Saturday, August 27, 2011

Review: The Summer of Skinny Dipping by Amanda Howells


Title: The Summer of Skinny Dipping
Author:
Amanda Howells
Genre: YA fiction

Where I got it:
E-book from the library

One sentence:
16-year-old Mia’s vacation to South Hampton changes dramatically when she meets a different, pale-skinned boy named Simon.

Themes:
Self-discovery, beach, romance,

Main character:
3.5/5
Mia is a solid narrator looking back on her time as a sixteen year old on vacation. However, I found that while her voice was relatable and intriguing, the character was unfortunately forgettable. I did, however, like some of the unusual parts: how Mia was larger and self-conscious of her body, how she was interested in science, etc.

Secondary characters:
4/5
I actually found the secondary characters to be more interesting and complex than Mia. Corinne, her cousin, changed drastically since Mia last saw her. Although she seems snobby and unconcerned with her uncool cousin, Corinne was struggling with a broken family and drug addiction. Simon is also captivating because he is different and because of his own family problems.

Writing style: 4.5/5
Howell’s writing style was very clear and easy to follow, and had some very poignant passages. My only problem was that the first part of the book really seemed to drag, and it was pretty deep into the book that we finally meet Simon. I feel like it was at that scene that the book really hit its stride.

Plot:
3/5
The plot was definitely slow moving sometimes, and it certainly wasn’t anything new. However, I didn’t give up on the book and the ending was a complete shock that I never saw coming.  

Best scene:
When Mia decides to finally skinny dip

Positives:
Cast of supporting characters, writing style, Simon’s uniqueness,

Negatives: Mia’s character, slow moving plot, lack of originality


First Line: There are summers you'll always remember and summers you've forgotten even before they're through.

Cover: I thought Mia was supposed to be larger? The girl on the front looks pretty skinny.

Ending:
Probably the most redeeming quality for me

Verdict:
Warning- this may look like a sweet, cute summer read, but it definitely brings up some darker themes. Still, it brought forward some emotions and made me think and was ultimately a satisfying ending.

Rating:
7.2 / 10

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