Twenty Boy Summer
Author: Sarah Ockler
“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.
I have to admit that I love a good summer love story and I thought Twenty Boy Summer had potential, but ultimately, it left me feeling unsatisfied. Like when you eat a burger because you are craving it, but after you are done, you realize that wasn’t truely what you wanted…
The premise sounded interesting – two teenages on a summer vacation, finding themselves, coping with the death of a loved one (brother/secret boyfriend). But while I liked Anna as a character for the most part, Frankie drove me absolutely nuts. I understand that people cope with their grief in different ways and this was the way that the author choose for her, but she almost seemed mentally unstable at times…and she obviously wasn’t getting the support that she needed from her family because she was relying on her best friend. Her best friend that had been keeping a secret from her for the better part of a year.
I don’t agree with Anna keeping her secret, especially after Matt died, but at the same time, I can understand why. Her best friend had lost her brother, could she really step up and say, I lost him too…I just wish that the resolution between her and Frankie had been more definite – it just kind of happened. The ending was also just blah…I wish I had known what happened to her and the guys who worked at the Ice Cream Shack – did they stay in touch, did her relationship with the one last beyond the summer…I liked him and hope that it did…
That being said, I do think that the author has potential and I’ll likely seek out another book by her in the future to see if I feel the same way about her writing