Twenty Boy Summer

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19 reviews with 5 stars
26 reviews
 
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4.6
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4.7(26)
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4.5(4)
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An Emotional Read that Settles, Deep in Your Bones
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Twenty Boy Summer is one of the most emotional and moving contemporaries I’ve read in a long time. It’s the type of story that invades your being and settles deep in your bones, becoming a part of who you are and touching you in ways you forgot books had the power to do. It’s the type of book that leaves you thinking, deep into the night, and that gives you hope as you turn the final page.

Anna is a beautiful protagonist. Determined to keep her secret from her best friend, she’s never able to let Frankie know the extent of her grief over Matt’s death.

"Every morning, I wake up and forget just for a second that it happened. But once my eyes open, it buries me like a landslide of sharp, sad rocks. Once my eyes open, I’m heavy, like there’s to much gravity on my heart."

She’s selfless, pushing back her emotions in order to be the best possible friend to Frankie, putting Frankie’s feelings and grief before her own, and she’s heartbreaking, succumbing to the pain of losing Matt when she thinks no one’s looking. She’s the best friend Frankie could ever ask for, despite the lies she feels she’s forced to tell her everyday. I loved watching her work through her grief, using a summer fling with a surfer boy to help her realize that no one could ever erase Matt, that she could learn to love again, and that her loss might not always be so heavy a burden to carry.

I think Ockler’s treatment of a family in mourning was one of my favorite aspects of Twenty Boy Summer. Frankie’s family was volatile, with the smallest of things setting one of them off. Every happy moment felt like it was stolen, like their grief was timing itself for the perfect reminder that it was a constant. It made for a page-turning read, as I waited for a seemingly happy moment to be destroyed by a glass of spilt coke. It also brought out the most raw and honest truths, with one or more family members laying their heart on the line, daring someone to break it all over again. And Ockler is a master at repeatedly breaking hearts.

"Weeping is not the same thing as crying. It takes your whole body to weep, and when it’s over, you feel like you don’t have any bones left to hold you up."

I just loved everything about Twenty Boy Summer. Anna and Frankie’s friendship made me nostaltic for the type of summer where I could spend every day scheming the next big adventure, or the latest plan to capture a boy’s heart, with my friends. I loved that Anna saw her relationship with Sam for what it was, and that I was ok with them having mere weeks together. I loved that Anna and Frankie both got closure, of a sort. And I love that I closed the book with a smile on my face and tears running down my cheeks.
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Amazing!
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Before this book, it had been a long time since a piece of literature made me cry. And not just one tear, I mean a river of tears. Twenty Boy Summer is beautiful. I loved it from page one to the very end!
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Heartbreaking
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by The Library Lurker

Wow. This book was...wow. I don't even know what to say, other than that
I loved it. It's about so many things: Love, death, friendship,
family.... It's just amazing. I was sucked into the story and couldn't
get out until I finished it.



Anna is a really good narrator. She's like your best friend, only
sadder. Frankie was kind of annoying; all that she really cared about
were clothes and boys. But that's after her brother Matt's death, and
when someone dies it changes people. Anna has never really been able to
get over Matt's death. She kept their relationship a secret even after
he died, as it was her last promise to him. She feels terrible about
keeping it from Frankie, but she thinks that she has to.



Ockler does an amazing job with characterization. I was slightly annoyed
with Frankie, but I think that she wanted it to be that way. My heart
was also broken many times throughout, but it was always put back
together again. I don't know how she made me care so much about a
character that I knew for maybe 25 pages, or how she managed to make me
feel whatever Anna was feeling, but she did.



Basically, this book is great, you should read it.
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Wonderful book!!!
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Julie

I love this book. Before I read it, I only stuck to fantasy and science fiction books. I wouldn't have even thought about reading a book like this, I though it would bore me, but I was way off! I won this book in a giveaway and I read it the next day. At first, I though 'this book is ok, not bad.' As I kept reading and reading, it got better and better. I could say this is one of my favorite books! It has just the right amount of sorrow and cheer. This book kept me wanting to read it every minute of the day, to know what would happen next. I finished it in a couple days, and I was amazed! I could relate to the characters and I became emotionally intertwined in this book. When the characters were happy, I was happy. When they were said, I was sad. I like when I can relate and feel what the characters are going through. It makes the book so much better. This book started out with a cute love relationship and faded into a sad love story. Anna had to deal with the loss of her boyfriend, and she kept the secret from her friend. I would totally recommend this book to anyone! It was an awesome read, it deserves a 5 star rating!
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Memorable and Heart-Warming
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by BooksObsession

Anna and Frankie, inseparable best
friends, are looking for a summer romance while they vacation in
California.. but they're still grieving for Matt, who was Frankie's
older brother and Anna's secret boyfriend. As Anna tries to comfort
Frankie's grief, and her own, the secret of her love for Matt threatens
to destroy their friendship.

