I received this book for free from NOVL in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
TITLE: The Summer of Us
AUTHOR: Cecilia Vinesse
PUBLICATION DATE: June 5, 2018
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A swoon-worthy story about five best friends on a whirlwind trip through Europe, perfect for fans of Jenny Han, Stephanie Perkins, and Jennifer E. Smith.
American expat Aubrey has only two weeks left in Europe before she leaves for college, and she's nowhere near ready. Good thing she and her best friend, Rae, have planned one last group trip across the continent. From Paris to Prague, they're going to explore famous museums, sip champagne in fancy restaurants, and eat as many croissants as possible with their friends Clara, Jonah, and Gabe.
But when old secrets come to light, Aubrey and Rae's trip goes from a carefree adventure to a complete disaster. For starters, there's Aubrey and Gabe's unresolved history, complicated by the fact that Aubrey is dating Jonah, Gabe's best friend. And then there's Rae's hopeless crush on the effortlessly cool Clara. How is Rae supposed to admit her feelings to someone so perfect when they're moving to different sides of the world in just a few weeks?
Author Cecilia Vinesse delivers a romantic European adventure that embraces the magic of warm summer nights, the thrill of first kisses, and the bittersweet ache of learning to say goodbye to the past while embracing the future.
Setting the Scene:
7 Word Summary
Fun adventure filled with drama and reality.
Mood Before Reading
Just finished finals week and need a pick me up.
The Summer of Us is about a group of friends, two girls, Aubrey and Rae, in particular, and their journey across Europe during the summer after their senior year of high school. What makes this story unique is its distinctive blend of tv-like drama and events rooted in emotional reality. I’ve never been on a cross-continent trip with my friends and thought some of the events that occurred were a bit far-fetched, but Aubrey and Rae’s story is just so relatable.
I think The Summer of Us touches upon some feelings and issues that aren’t talked about often in YA, mainly the idea of drifting apart from close friends. It was both heartbreaking and heartwarming to read about what Aubrey and Rae are going through and perfectly captures the feeling that occurs between high school graduation and the start of a new adventure.
Aubrey and Rae were the essential cornerstones of this novel. It was interesting to see the same events unfold in their own point of views. They are pretty different, but it was surprisingly easy to connect and empathize with both of them. Usually, I have a favorite character or point of view, but with The Summer of Us I can’t just pick one. That being said, there were a few times when both of them just made me so frustrated and want to give each of them a friendly shake.
I loved everything about The Summer of Us except maybe the romance. I thought all the romance was a bit cliche and thus the cause of the reality tv-like drama. It was fun and kept things entertaining (I could not stop flipping the pages), but it made me want to facepalm way too many times.
The Summer of Us is a fun summer read that maintains a good balance between fun drama and emotional reality. Its main characters and romantic elements are both likable and frustrating all at once. I’d highly recommend this to any recent high school grads.