It’s not exactly easy living in a shrine to your dead sister. Since birth, I’ve known that everyone loved Shannon. She was perfect–beautiful, smart, talented. And me? Not so much. My parents always expected me to live up to her greatness. But I could never measure up to her, so why even try?
This summer, I’ve started reading the journal Shannon kept just before she died . . . and suddenly nothing is what I thought it was. The more secrets I learn about Shannon and our family, the more everything changes. And as it turns out, facing the truth is no cakewalk, either.
The blurb of a book doesn’t usually catch my attention but this one did. And it was fairly small so I picked it up. For a book I had never heard of before, it was an interesting and mostly enjoyable read.
Summer’s parents had her as a coping mechanism after they lost their daughter, Shannon, in a car accident. Her sister was pretty much the perfect daughter: straight A student, never acted out, etc. Summer hates being in her shadow so she tries to act as different from Shannon as possible. Then one day, her aunt gives her Shannon’s journal and Summer “meets” her sister for the first time.
Now, when I read the blurb, I was expecting Summer to be one of those typical rebel teenagers who go out of her way to do the exact opposite of what her parents say. Gladly, that was not the case. Summer was, for the most part, pretty sensible and smart.
Although the story had a romantic aspect, it was more focused on family and Summer’s relationship with her parents. While getting to know who her sister was, Summer was also getting to know who her parents were before the accident.
The romantic interest, Gibs, was actually my favorite character. After some long and painful YA books with overbearing bad-boy boyfriends, sweet and intelligent Gibs was a nice change. And he was a good influence on Summer instead of the other way around which seems to be the norm these days.
Cons: The writing, though not bad, could have been better. And some of the characters felt a little one-dimensional to me, but that’s understandable since it was a small book and the author was mainly focusing on Summer.
Overall, it was a nice read.