Member Reviews

Tilla is spending the summer in Jamaica visiting her father with her sister.  They live in Canada with her mother. I loved being in Jamaica- I felt the heat, the waterfalls, the beauty of the Island.  It soon got uncomfortable as even her Walmart clothes were envied as being rich. I loved that the first few pages of the book was a glossary of the Patois language, I admit I had to reference it a lot and still am not sure I was on the same page just like Tilla.

Right when she got on the island she was an outcast and very unfairly judged by the women, one of her aunts was making me very anxious. No one was there to stand up for her and she was being told she was like that cause she was foreign (their term for everyone not from the island).  We find out why they are this way but man it's painful and I felt all the feelings as they slowly tried to strip her of her confidence.

A summer that was supposed to be spent getting closer to her father was spent seeing the worst side of jealousy, betrayal and experiencing her first love and most of all a hurricane.  

I absolutely loved this book; it gave me a huge emotional book hangover as I was feeling all that she was. This book showed the ugly side of choices and the consequences of those choices. I crowed when Tilla finally stood up for herself and found her voice. This is a raw coming of age story set in a beautiful backdrop. 

Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Thank you @netgalley and @stmartinspress for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.

TW: sexual assault

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HURRICANE SUMMER is a powerful and emotional coming of age tale that tackles growing up, family secrets and strife, and culture clash that brings about serious fallout. Tilla is our protagonist, she and her younger sister embarking on an extended summer trip to Jamaica to visit their quasi absent father, who spends some time in Canada with them and their mother, but most of his time on the Island. You can feel the need that Tilla has to connect to her father, as their relationship has become more and more distant the more he leaves them, and the way that Bromfield tackles this desperate need is absolutely heartbreaking. Tilla's other journey is dealing with trying to fit in with a family she doesn't know, in a culture that is completely different from the one that she is used to. This leads me to the many difficult moments and content warnings that I want to bring up for this book. There is colorism, extreme misogyny based in a Patriarchal culture, domestic abuse, and a scene of sexual assault. The things that Tilla goes through are very, very painful, but Bromfield does a really good job of explaining some of the cultural differences by putting them into contextual realties, but doesn't try to excuse them. There is a lot of nuance in this book, and I love that Bromfield trusts her audience to be able to parse through it. And on top of all that, her descriptions of Jamaica are just beautiful and evocative. You really get a sense for the island.

HURRICANE SUMMER is definitely a must read YA novel this summer. You will want to steel yourself, but it will be worth it.

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I really loved Hurricane Summer. What an incredibly moving story, and a wonderful addition to YA OwnVoices literature. Tilla is such a layered, sympathetic main character and I think most everyone can find something in her to relate to. The patois was a little difficult to get used to reading through, but it brought a level of authenticity to the writing that I really appreciated. Such a fantastic coming-of-age novel that will appeal to many adult readers as well.

My thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for the advance reader's copy.

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Thank you Net Galley for the opportunity to read and review this book.

Tilla and her younger sister Mia go to Jamaica for the summer to visit their father, who has been away from their Canadian home for over a year.

I really enjoyed this YA book, although it did take me a while to get used to the Jamaican patois. After looking up a few often used phrases at the directory in the front of the book, I got into the rhythm of it and no longer needed to check translations.

Tilla has quite a dramatic summer, with several turbulent relationships with relatives and her first experience with love. She has struggles with herself, and at the end, is able to come to terms with herself and her inner strength. I would recommend this book to teens as it does reflect the feelings and emotions one feels at that age.

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Thank you Netgalley & Wednesday Books for this eARC in exchange for an honest review!

TW: violence, sexual assault

I rate it a 4.5, rounded up to a 5.

Wow. I finished this book and I had to sit there, thinking about it all. It was beautiful, tense, frustrating, heartbreaking... There aren’t enough adjectives in the world to describe all of the emotions this book made me feel. Frustration was definitely one of the strongest feelings.

Tilla and Mia head to Jamaica for the summer to spend it with their dad. While in Jamaica, Tilla learns more about her family, her roots, and herself. As the summer goes on, the storm builds inside of her and outside on the Atlantic until everything comes to a breaking point and explodes. That’s all I can say about the story without giving anything away.

