Friday, June 21, 2013

Summer Solstice: Summer Books

It's the first day of summer! Here are some great books about summer vacations!


Criss Cross by Lynne Rae Perkins. Debbie wishes something would happen. Something exciting, and soon. Debbie's 14 and realizing she's no longer a child. Over the course of the summer, little happens-- it's one of those summers of small moments and daily routine, but it's a beautiful character piece.

Monsoon Summer by Mitali Perkins. Jazz is not happy when her mother wins a grant for them to spend the summer in India. Her mother wants to start a clinic at the orphanage she was adopted from, but Jazz doesn't want to leave behind her business and crush to spend the summer in another country.

Now and Zen by Linda Gerber. I'm a huge fan of the Students Across the Seven Seas series, about high school students studying abroad. In this one, Japanese-American Nori is spending a summer at a Global Outreach program in Tokyo. The program draws students in from around the world, many of whom have a hard time understanding that Nori is Japanese-American, not Japanese. Also, expecting the traditional images of Japan, Nori is NOT prepared for the neon modernity that is Tokyo!


The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han. Belly lives for the summers, which she spends at the beach with her family and another family. This summer though, the boys have grown, and Belly has, too. This summer, everything's different, even though Belly wishes it would stay the same. The first in a trilogy, follow it with It's Not Summer Without You.

Withering Tights by Louise Rennison. Tallulah is off to performing arts summer camp. Only, when she gets there, she discovers that small town Yorkshire is not what she expected. But Tallulah's big worry is that she wants to be accepted into the year-round program, but, unlike her friends, she's not that talented and isn't sure what to do... The first in the Misadventures of Tallulah Casey series, follow it with A Midsummer Tights Dream.

Invincible Summer by Hannah Moscowitz. Noah comes from a large family, but one that also has serious issues. Told over the course of four summers, we see Noah's family's issues, especially his relationship with his brother Chase, and the beach-neighbor girl they're both sleeping with.


Millicent Min, Girl Genius by Lisa Yee. Millicent is 11 and in high school. But this summer, she's taking some college classes-- she's excited, hoping maybe college kids will be mature enough to see her for her and maybe be friends. But she also has to take volleyball (ugh) and tutor horrible Stanford Wong. When she meets a new girl in volleyball, Millicent lets Emily think she's totally normal and maybe they can just be normal friends. Be sure to also read So Totally Emily Ebers and Stanford Wong Flunks Big-time to see the same summer from different points of view.

Surface Tension by Brent Runyon. Every summer Luke spends two weeks at the lake house. Covering only those two weeks every year, we see Luke at distinct points as he grows up.

Past Perfect by Leila Sales. Life as a historical interpreter at Colonial Essex is more complicated than wearing all those petticoats in the summer heat when you start a clandestine relationship with a soldier from Reenactment Land across the street. Chelsea's supposed to be leading the war against Reenactment Land, not making out with the enemy.

There are a million books about summer, so I probably left off your favorite-- what is it?

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