Perhaps I should qualify this review by stating that I am probably not the most likely reader of The Forever Summer by Jamie Brenner. I was even warned that it may not be for people like me.
That being said, I motored through the book and was pleased to discover that it is a fairly brisk read. In fact, it was a particularly cold day, and the idea of summer (and fun) had me racing through the pages. “Brisk” is an appropriate word even though it is the very opposite of brisk, (it’s sunny, in fact).
The focus of the book is on Marin Bishop. When the book opens, Marin is in the midst of a torrid sexual relationship with someone we quickly discover is 1. Not her fiancé 2. That she has a fiancé and 3. That she is involved with somebody from her job.
This is probably not the smartest of ideas. But then we discover that when her parents come to visit her in California, that they have some secrets of their own, especially her mother. Through her work, Marin discovers a much bigger secret that leads her to find…actually the plot is a major part of the book’s juiciness, but let’s just say that there is a major road trip planned for Cape Cod, which is the spot that The Forever Summer is set to take place. It’s a fun trip and we’re happy to read about it.
Brenner does three things in her writing style, one which is an asset to this book and two that I find absolutely infuriating. This trick isn’t limited to a “beach read” as I would be critical of any sort of book that would do these things. The first is to jump back and forth between past and present to the point that I’m not sure what is taking place when. The second is to introduce a jumble of characters, but extended to the point that the action that happens to the characters is made obvious only after it is offered to the reader.
So what does Brenner do well? Offer up steamy scenes and make the book feel appropriate to a beach read. There is some sex, some mentions of sisterhood and family, and it is wrapped up with a bow.
The Forever Summer was provided by Hachette Canada in exchange for an honest review. It may be purchased from your friendly independent bookseller or other fine bookstores.