When I started this book, I didn’t realize how intense it would be. I thought it would be a summer adventure kind of book. Instead, it’s an emotional rollercoaster. Tilla has a really complicated relationship with her dad, and I think it will resonate with so many people. A lot of us crave love from one parent and develop a pattern of accepting love where we can find it, just like Tilla. Because of her need to find love and acceptance, she starts a brief, intense relationship with Hessan that also intensifies the internal storm. Even the reader gets completely sucked into the relationship, with all of its ups and downs. Personally, I just wanted to yell at Tilla to ignore him. I was incredibly frustrated with her, but by the end I came to empathize with her. Her epiphanies at the end of the book made me reevaluate the whole situation. By the end, I was incredibly proud of Tilla.

I also found myself unbelievably frustrated with how everybody was treating Tilla. Every time her aunt said something to her, my blood BOILED. Whenever Diana made a snappy remark, I clenched my teeth. I wanted Tilla to stick up for herself so badly.

The only thing in the book I didn’t entirely love was the very end. It was a lot of self-reflection that I found myself skimming. Tilla explained a lot of things she learned that summer, which was great. I just thought that it slowed the pace waaaaay down after everything had been at full speed the entire time. However, it also helped me, as a reader, understand Tilla’s choices a lot more. So, I understand its place in the book.

Overall, a really powerful book. The writing is so beautiful that you’ll lose yourself in the countryside of Jamaica with Tilla. This story isn’t a light one—it will suck you in and destroy you. This book will make you feel things. You’ll have to pick up the pieces at the end, and be stronger than ever for it. I highly recommend this book. It’s a must-read this summer. I think this book will be great for fans of Clap When You Land.

I’ll post my review on Instagram, TikTok, Goodreads, and Twitter on the publication day (05/04). I’m including the links with my review on Netgalley right now. I’ve already posted a picture of it on Instagram to let my followers know that I’m currently reading it.

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Haunting and beautiful! Tilla lives in Canada with her sister and mom, but she goes to stay with her dad in Jamaica for the summer. While the scenery is paradise, her experiences are often the opposite.
This book is a great window to Jamaican culture. There were many content warnings, which I was partly glad to know but was also on edge knowing traumatic events were coming up.
This is a beautiful book that digs into the harsh realities of becoming a young woman. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Thanks to NetGalley and Wednesday Books by St. Martin’s Press for the ARC.

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Wasn't a very enjoyable read for me personally. All throughout I was uninterested in the characters. Overall this book was just not for me, I do see a lot of people enjoying this one far more.

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A fantastic story that delves into Jamaican culture with wonderful linguistics and narrative.
Keeping this review short as I echo what others have said - there is raw and powerful imagery here and this was surprisingly well done.
thank you

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Hurricane Summer is one of those stories I did not want to end.

Tilla and little sister Mia takes a trip to Jamaica to visit their father whom she resents for his absence in their life. They spend the summer in the countryside of the island where Tilla is shamed for her sexual awakening and finds her voice to fight against the cultural backlash imposed on her by her own family.
She realizes that Jamaica is just a devastated paradise filled with her broken family’s secrets and lies.

The books sent me through so many emotions! It is beautifully written with intensity, passion, and Patois. Asha Bromfield shares her spiritual and sexual journey into womanhood in a oxymoronic tale of Love & Heartbreak, Kinship & Betrayal, Living & Dying and Paradise & Devastation.

💭I would love to hear the audio version of this story since majority of the dialect is in Jamaican Patois —which I absolutely loved. I think it really adds to the authenticity and truth to her story!

📝“ In their eyes, I am the Hurricane that was passing through. I am destruction that has uprooted their lives and left everything in pieces. I am their Hurricane summer.”

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Thanks to St. Martin's Press/Wednesday Books + NetGalley for the advance e-copy of HURRICANE SUMMER by Asha Bromfield. Expected publication date: May 4, 2021.

