Review: Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson
Monday, 17 August 2015 @ 08:00// 0 comment(s)



Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release date: May 8th, 2012
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Romance
Pages:  468
Source: Bought it
Goodreads Purchase
From the Flying Start author of Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour, a powerful novel about hope in the face of heartbreak. 

Taylor Edwards’ family might not be the closest-knit—everyone is a little too busy and overscheduled—but for the most part, they get along just fine. Then Taylor’s dad gets devastating news, and her parents decide that the family will spend one last summer all together at their old lake house in the Pocono Mountains.

Crammed into a place much smaller and more rustic than they are used to, they begin to get to know each other again. And Taylor discovers that the people she thought she had left behind haven’t actually gone anywhere. Her former best friend is still around, as is her first boyfriend…and he’s much cuter at seventeen than he was at twelve.

As the summer progresses and the Edwards become more of a family, they’re more aware than ever that they’re battling a ticking clock. Sometimes, though, there is just enough time to get a second chance—with family, with friends, and with love.
 
After reading Morgan Matson's other work, Amy & Roger's Epic Detour, which was good but a little just so-so. I decided to give her other book a go and I came up with Second Chance Summer. Why? Well, mainly because the cover is perfect and hell, my favorite color is orange, and also because I'm a sucker for childhood romances (yeah. there is. just check the summary).

Taylor Edwards and her family are having a tough time and decide that they should spend one last summer together in their old lake house in the Pocono Mountains—which she hasn't been in for five years. But, then it turns out that her former best friend and ex-boyfriend are still around when in fact they're all nothing more than strangers now.

Morgan Matson was successful in writing a touching story complete with top-notch writing. The story drags too much in the beginning and I found myself asking questions about Taylor's past that apparently matters the most to the story. But, as I read more and more, I found myself captivated and hooked by the pages. It was beautiful and completely relatable. I remembered the butterflies I got when I was twelve when I read about Taylor and Henry's relationship five summers earlier. I could also relate to Taylor's relationship with her dad, which, in fact, is pretty much like my own. 

I also found myself enjoying the characters' depths and variations. We have Taylor, who tends to run away when things are tough and hard for her to manage. We also have Warren, Taylor's older brother, who's a genius, loves to read random facts, and pretty much a sucker around the girl he has a crush on. And then there's Henry, Taylor's love interest, who turns out to be such a sweetheart and totally the kind of guy you would want to be around with. Honestly, I could go on and on making a list about all the other characters because I already knew what they're really like. But, then, you might not want to read too many spoilers and I probably don't really want to do it. The point is, I felt like I knew the characters inside and out already just by reading half of the book.

The main character is also relatable even though I found her narration a bit flat and on the edge sometimes. The fact that Taylor has a mental breakdown every time she has to do a public speaking pretty much expresses what everyone feels when they have to go on a stage. She also has a tendency to run away when things get rough and I mean, who doesn't relate to that? We all want to run away when things get tough, right? The difference is some of us really do run and some of us don't.

When it is actually a story about romance, I had a feeling that I actually enjoyed the family connection more than the romance. What I liked the most was the relationship between Taylor and her dad because it reminded me of me and my dad's. Taylor and Warren's fraternal relationship is also totally adorable. Warren reminds me of my older brother, which is totally imaginary, and I found myself wanting to make him as my own. Taylor and her mother's relationship is actually not perfect, but we all could relate to the yelling and then apologizing part they have in the book.

Second Chance Summer is a touching story about second chances with family, friends, and romance. It is totally relatable and captivating even though the first half of the book (which takes up more than two hundred pages) is pretty much uninteresting and boring(which is totally the reason I gave three and a half stars). But then the second half turns out to be so heartwarming yet so sad I had to tear up a little bit.

My rating:  ★ ★ ★ . 5 

Reviewed by Inas

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