We’ll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han
Jumping even further into the future with this one, Han brings us to Belly’s freshman year of college.
Reading this gave me an almost claustrophobic feeling, because I pretty much knew what was going to happen and then spent the whole book both waiting for it and dreading it. Basically there’s just no pretty way to resolve a love triangle. Especially when family is involved. I mean sure, a writer can find a way through it and tie a neat little bow on it and teenagers can sigh over how dramatic and important true love is, but real love is much uglier. I’m a grown up, so I know these things. You can explain in a book that people will be hurt, but that’s nothing compared to the true devastation that would be caused by a real-life version of these events. That said, I’m pretty sure that for most teens the sighing and “meant to be togethering” will win out over my cranky old lady pragmatism.
Also, a big thumbs down to my least favorite writing technique ever, the several years later epilogue. Oh, suck it up and write us through the nasty bits. If you can’t do it, you might want to ask yourself why.
Sex, Nudity, Dating – Dearest Belly is still a virgin, but others are most certainly sexually active. There is a discussion about losing your virginity, if it will hurt, etc. There’s kissing and some feeling up.
Profanity– “hell,” “Oh my God,” “jerk,” “ass,” “shit,” “damn,” I wouldn’t be too surprised if I missed some though because this list seems short compared to the first two books. On the other hand, if you were comfortable with the first two books, you probably won’t be too upset by the profanity in this one.
Death, Violence and Gore – Someone gets slapped. Someone gets a deep cut while surfing.
Drugs, Alcohol and Smoking – Hello. We are no longer dabbling folks. People smoke weed. There is abundant underage drinking including but not limited to, beer pong, body shots, double shots and wine. Belly speculates that a creepy landlord probably has a meth lab in his basement.
Frightening or Intense Things – None.