27 June 2013

Summer Reads - Old Favourites

There are some books that I always go back to during the summer. I've read the same books every summer for a few years now and it's got to the stage where summer doesn't feel like summer unless I read these books. Of course I'm planning to do the same this year, and as they're my favourite summer books ever I felt like I needed to share them with you all. ^_^

Just like in my last Summer Reads post (here), the book covers and synopsis's are from Amazon and Goodreads, and the collage was made on PicMonkey. 

Top left to bottom right: The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han, It's Not Summer Without You by Jenny Han, We'll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han, Starter For Ten by David Nicholls, Before I Die by Jenny Downham and Paper Towns by John Green. As you may have noticed, the top three books are a trilogy. :P 

Every year Isabel spends a perfect summer at her family friends' house. There's the swimming pool at night, the private stretch of sandy beach . . . and the two boys. Unavailable, aloof Conrad - who she's been in love with forever - and friendly, relaxed Jeremiah, the only one who's ever really paid her any attention. But this year something is different. They seem to have noticed her for the first time. It's going to be an amazing summer - and one she'll never forget . . .
This is without a doubt my all-time favourite summer read. I love the characters of Belly, Conrad and (especially) Jerimiah, and Jenny Han's writing style is beautiful. The plot is typical for a fluffy summer read but it still has some substance and plenty of heartbreak. I laugh a lot and cry even more when I'm reading this book. :') Belly is super easy to relate to and you start to feel like her friend as you read the book, and the Fisher boys are amazing...^_^

I'm not going to put the official synopsis here as it gives away a few things from the first book, but basically this second installment follows Belly through another summer where she has grown up a bit more. This means that Jerimiah and Conrad have also grown up and changed, leaving her even more torn than before. She has to choose between the brothers whilst trying to stop the summer tradition from changing.
This second book is just as amazing as the first! I cried a lot more in this book as it's so damn emotional, but it's still quite light-hearted and summery. The characters of Jerimiah, Conrad and Belly stay true to themselves and you find out a lot more about them and their backgrounds. If I remember correctly, I was 100% team Jerimiah in the first 2 books, but that's pretty controversial. :P  

Like the second book, I'm not going to put a synopsis here as it spoils the rest of the trilogy and gives away major details. Basically Belly has no choice but to make her final decision between Jerimiah and Conrad, and now that they are all a good bit older they have all changed. She is completely torn as these are the two boys she has ever loved but she has to make her decision.
A lot of tears were shed during this book...My opinions were flipped and changed completely which made me cry, and my prediction was completely wrong which also made me cry...So emotional. :'( The characters, writing style and plot were all still amazing and I enjoyed this book a ridiculous amount. 
I'd HIGHLY recommend the Summer trilogy by Jenny Han!! 

The year is 1985. Brian Jackson, a working-class kid on full scholarship, has started his first term at university. He has a dark secret—a long-held, burning ambition to appear on the wildly popular British TV quiz show University Challenge—and now, finally, it seems the dream is about to become reality. He's made the school team, and they've completed the qualifying rounds and are limbering up for their first televised match. (And, what's more, he's fallen head over heels for one of his teammates, the beautiful, brainy, and intimidatingly posh Alice Harbinson.) Life seems perfect and triumph inevitable—but as his world opens up, Brian learns that a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing.  
This might come as a surprise as this isn't a John Green book, but Starter For Ten is actually my favourite book. It's witty, intelligent, hilarious and heart-warming all at once, and David Nicholls is an amazing author with a really natural, effortless style of writing. The plot is right up my street as it's geeky and a bit lame (it is based around University Challenge afterall) and the characters are all really well developed and are well...deep, haha. I read this book all year round but I love it a little more in summer because it's light and a lot of fun to read. ^_^

Tessa has just a few months to live. Fighting back against hospital visits, endless tests and drugs with excruciating side-effects, Tessa compiles a list. It's her Before I Die list. Released from the constraints of 'normal' life, Tessa tastes new experiences to make her feel alive while her failing body struggles to keep up. Her feelings, her relationships with her father and brother, her estranged mother, her best friend, and the powerful, bittersweet first love she finds with the boy next door - all are painfully yet beautifully crystallized in the precious weeks before Tessa's time finally runs out.
This such a beautiful, heart-breaking book. :') I read it first in Malta in 2011 so it has some negative memories for me but I love it too much to not read it every year. I remember finishing it on the plane home and just crying for the rest of the journey. The writing isn't amazing and the characters aren't all that likable, but there's just something about this book that makes it wonderful. It was made into a film last year called Now Is Good but I was ill when it was in cinemas so I didn't get to see it. I'm not too fussed to be honest because I don't agree with the casting or the decision to change the title. :/ I love the book though. :)

Who is the real Margo? Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs into his life - dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge - he follows. After their all-nighter ends and a new day breaks, Q arrives at school to discover that Margo, always an enigma, has now become a mystery. She has disappeared. Q soon learns that there are clues in her disappearance ...and they are for him. Trailing Margo's disconnected path across the USA, the closer Q gets, the less sure he is of who he is looking for.
This won't come as a surprise as you'll all be aware of my John Green obsession. :P Paper Towns is my favourite book of his because of the amazing characters and whole road-trip aspect of it. It's the perfect summer read as it's emotional and tragic whilst still being hilarious and incredibly enjoyable. I've read it four times already but I'm more than willing to read it again. ^__^

Have you read any of these books? Do you have any recommendations? :D
Lots of love, Cat


  1. I'd so love to read Starter for Ten! And see the film cause, y'know, James MacAvoy...~giggle giggle~

    1. It's my favourite book, favourite film, favourite soundtrack, favourite...everything!! You should definitely read and watch it :D xx

  2. I read the review for the ''Summer i turned pretty'' and it is fabulous!

  3. Thanks so much for hosting the giveaway! These books sound great, I hope I win!:D

  4. Oh- opps, wrong section:P

  5. I've read Jenny Han's books, as well as Paper Towns. I'm actually reading Paper Towns for the third time right now. It's one of my favorite books.

    I'm a new Bloglovin follower. Here's my blog: http://readingismytreasure.blogspot.com/

    Who knows? You may see a posting with a whole bunch of Paper Towns quotes sometime in July. I've been catching a lot of quotes while reading!

    1. Seems like we have similar tastes in books. ^__^ I followed your blog through BlogLovin'. xx

  6. I have read before I die, it is such a sad book but it makes you appreciate life. A film was released based on the book called Now is Good, I would definitely recommend reading the book before seeing the film though :)
    Dayna xx


    1. I know about Now Is Good, I mentioned it in the post! x


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