Woah - talk about a book that truly feels like a hurricane of a journey - in the best, emotional kind of way. Tilla's story of straddling two countries, two families, and two cultures completely immersed me and I did not want to put the book down (nor did I want it to end). This is her coming of age story, the one where she takes a stand for herself, uses her voice, and learns the hard truths of growing up.
The comparison of Tilla's journey to the approaching hurricane was exceptionally told.
As someone who knows nothing of Riverdale, or Asha Bromfield before this novel, I am beyond thrilled to have a new must-read author on my TBR.
Truly, this book is a necessity for summer reading.

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Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press/Wednesday Books for a free ebook ARC copy of this OwnVoices | Teens & YA novel by Asha Bromfield.
I received the ARC ebook free of charge and it was my choice to read and review.

Wow. First of all, I cannot believe this is a debut novel. The depth of the writing and themes, the dialogue between characters, the number of times I was tearing up, reflecting on my own life, and thinking about the lives of others that are different from me, made it easy to get sucked into the book and feel that it will be one of the best books I'll read all year.

I found the patois word bank at the beginning of the book super helpful as there is a lot of lingo I was unfamiliar with. Still, I worried I wasn't pronouncing things right in my head so when the audiobook comes out, I'll definitely be listening to it.

I can't think of much else to say really, the author, Asha Bromfield has a great review if you want to read more. She talks about it perfectly in her review and I can't figure out how to get across the same message in my own words so I'll direct you to her review and just say--GO read this book

Trigger warnings: slut-shaming, gaslighting, rape, colorism, infidelity
Representation: Jamaican-Canadian MC & Jamaican supporting characters

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many many readers. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! No spoilers. Beyond amazing I enjoyed this book so very much. The characters and storyline were fantastic. The ending I did not see coming Could not put down nor did I want to. Truly Amazing and appreciated the whole story. This is going to be a must read for many many readers. Maybe even a book club pick.

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I am a own voices reviewer since I am from an island and have went through hurricanes, I also have a strained relationship with my father so I thoroughly related to this main character ! I do wish the book was a little shorter but overall a beautiful story loved the island slang in there !

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Tilla is a teenager who just wants her father to love her as much as she has always loved him. This summer, she and her little sister go to Jamaica to stay with him and his extended family to get to know them better. Immediately her dad leaves to go to work in town for the week, leaving Tilla to navigate this unknown land and family and their harshness alone. She strikes up friendships and more-but there is disaster hidden in each choice. Not to mention the fact that it's hurricane season.

I wanted the world for Tilla and the author crafted a beautiful, heartbreaking story with complex characters. Both the places and the people felt real and alive. The story moved along quickly and was engaging the whole time. I didn't want to put it down. There is so much sadness in the story, but also a good amount of hope. It balances out fairly well at the end. I felt really emotionally attached to characters, which I love. This book also deals with complex issues-learning a new culture, learning family secrets, racism, and abuse among other things. It doesn't skim over the hard parts, but treats them seriously and realistically, which made the story even more emotional and beautiful.

Thank you to Netgalley for an e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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**Review to be posted on my blog on 4/22/21**
**4.5 STARS**

*Hurricane Summer is a story about a girl, Tilla who is sent to Jamaica from Canada, with her sister for the summer to spend time with her father and other family members. The family members she meet though aren’t as welcoming as she thought they would be and her father is as non-existent in her life as ever.

*Colorism and classism is evident in this story and even though I’m Filipino-American, I could relate to it a little, especially when my parents brought me to the Philippines to visit for the second and third time. The first two times I was too young to notice these things. The lighter the skin in Filipino culture, the prettier you are. In Hurricane Summer, Tilla witnesses colorism in her own family, as one of her cousins has the darkest skin out of them all. The way they treat Andre, her cousin, is horrible and not something Cilla understands. Classism shows when her cousin Diana interact with her and the fact that she gets to go to school and not the country boys was an interesting dynamic.

*Tilla’s relationship with her father is so sad because she is yearning to understand why he doesn’t want to be a part of their family. He really just dumps them off in the countryside of Jamaica – really? I was so angry at him. But I’m glad in the end she reaches some heart breaking conclusions about her relationship with him.

