Cover Image: The Summer of Everything

The Summer of Everything

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Member Reviews

This was a really sweet YA summer story with lots of LGBTQIA+ representation that I think will mean a lot to teens looking for themselves in stories. It centred around a book store which is always a winner for me, and I liked the sassiness of this fun group of friends, the banter was A+. There were a few things that as an adult reader I found a bit baffling, just bits of miscommunication etc. but obviously without conflict there is no story, so I understand its presence, I just find as I get older it frustrates me more. All in all, a sweet story with diverse rep. but nothing to write home about.
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A sweet fun summer story with teens is a wonderful story. I loved the diverse set of characters and loved all the pop culture references. Such a fun read!
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After graduating high school and spending some time abroad with his parents, Wes is back in his beloved home of Santa Monica. He is ecstatic to be back with his best friends, the environment, and probably most of all his second home and workplace, the Once Upon a Page bookstore. Wes soon realizes that all of the familiar, amazing things like his store and the best friend he's been crushing on for ages might all be skipping away from him.

Wes is a great character. He's optimistic and fights for what he wants, not wanting to give up even when everyone tells him he's fighting losing battles. For the most part, this serves him well but he also learns an important lesson: when to give up and let things progress as they need to. I loved that aspect of this book, but it also spent too much time trying to prove things. Wes' friend and part-time roommate, Ella, for example spends to entire book trying to prove that she's not "that girl." She goes through an entire list of stereotypes that she isn't, but in doing so becomes a stereotype. Wes makes some really poor decisions in terms of relationships which is understandable especially for a teenager, but they're not resolved well. Overall, I was a little disappointed in how the book handled several big issues in his life and the characterizations of some of Wes' friends. They were either stereotypes or seemed thrown in to cover some sort of representation - like ace and gender non-conforming. While I actually loved those two characters, their representation seemed a little lazy.
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Quite surprised by the lower average rating for this book because I LOVED it. However, that's possibly because it's about a bunch of cute, queer teens who all work at a book store and listen to 90s indie music all day. It's basically my dream rewrite of the cult film Empire Records - which yes, they totally name check in this book.

CAN SOMEONE PLEASE MAKE THIS INTO A NETFLIX FILM ASAP??

I loved the burgeoning romances, the comfortable way the young characters talked about being non-binary or asexual, the soundtrack, the store being a safe queer space. It really made me feel like the kids really are gonna be alright.

The only reason this book wasn't five stars for me was that it often felt like the story unnecessarily set up threads in the story that went nowhere (note to Netflix scriptwriter: you could fix this). [The main one being Wes' mother. Why were suggestions about her woven into the story so much when she really had nothing to do with the outcome? I expected this much set-up to have some impact further down the line... but no. (hide spoiler)] Otherwise, I really lovely queer YA book, which I highly recommend.
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The Summer of Everything tells a very wholesome story, part coming of age, part romance, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. It felt like a fluffy, contemporary YA romance. I also loved how much representation across the board there was in the book.
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The Summer Of Everything was a beautiful, heartwarming book about a gang of chaotic queer kids trying to save their favorite independent bookstore from shutting down, while the MC tries to grapple with their lifelong crush on his best friend. I absolutely loved reading about these soft queer boys, everyone should read it for a feel-good read. A very much needed comfort read for our current times.
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Every Julian Winters book is better than the one before it.

I loved the beachy, summery, bookish vibes of this one.
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This was such a lovely, fluffy read that I thoroughly enjoyed! It had everything that I love in a book- LGBTQ+ characters, pining, and bookstores. I found the characters, especially Wes, to be so relatable and their struggles felt really real to me.  The relationship was absolutely adorable and I was really rooting for them the entire time. It was charming, and the whole book felt like a warm hug to me. All in all, this was lovely, and is definitely on my list of top queer books of 2020!
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I really enjoyed reading this book. The character development was subtle in a myriad of ways, and the plot moves along quickly enough to keep interest. I could have used a little more expansion around the ending of the book, but on the whole found the experience very enjoyable.
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Pining, trying your best, wanting to keep it together when everything seems to be falling apart - these are just three of the things Wes is faced with during the Summer after he graduates high school and is somehow declared an adult. The people in his life seem to know what they want and how to do it, but we come to realize everything is more complicated than that. Like the perfect Summer, this made me laugh, cry, fall in love, and yearn for the life of someone who lives above the bookshop in which they work.
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Julian Winters always brings me such JOY with his books, and The Summer of Everything is no exception! Perfect for summer, of course, but a warm romance that brings light no matter what time of the year it is. This one might be my favorite so far! As always, I can't wait to see what he does next!
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This was the most heartwarming, exquisite, sweet, extraordinarily geeky book I’ve ever read. Julian Winters did it again, folks — « The Summer of Everything » is filled with passion, wit, heart, angst, intimate dramas, and most of all : love. I think everyone (and their mother) needs to read one of Julian’s books to understand what it feels like to be hugged right by a book. Damn. This was so good.
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DNF at about 50 pages: The voice is almost there except that it's third person limited that feels omniscient because of the way it refers to his parents by full names and a few other things. It's cute enough but I'm not connected, perhaps because the writing distances me. I would recommend to someone who isn't so persnickety about voice, but it just wasn't hitting right for me, and I felt like as a result it would end up as a 2-2.5 star read.
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If you've read two of the previous books by Winters, you probably know what to expect here. He's great at creating cute, sweet books, grating around a soft gay romance. That's what we get here, as well.

