The Summer I Turned Pretty Trilogy
By Jenny Han
Warning! The blog contains spoilers
The Summer I Turned Pretty is a young adult trilogy written by Jenny Han who also wrote the To All the Boys trilogy. It is published by Simon & Schuster and includes The Summer I Turned Pretty (2009), It’s Not Summer Without You (2010) and We’ll Always Have Summer (2011).
The series follows our protagonist Isabel “Belly” Conklin and her summers at Cousins Beach with her brother Steven and her mother Laurel, along with her mothers best friend Susannah ‘Beck” and her boys Conrad and Jeremiah.
It’s a story of family, love, loss, and independence.
Love the book series, but they leave me wanting more. More expansion on the ending story. Maybe a book from all Conrad’s point of view especially about the events of book three. But in all, a great series.
Let me elaborate. I have a 6 yr old and a very demanding 20 month old. I don’t get many chances to read. Between night time routines, dinner, preparing for the next day, bottles, school lunches I’m usually knackered by the time to kids go to bed and go to bed myself. So I repeat.
I read this book in 3 nights!
I could not put this down. Mind you I had just finished streaming the series so I was still probably on a high from that. But either way I thoroughly loved this book.
It is primarily told from Belly’s (Isabelle Conklin) point of view and it switches between present day summer and past summers. When it is not from Belly’s point of view or from a past summer, it let you know at the start of that chapter so it makes it quite easy to follow.
This book is an easy read and a rather cute story. Yes it’s cliché but I found that both a comfort and a frustration. This book made me laugh and made me cry. And who doesn’t need a good cry every now and again.
The last few pages had me like WHAT! And I cant wait to read the other two books.
Hubby was working late and I had waited so long for my books to arrive from Booktopia that I was excited to sink my teeth into the next one I didn’t care how late he worked.
This story focuses on loss. Loss of Susannah (sorry but I did say this blog contained spoiler). Loss of summers in Cousins. Loss of how they will be no more now that Susannah is gone and loss of the period in Belly’s life that she most lived for.
But fate has other plans. Jeremiah calls Belly says Conrad has skipped school and if he misses mid terms he is out. They team up to find him. And find him they do. At the beach house in Cousins.
Conrad does as Conrad does and doesn’t let anyone in. Jeremiah and Belly think he is brooding over the loss of his mum. But like in book 1 he knows more that he lets on. Their dad is planning to sell the beach house and he cant let him.
But with the help of his family and his friends, can they change their dad’s minds and save the beach house that connects them together and to their mother.
This book picks up two years after the events of the last book. Its been two years since Conrad pushed Belly to Jeremiah and we learn that they have been in a relationship since. They even go to the same college.
The relationship is good, solid but at a party and the end of term before summer Belly learns that Jeremiah did the most unimaginable.
To prove he is remorseful, Jeremiah proposes. Hesitantly at first Belly accepts. Can she forgive, can they have a life together? Will the family approve? Has she really ever gotten over Conrad? With all these hurdles, Belly throws herself in wedding planning. After a fight with her mum she moves to the beach house to finish preparation. But who is already staying there? Conrad! Who is now dragged into wedding prep for his girl to another man. His brother.
I loved this book but I hated this book. I’ve spent three books invested in these characters, this love story (Team Conrad here) and my happy ending (again, spoilers) is summed up in an epilogue. I get that she marries Conrad but her life with him after the letters start, and their getting back together, their engagement, their wedding and their life going forward is not explored. Jeremiah is seen at their wedding from a distance. The brothers share a nod, but do they/can they get their relationship back.
Jenny Han I need more!