*Tilla’s trip to Jamaica really is a hurricane – she’s is a swirling mess of emotion, rage and hurt. So much took place in this one trip, I likened it the summer from hell! The way her family members treated her, the way her cousin sabotaged her, I was livid at them in some parts in this story. But Tilla’s relationship with Andre was the best part! At least she had one cousin who had her back, thank goodness.

*The ending is powerful. Tilla’s emotions and her confrontation with her dad and her feelings was so deep. I was highlighting sentences that spoke to me, that I needed to hear myself. So many of her thoughts resonated with me a lot and I appreciate seeing her take the steps to start to heal what was broken inside of her.

Random Notes:
Triggers: abuse, bullying, slut shaming, death, grief, sexual assault

*This is not at easy read – there are so many heavy topics going on in this book. There is physical, emotional and sexual abuse happening in the family. Tilla’s family members slut-shame her, and her own cousin does something so reprehensible – I wanted Cilla to cut them off forever! I’d never go and visit them if that was my family, I’d have called my mom up ASAP and tell her to book my flight back to Canada.

*Tilla has some moments on the island where she’s meeting boys and yes, she is attracted to a guy who’s already spoken for but it’s complicated because of how it’s set up. There were a few times I was frustrated with Tilla because I could see what was about to happen but I also understood how she wanted to escape everything that was going on. But I’m glad Tilla realized her interest in these guys was because she was trying to fill a void left by her dad. I understood that deeply.

*The story takes place in Jamaica so the language of the island, Patois, and the story uses the language throughout. There is a glossary of words and their definition. After awhile though, you catch on to their way of talking and meaning.

Final Thoughts:
This story swept me away to Jamaica, but we get to see the parts of Jamaica that aren’t the tourist destinations, we get to see it as someone’s home in the countryside. This story is about Tilla coming to find some truths there that are hard to face. She goes through a hurricane of life events in one summer that tests her resolve but she comes out stronger in the end. This is not an easy book to read but there is so much in it that resonated with me. Hurricane Summer is raw, heart wrenching, cathartic and powerful.

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This was an interesting father/daughter story. Tilla is the main character in this coming of age novel that takes place in Jamaica. Tilla is an easy character to fall in love with and I really enjoyed reading her story. Great book.

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I loved the setting,. I loved the feeling of the book but I felt like it was trying to do too much. Everything from the weather to cancer to incest was in there and it was A LOT.I wish the author had chosen three topics to talk about and really dove in because I felt many were left unexplored despite their importance. Even just shoving some into a second book ( a sequel? a spin-off?) would have been better. There were a lot of great ideas here but it was just too much.

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I enjoyed this coming of age novel provided by NetGalley.
Written w Jamaican dialect, the story follows 2 sisters who spend time with their e tended Jamaican family. Family dynamics provide good character development and just the right amount if teenage angst.

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Hurricane Summer is the powerful debut from Canadian actress and singer Asha Bromfield. Behind the stunningly beautiful cover is a story that will anger you and break your heart.
Tilla and her younger sister are sent to Jamaica to spend the Summer with their father and his extended family, and it will be an experience that will shake her to her very foundations. Her relationship with her father has long been strained, she cannot understand why he choses to leave his wife and daughters behind every six months to return to Jamaica, but is hopeful that she will learn what draws him back while on this trip. Things do not turn out quite as planned though and she and her sister are shipped off to the family farm in a rural part of the island , where Tilla in particular is made to feel less than welcome . As she tries to get to know this side of her family she learns some dark secrets, is caught up in a complicated romance and is forced to contend with the power of Mother Nature in the form of a powerful and destructive hurricane.
This is a book that takes on a lot of issues , probably a few more than can really be dealt with in a single story, which is a shame as when the author concentrates on one or two she does a really excellent job. I thought her treatment of female sexuality and misogyny was excellent- believable and thought provoking. I also really loved the inclusion of Jamaican Patois in the dialogue, it helped so much with bringing the setting to life, and I found the glossary at the beginning of the book very useful, though I needed to refer to it less and less as the book went on. Tilla is a very believable character, her frustrations and fears felt very natural, as did the sometimes poor decisions she made, but the one thing that didn't quite ring true was her faith, for most of the book it seemed like she was apathetic at best when it came to religion, but by the end, despite the appalling way she was treated by local church members, especially her aunt, she seemed to find some comfort in faith. There was no real explanation of how she went from A to B, and it just seemed out of character, at least in terms of the way the character had been described up to that point.
I read and reviewed an ARC courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher , all opinions are my own.