It's a fun nerdy book, as the blurb promises. It's very much character driven and the characters are absolutely lovable. It's perfect for an afternoon reading, when you just want something wholesome and hopeful in your life.
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I thought this book was going to be about a guy who was trying to save his favorite book store while being in love with his best friend. I was so wrong.

This is the story of a guy trying to find himself, and trying to know what he wants to do after high school. I could relate to how Wes was feeling so much, because I found myself questioning my life a lot when I finished high school. And now that I’m in college, I still question myself. Is this the right choice? How do I figure out what I really want to do when I’m so young and haven’t experienced anything?

I thought the plot of this book was really good. It had a great set of characters, all very diverse thank you very much. They were smart, funny, and unique. I rarely see a great friend group like that in books. The writing was easy to read, once you start it you just keep going. The pacing was great and the chapters weren’t too short or too long.

I think that because this book was more about Wes figuring himself out and his relationship with the people that surround him (his best friend and crush, his brother, his dad), there was not a lot of conflict? And so not climax or anything? To me, this felt more like a slice of life and I loved it.

Now for the romance… It was good, however it wasn’t my favorite part of the story? I usually love a great friends-to-lovers trope but in this case it fell a bit flat to me. It doesn’t mean I don’t love the characters, it’s just… I wanted more…. I don’t know what more, but I wanted more. I will say though, the pining was A+.

All in all, this was a solid YA contemporary. And I absolutely recommend it. I’m so thankful I got to read the arc of this book!
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This is such a fun LGBTQ+ book that is mainly set in an indie bookstore. It is about finding yourself and doing what makes you happy. I enjoyed the quirky characters and the music and book references.
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This wasn't my favourite of Julian's works, which goes hands down to his first novel Running with Lions. Despite that, this was still an enjoyable read, with engaging characters and a fun premise. To be honest I think the part I found most off-putting was seeing the amount of staff working in the bookshop each day despite limited sales. I could see the writing on the wall far earlier than any of the characters, purely as a fellow bookshop employee who can only dream of that kind of staffing!
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The Summer of Everything was my first Julian Winters book, and this was exactly the cute & lighthearted rom-com that I needed right now. The characters work in a bookstore, and I enjoyed reading about this friend group. There was good representation.

At times, it felt like thet were a few too many storylines, and I wish the book would have been a little more focused. It still works well, and it's a good read. This story is so cozy and comfortable, and I kind of want to live here. I loved the mention of bookstagram! I will definitely check out more from Julian Winters.

CW - mentions of racism & homophobia, panic attacks, cancer
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I LOVE EVERYTHING THAT JULIAN WINTERS CREATES!! Why I don't know if anything will ever top "running with lions", the worlds that Winters creates are so engaging, thoughtful, and full of life. What I love most about this book is that it is so relatable, complex in its delivery, and overall a blast to read! You will be rooting for these characters and waiting to see how their story unfolds!
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this was very, very cute :') 

i will admit that i'm picky with my YA contemporary novels, but reading this one felt like the warmth that slowly spreads throughout your body after taking a sip of slightly too-hot tea. and i just loved it!! 

there were definitely little moments that i found to be cringe-worthy, and too much like the "adult author tries to be hip with the teens" style of writing that i tend to not like with YA contemporary, but my feelings about the rest of the book definitely outweigh those cringey lines. 

i just absolutely loved the diversity in this book, from the racial diversity to the lgbtq+ diversity, i loved it all. i loved the casual queerness of so many characters, and it's something that i will never get tired of reading about in books. the aroace character, the nonbinary character using they/them pronouns and the casual discussion of a binder!!! the characters who are queer but comfortable not identifying as anything more specific!! i loved it so much.

i'm not usually a huge fan of slowburn friends-to-lovers tropes, but this was so cute and done really well!!
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