Saturday, September 12, 2020

Book Review: "The Summer of Everything" by Julian Winters

When nothing in your life is going the way you want to, how do you find the courage to fight for it? Wesley Hudson needs to figure that out in Julian Winters' new YA novel, The Summer of Everything.

There’s one month left until Wes starts college. He needs to figure out what he wants to do with his life, because his father keeps suggesting potential college majors. But more than that, Wes is determined this will be the time he finally admits his feelings for his best friend, Nico. They have a month until Nico goes to Stanford and Wes goes to UCLA.

Wes can’t seem to find the courage to tell Nico how he feels, no matter how hard he tries. He's not even sure if Nico feels the same way about him anyway, so is it worth risking their friendship? To make matters worse, Wes’ beloved bookstore is on the verge of closing, and his older brother is getting married and his fiancé is hoping that the brothers can put their animosity aside. It's a lot of uncertainty and chaos for Wes to deal with, at a particularly stressful time.

As he tries to figure out how to save the bookstore with help of the motley crew of friends who work there, he needs to try and take action on everything else in his life, too. Will he succeed?

I was really hooked on this story. So many of us have had that crush on someone we care about and have felt totally paralyzed when it comes to expressing our feelings. Winters really captured those emotions, as you struggle to figure out whether what your heart wants and what your head tells you can mesh.

Winters creates such great, diverse characters you can see in your mind’s eye, and you root for them all the way. There was a lot going on in this book, and the truth is, I could have done without the brother storyline, but it helped show another dimension to Wes. But overall, this was such a good story, and I also recommend Winters' previous books, How to Be Remy Cameron and Running with Lions.

I was fortunate to be part of the blog tour for this book. Interlude Press and Storygram Tours provided me a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review. Thanks for making it available!

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