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5 stars
TW: death, sexual assault (on page), rape (on page, explicit), colorism, physical abuse (explicit), slut-shaming

"What we go through ... it meant fi serve us ... and if it cyan serve us, it can at least change us. Mek us betta people. Stronger people. You cyan 'fraid of a likkle rain and breeze.'

I'm a simple man—I really am—you give me a book set in the Caribbean and I have to have it.
I'll be honest, I didn't think much of this when I first got my hands on it. I saw that it had to do with Caribbean people and hurricanes, two things I'm well-acquainted with, and thought, "Oh, this'll be an alright book" and MAN was it way more than that.
This book is an absolute five star from me, which, if you know me at all, you'll also know is a bit like watching a horrible catastrophe go down—not common at all but definitely something I won't shut up about for a while.
I mean, just everything about it is absolute gold to me. I'm having a hard time putting into words what I enjoyed when it was /everything/. Let me take it slow and go one by one:
God, do I love the main character. I was under the impression that this was young adult so I was horrified of Tilla being one of those incredibly annoying YA protagonists but, uh, yeah, this is definitely new adult. (Seriously, somebody change the official age range for this because nothing about this reads like YA) And Tilla is definitely not that. It's actually insane how much I related to her—from her relationship with her family to the way she experiences a culture shock—I genuinely saw myself in her. It doesn't really sound like much, but I never see myself in new adult books. I never see myself in contemporary. I never see my friends and my family the way that I saw them in this book.
The characters in this book felt to me like the people I've known in my life and the people I grew up with. I've /known/ Andre in my life. I've /known/ an Aunt Herma. I feel what these characters feel because to me they're people who've existed in my life.
Speaking of, this book got the atmosphere so /right/. It's the kind of thing that I can't explain to non-Caribbean people, but trust me when I say that you will FEEL it when you read this book. I was only in Jamaica for a short while, but the descriptions in this book radiate the atmosphere of all the islands. I mean, I genuinely /saw/ my home in this. The smell of the grass, the look of the towns, the fruits, the type of people you see—everything about it felt so right to me.
Even the emotions surrounding the hurricane were real. I've always grown up around the absolute truth that hurricane season is imminent. It could mean some strong winds for a while or it could mean the absolute desolation of everything around me. The plot of the story, while going around multiple ideas and subplots, ultimately revolves around this upcoming hurricane and what it'll do. The attitude surrounding it was just so...Caribbean, ya feel? I mean, there really is no other way to say it.
I'll say it: this book made me downright bawl. I've noticed a pattern where all my favorite books are things that made me cry and, yep, this goes right in. So many things happened that were just so brutal. I think the reason I can usually stomach horrific things happening in what I read is because they're mostly fantasy. My suspension of belief is very thin. I'm aware this isn't real, therefore I am disconnected from it, But everything about this felt like something that I would see myself—like a story my friend would tell or something I would hear from cousin so-and-so. When horrible things happened it felt like it could happen to anyone I know and it made it so much /worse/. God, this book was so heartbreaking I don't even want to talk about it.
I mean, yeah, there's just so much to say that I have nothing to say at all. Does that make sense? I just feel like this is the first time I've ever seen my people in a book. And not just characters who remind me of them, but characters who /are/ them. Who live like them, who speak like them, who think like them. It really does mean a lot to me. To see yourself, to truly see yourself and the people you know and the places you know to be represented in media is something that can be so life-changing. I think I'll just leave it off with this quote I really like;
"I have learned that when a hurricane passes through, it knows no favor. It takes no precedence. When the time is right and it is ready, it will destroy you. It will destroy everything. Even the good things. Even the things you love."

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