I have heard a LOT of great talk
about this book, and now I can see why. I dove right into the story,
connecting to shy and secretive Anna - the main character. I couldn't
believe this was Sarah Ockler's debut book because the writing was just
spectacular! I would've thought she had been writing books for years
and years. I could literally feel Anna's heartache and longing for Matt
throughout the book - and I'll admit that I cried a few more times than
I had expected.

Halfway through the novel, it started to wind
down a little bit for me and I wasn't sure where the story was headed.
Chapters passed, and nothing big was happening. I kept anticipating for
Anna to finally come clean and share her big secret with Frankie
already. But OH MY GOODNESS...when you hit the climax in this book it
will just shatter your heart into little bits and pieces! (Well, for me
it did anyway.) I felt so many different emotions as I ripped through
the pages, wondering what conflict would arise next. I felt frustrated
for Anna, sad, angry, lonely, happy, overwhelmed - basically I just
literally felt like I was IN the story. I love that feeling. :)


One
thing that I didn't like at all at first was the fact that Frankie and
Anna acted like virginity was nothing. That's the whole reason the book
is called, "Twenty Boy Summer." Because they plan to meet a different
boy each day that they are in California, in hopes of finding the one that Anna can give her purity to. I'm a big believer in abstinence so I didn't really like the idea.

This
is an amazing heart-touching book that you must read! I was very
content with the ending, and happy with how it all turned out in the
end. I feel like all the bits and pieces of it came together, all the
loose ends tied together, and the stray pieces completing the puzzle. 


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Twenty Boy Summer
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Erica

Twenty Boy Summer
Sarah Ockler

Rating: 5 stars

"Don't worry, Anna. I'll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the best way to do it."
"Okay."
"Promise me? Promise you won't say anything?"
"Don't worry." I laughed. "It's our secret, right?"

According to her best friend Frankie, twenty days in ZanzibarBay is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy ever 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 that kind of romance, and it was with Frankie's older brother, Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.

Beautifully written and emotionally honest, this is a debut novel that explores what it truly means to love someone and what it means to grieve, and ultimately, how to make the most of every single moment this world has to offer.


This was Sarah Ockler's first novel, but all I can say is holy debut! Twenty Boy Summer was incredible! Sarah Ockler writes a touching story about tragic loss, friendship, love, and summer romance. Ockler really touched all aspects of life that are meaningful to people. Matt lingers in every conversation even when not being discussed.

Anna, the main character, was so real. Her wave of emotions were all so deep that one must wonder how Sarah Ockler wrote such a wonderful character. Throughout the entire book, I found myself feeling for Anna, especially when dealing with the grief Anna felt. As the novel went on, you could see Anna changing, starting to move on. As changes progressed, I found myself more and more drawn to Anna. Her best friend, Frankie, changed in different ways - more as a cover for that emormous pool of grief she's feeling. The two girls were so different and unique, making reading about each that much more alluring.

I absolutely loved the cover! When I first picked up the book, I had no clue what it meant, and within a few chapters I could completely connect with what the cover symbolized. That made me love the cover that much more.

I cannot wait to see what ideas Sarah Ockler comes up with next!
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I felt the book more than read it!
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Sab H. (Crystal Reviews)

What a great read. After so many supernatural books in a row this was
like a summer break. It's a wonderful story. A story about friendship
and love, specially about grief and letting go. Ockler has a magic gift
when she writes. It's amazing how words seem to have sounds and
backgrounds and you're wondering around in her young world seeing
things through Anna's eyes. I feel like I felt the book more than read it. I could see every single scenario. Amazing.

It
also has this refreshing sense of humor, ironies and splendid sarcasm,
so characteristic of teen years. I laughed out loud several times
during reading and felt that sting before crying several times as well.
A beautiful debut.

Anna's character feels so real, it was hard
for me to remember it was not me. All the characters are wonderful,
specially Frankie's. Plus, the cover! I loved the cover before reading
the book, and after reading it, I think there is no other way to make
this book more perfect than with that gorgeous cover. If you like
fun/sad, growing up-romance books you shouldn't hesitate to read this
right now.

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Beautifully told story
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Sara

Title: Twenty Boy Summer
Author: Sarah Ockler
Publisher: Little, Brown
Date Published: 2009
Genre: Young Adult
Main Themes: Love, Friendship, Family, Grief, Secrets
Pages: 290
Plot (from book jacket):
" 'Don't worry Anna. I'll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the best way to do it.'
'Okay.'
'Promise me? Promise me you won't say anything?'
'Don't worry.' I laughed. 'It's our little 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."

Ahhhh! I devoured this book; it was simply stunning. Seriously! I hadn't heard a bad review about it, but I was hesitant. Was it too good to be true? Nope, apparently not!

The characters were so amazing in this novel - I came to love Frankie, Anna, Matt, and Sam! Anna was an awesome narrator with the perfect balance of truthfulness, wit, and sarcasm. Sam was definitely swoon worthy; I loved that he wasn't just a good looking guy Anna meets on vacation, he was smart and had depth as well.

