Book: A Summer to Remember
Author: Victoria Connelly
Publisher: Avon Books
Available: 5th June 2014 (In paperback, £6.99)
If you enjoy this book you might like: A Little Love Song by Michelle Magorian
Summary: Nina is not sure how it happened, but somewhere along the way, she lost track of where it was all going. So one fateful day, she makes a brave decision: she’s going to leave it all behind. She accepts a job deep in the English countryside with the Milton family, working as a researcher for aspiring author Dudley. With endless summer days ahead of her, she couldn’t be happier. But her quiet life is soon interrupted when the handsome Milton boys return home…
Hope you’re all having good weeks! I’ve started getting very excited for the summer, so it seems apt that this week I’ve been reading Victoria Connelly’s A Summer To Remember. It’s turned out to be what I think is a perfect holiday read. It’s got everything I want for a fun summer read – sunny weather, romance, gorgeous countryside, and great characters. The plot is fairly straightforward, but Victoria throws in a few twists you don’t really see coming – I won’t spoil anything, but I was really pleasantly surprised!
The main character, Nina, is brilliant. Despite having a few romantic interests throughout the book, I really loved that this wasn’t how she was defined as a protagonist. Sometimes I find that this type of novel can turn a female lead into a bit of a love-obsessed romantic, but not Nina. For a start, there’s a bit about her heartbreak over a failed relationship, but Victoria writes in a way where it’s left in the past: it gives just enough character depth so we understand Nina’s reactions throughout the novel, but at the same time allows you to move forward with her in the story.
As the Milton brothers Dominic and Alex try to seduce Nina, I loved how Victoria kept the plot uncomplicated – this isn’t the kind of story full of misunderstandings and dramatic declarations of love, it’s a story about a woman finding herself and making the decisions which are best for her. We get an insight into what is going through Dominic’s mind as he falls for Nina but also struggles with his emotions for his ex, Faye, and I think this was a great addition as it meant that you could relate to him a bit more, rather than seeing him as the desperate and lonely love interest.
One of my favourite characters was Dudley, the aspiring author for whom Nina works. While he is quite temperamental, it’s difficult not to absolutely love him! There’s a particularly great passage where he discovers the Internet, and it made me think of the time we introduced my grandparents to the world wide web.. basically, it’s endearing and hilarious at the same time.
I’d definitely recommend getting your hands on this book if you’re off on a beach holiday, or even if you’re off on a mini break to the countryside. Such a great holiday read!
Have you got any books you’re excited about for the summer? Let me know!