After getting dumped by her boyfriend, sixteen-year-old Mia Gordon is looking forward to spending a relaxing summer in the Hamptons with her glamorous cousins. But when she arrives, her cousins are distant, moody, and caught up with a fast crowd. Mia finds herself lonelier than ever.
That's when she meets her next-door-neighbor, Simon Ross. Simon isn't like the snobby party boys her cousins seem obsessed with; he's funny, artistic, and utterly adventurous. And from the very first time he encourages Mia to go skinny-dipping, she's caught up in a current impossible to resist.
This novel is one of those summer reads that you turn to when you're looking for more than the typical summer romance. Though this is Howells' first novel (correct me if I'm wrong), her writing is spectacular. I found it to be a really original storyline, which was a really pleasant surprise since the summary was a little vague. The relationship between Mia and Simon took the forefront of course, but Howells did a really great job of intertwining the side stories in a way that at some point or another they all had their chance in the spotlight, or there would have been a hole in Mia and Simon's relationship. I would even go so far as to say that all the other things going on in Mia's and Simon's individual lives is what brought them together.
I found the main character, Mia, to be really interesting. In the beginning of the novel, I wasn't sure if I would like her because she seemed to be pretty dramatic about her short relationship with her ex boyfriend, and she just seemed like she was too busy trying to appease to her cousins. I grew to like Mia, however, because as the novel continued, Mia began to like herself. She stopped trying so much and she started acting more like herself, which turned out to be a great person. I appreciate Howells making this transformation because it really helped me see how Mia truly grew in that short summer.
Really original, but I will say that the ending wasn't my favorite
Mia and Simon were really great, however I wasn't that happy with Mia's cousins or their friends. I could tell there was a lot more going on with them, but there just wasn't enough time to delve into it
Cover Art: A
Perfectly summer. It helped set the beach scene in my mind :)
Just like summer, this novel passed quickly, but not too much so. While the ending was a little rushed, it matched the tone of what was going on.
With all of this in mind, I give this intriguing summertime novel:
Be sure to pick up your copy of The Summer of Skinny Dipping; out June 1st!