setting. It was a little different since Halley and Haven aren’t the same person, but I liked it all the same.

Haven is a pretty naive character, but that comes with being fifteen years old. She hasn’t really experienced life in a way gives real knowledge. Her angst is a perfect example of that. I have to say Ashley was just as insufferable as she is in the movie. She’s incredibly selfish and I was amazed Haven could keep her mouth shut as long as she did. The plot was interesting and kept me listening. I have to say, I guessed what had happened between Sumner and Ashley before Haven ever found out. And still, when she was told, she just couldn’t believe it. I was surprised that it didn’t really change how I felt about Sumner. I think he understood his mistakes and felt guilty. It was a good book, and I’m eager to read Someone Like You, the other half of the inspiration behind the How to Deal movie.

Source: Homewood Public Library. Homewood, AL.
Author’s website:
Purchased: Book Depository

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