Title : Summer Days and Summer Nights
Authors : Stephanie Perkins, Leigh Bardugo, Francesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Brandy Colbert, Tim Federle, Lev Grossman, Nina LaCour, Jon Skovron, Veronica Roth, Jennifer E. Smith
Edited by : Stephanie Perkins
Genre : Contemporary
Release Date : May 17th, 2016
Publisher : MacMillan
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Maybe it’s the long, lazy days, or maybe it’s the heat making everyone a little bit crazy. Whatever the reason, summer is the perfect time for love to bloom. Summer Days & Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories, written by twelve bestselling young adult writers and edited by the international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins, will have you dreaming of sunset strolls by the lake. So set out your beach chair and grab your sunglasses. You have twelve reasons this summer to soak up the sun and fall in love.
Featuring stories by Leigh Bardugo, Francesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Brandy Colbert, Tim Federle, Lev Grossman, Nina LaCour, Stephanie Perkins, Veronica Roth, Jon Skovron, and Jennifer E. Smith.
Given the title, one would expect that this book will be filled with adorable, cute, and funny love story set in summer. Or, at least, that’s what I’m expecting. But since the world is not a wish-granting factory, some of the stories in Summer Days and Summer Nights are actually sad and depressing and tear me up a bit. Surprisingly, I still like it more than My True Love Gave to Me. Here’s the review of each story :
Head, Scales, Tongue, Tail by Leigh Bardugo – 4.5 Stars
I didn’t expect to like this one! It was really weird and confusing at first, and I almost mark it as DNF. Fortunately, I decide to give it a try and guess what–it became one of my favorites from this book! This story is about Gracie, who one day accidentally saw a monster-like thing in a lake and decide to prove it with her new-found-friend Eli–who may or may not have a secret on his own. This story happens in the span of 3 or 4 summers, so of course no insta-love. Also, the ending took me by surprise, I really didn’t see it coming! Still, I think it’s beautiful and wrap the story nicely.
The End of Love by Nina LaCour – 3 stars
I have mixed feeling about this! On one hand, it’s actually pretty great and it’s a f/f romance (one of the few in this anthology). On the other hand, it’s not that memorable, and I’m already struggling to remember what is it about a few days after I finished it.
Last Stand at the Cinegore by Libba Bray – 2 Stars
The concept is actually unique. It’s about the last night of Cinegore–a horror cinema–before it’s going to be closed and crushed. What I don’t expect is, there’s actually some fantasy in it, and I feel like it didn’t match with the whole concept.. Also, the characters seem fun, but I couldn’t connect with them. So yeah, this is my least favorite story.
Sick Pleasure for A and U by Francesca Lia Block – 4 stars
This one is definitely the saddest story in this anthology, but personally, the most beautifully written. Originally, I thought it didn’t have a sad ending, but now that I’ve read it, a sad ending really fit and made the story more realistic. It’s about a girl name I (yes, the alphabet) who meet a punk-rock boy name A and have a whirlwind romance with him. When I finished it, I kinda sit for a while and stare at the wall and think about how there must be many people who’ve done it. The only problem I have with this story is probably the name ( I wish it has a real name), but still, I really enjoyed it.
In Ninety Minutes, Turn North by Stephanie Perkins – 5 stars
THIS ONE IS MY FAVORITE, OBVIOUSLY! Not gonna lie, this is the first story that I read right after I got the book. Stephanie Perkins never fail to made me feel all giddy after reading her story. This story is actually a continuation from her story in My True Love Gave to Me (which is also my favorite from there), so I’m really excited to meet North and Marigold again. Although it didn’t like what I’d expected, I still love this story a lot, and of course the ending is perfect.
Souvenirs by Tim Federle – 4 stars
I didn’t expect to love this one! It’s about break-up day for Matt and Kieth, so yeah it’s pretty sad, but Tim Federle manages to make it not so sad. I really love the narrator, Math! He’s that kind of guy that’s shy in act but could make sassy jokes in his own mind (like me). I enjoy reading from his POV. As for Kieth, well, I have mixed feelings about him. He’s funny and easygoing, but his ‘funny’ is that kind of funny that could hurt other people feelings, including his own boyfriend Matt. That’s why I don’t really ship these two, but I could tell that Kieth really care for Matt. The ending, as expected, is sad, but also beautiful.
Inertia by Veronica Roth – 3.5 stars
Honestly, I’m not surprised that Veronica Roth set her story in dystopian world. At first, I’m a bit skeptical with this story, because love story are rarely set in dystopian world (this is probably the first I’ve ever read). But I’m so glad I didn’t pass this one because it’s also one of those sad (not that sad, though) but beautiful story. It’s basically about Last Visitation–in which a person who’s about to undergo an operation where there’s only a small chance they will survive, ask for someone close to ‘relive their memories’. In this case, Matt Hernandez ask for his former bestfriend, (girl), to do the Last Visitation. The memory itself is actually just okay, but the fact that they’re reliving it–that Matt is probably going to die–made me tear up a bit.
Love is the Last Resort by Jon Skovron – 4 stars
This story is probably the only story that’s close to my expectations when I heard the words ‘summer love story’. It sets in a resort, with 3 romances going on at the same time. All the romances are cute and Love at the Last Resort is just the story I need after reading some sad love stories.
Good Luck and Farewell by Brandy Colbert – 1.5 stars
I skimmed this one because I couldn’t connect with the characters. Basically, it’s about a girl named Rashida (or was it Rashika? I couldn’t remember) whose cousin is about to move because of her girlfriend’s job. And then they threw a farewell party, and she met a boy who happen to be the brother of her cousin’s girlfriend.
Brand New Attraction by Cassandra Clare – 4 stars
Cassie is one of may favorite author, so I’m really excited for her story and glad it didn’t disappoint. It’s about Lulu Darke, whose father own a dark carnival. When her father suddenly goes missing, her uncle and his step-son came to take care of the carnival. The plot itself is actually simple, but of course there’s still fantasy in it. And the romance, though a bit off, is still cute.
A Thousand Ways This Could All Go Wrong by Jennifer E. Smith – 4.5 stars
This is the second story I read right after I finished Stephanie’s–because you can expect nothing but cuteness in Jennifer’s story. And of course, it turns out to be super cute and adorable that I’m basically bursting with feels. Also, this story feature characters that have an autism, and Jennifer did a great job describing it!
The Map of Tiny Perfect Things by Lev Grossman – 2.5 stars
This one reminds me of Paper Towns (though if you think about it, nothing is similar with Paper Towns). It’s about 2 teenagers who get stuck in a time loop–which basically means you get to relive the same day over and over again, but other people do the same work ‘everyday’ and not realize it. These two then decide to map tiny perfect things that they saw, and I guess it’s beautiful in a way. Unfortunately, the romance was off for me.
Overall, this anthology is great! I really hope Stephanie will edit another anthology in the future.