Title: The Summer My Life Began
Author: Shannon Greenland
Publisher: Speak (Penguin)
Release date: 10th May 2012
♔ ReviewElizabeth Margaret—better known as Em—has always known what life would contain: an internship at her father’s firm, a degree from Harvard and a career as a lawyer. The only problem is that it’s not what she wants. When she gets the opportunity to get away from it all and spend a month with the aunt she never knew, she jumps at the chance. While there, Em pursues her secret dream of being a chef, and she also learns that her family has kept some significant secrets from her, too. And then there’s Cade, the laid-back local surfer boy who seems to be everything Em isn't. Naturally, she can’t resist him, and as their romance blossoms, Em feels she is living on her own terms for the first time.
Em, our protagonist, has her life all played out. However, that's a future her family has decided for her. Because living in a successful and strict family, even if she doesn't realize it, means her lack of freedom. She has finished highschool, will spend the summer in an internship at her father's law firm and will be attending college at fall to study law. Now, what if a letter (from a newly-discovered aunt) comes home inviting her to spend the summer and her B&B like real vacations?
The Summer My Life Began wasn't what I expected. I thought it would be a perfect summer read; light, nice and highly enjoyable. But while it was nice, it lacked the depth I seek in my reads. It felt like things were too good to be true. In this book everything was nice, everyone was always happy and excited. To the point that when there was some "trouble", it felt too forced and uncharacteristic and out of the blue.
Another thing that bugged me was the little characterization. Like I said, everyone seemed to be happy at all times. As the story went on I found the turns a tad too easy to guess, and the love story appeared out of nowhere, with little feeling.
It was so sad to see this book disappoint me! I really hoped I'd enjoy it, and while it was still nice, the points mentioned above kept me from getting into it.