Frankie and Anna's relationship was one of my favorite parts of the story. I think that it perfectly captured what many best friend relationships are like: there is jealousy, love, protectiveness, and a billion other emotions and feelings all wrapped together - not just happiness and sunshine.

I've been reading a lot of books where an important person in the main characters life has died (Broken Soup, Evermore, Willow,I Heart You, You Haunt Me, etc) and I really thought that those authors did well, but I really liked Sarah Ockler's depiction in particular. Twenty Boy Summer is most closely related to I Heart You, You Haunt Me (in that the boyfriend/love interest is the character that is lost), but I really liked how the author portrayed Anna's feelings and confusion. If you liked I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroeder, I would definitely recommend Twenty Boy Summer.

Ratings (Out of 10):
Plot: 10
Characters: 10
Writing style: 10
Romance: 10
Originality: 10
Total: 50/50 (A!!)

I think it is quite obvious that I think everyone should read this book! Add this review to the rest of the stack of glowing reviews!! :) Skip the library for this one - you're going to want it on your shelf!

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Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by ReggieWrites


Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah
Ockler is UH-MA-ZING! Almost all aspects of it are flawless. Again,
there is so much to say about this book so I'm going to break it down
for you:

The Cover.
Have you seen the cover? It's so vibrant and eye-catching. The red
glass stands out above all of the other sea glass. They were extremely
significant in Twenty Boy Summer.
I loved it. The book has a lot of references to sea glass. It's pure
genius and completely original. The only thing I didn't really like was
the title. I didn't think that Twenty Boy Summer was an appropriate title, but don't judge a book by it's title!

The writing.
Ockler's writing all throughout this book was beautiful and smooth. Not
once did I find a flaw in her writing. The words just flowed, seemingly
effortless. There's no other way to explain it. Ockler described
everything with detail but it was never boring. Her writing was like
discovering everything all over again...full of wonder and awe.

The characters.
Every single character in that book was well-developed and realistic.
Even though I couldn't relate to most of the characters (because I
haven't experienced that type of love yet), I loved them all. Anna and
Frankie were my favorites. Anna was so intent on not forgetting Matt,
and on keeping her secret from Frankie, that she wasn't able to let go
yet. The way Ockler was able to depict Anna's emotions was beyond
impressive. But the character that Ockler did the best job on, was
Frankie. Ockler was able to change Frankie's character and personality
so completely. At first, I thought that the sudden change in character
was random, but as the ending neared, I was able to gain more insight
into her character, her emotions, and how she dealt with them. I was
able to understand how it really felt like to loose a sibling.
Character-developement is definitely Ockler's strength in this book.

Layers.
On the surface, this is just another chick-lit book. But underneath the
layers of flirt, angst, and love, lies the underlying message of what
it means to truly let go and what it means to truly be friends. I saw
through these layers and double meanings. This book made my heart break
and it made me laugh and smile.

The Bottom Line: Twenty Boy Summer is
an incredible debut. Reading this has made me more appreciative and
thankful for everything in my life, just a little bit more. No words
can explain it. You just have to read it yourself. Twenty Boy Summer is a book of friendship, first love, family, and ultimately, letting go. Ockler did an impeccable job. A+ :-)

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Twenty Boy Summer
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
0.0
Writing Style
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Erica

Twenty Boy Summer
Sarah Ockler

Rating: 5 stars

"Don't worry, Anna. I'll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the best way to do it."
"Okay."
"Promise me? Promise you won't say anything?"
"Don't worry." I laughed. "It's our secret, right?"

According to her best friend Frankie, twenty days in ZanzibarBay is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy ever 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 that kind of romance, and it was with Frankie's older brother, Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.

Beautifully written and emotionally honest, this is a debut novel that explores what it truly means to love someone and what it means to grieve, and ultimately, how to make the most of every single moment this world has to offer.


This was Sarah Ockler's first novel, but all I can say is holy debut! Twenty Boy Summer was incredible! Sarah Ockler writes a touching story about tragic loss, friendship, love, and summer romance. Ockler really touched all aspects of life that are meaningful to people. Matt lingers in every conversation even when not being discussed.

Anna, the main character, was so real. Her wave of emotions were all so deep that one must wonder how Sarah Ockler wrote such a wonderful character. Throughout the entire book, I found myself feeling for Anna, especially when dealing with the grief Anna felt. As the novel went on, you could see Anna changing, starting to move on. As changes progressed, I found myself more and more drawn to Anna. Her best friend, Frankie, changed in different ways - more as a cover for that emormous pool of grief she's feeling. The two girls were so different and unique, making reading about each that much more alluring.

I absolutely loved the cover! When I first picked up the book, I had no clue what it meant, and within a few chapters I could completely connect with what the cover symbolized. That made me love the cover that much more.

I cannot wait to see what ideas Sarah Ockler comes up with next!
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