Book received from Around the World Tours
Paperback: 324 pages
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. (Source)
THE SUMMER OF SKINNY DIPPING, by Amanda Howells is a sweet story of teenage angst and first loves. Being a teenager is hard enough emotionally but when broken hearts and unmet expectations occur, the results can be life-changing.
The summer that Mia recounts in this book was the best summer of her life. After being dumped by someone she thought was her true love, she wanted to get away to a time and place where everything was simple. But Mia discovered that the appearance of perfection that her cousins and aunt represented was farthest from the truth.
In the wake of any breakup, a person undergoes an analysis of themselves to try and understand what went wrong. Mia with her southern roots and not-so-thin body was scrutinized by her cousins and even herself. But the interest of Simon Ross transformed Mia's perspective completely.
Howells characters were fantastic. Each one of them was affected by this incredible summer of transformations and realizations. Mia and Simon were a striking couple. They both created a friendship that turned into a romance by opening up completely with each other, including skinny dipping. As a reader, I invested a lot in these characters and their happiness but sometimes bad choices get in the way. Life is about balance and if you create good from bad you are never wrong.
Overall this book was exceptional. This story of love, appearances, and being true to yourself wholly transformed my thinking of life.