Series: Summer #2
Author: C.J. Duggan
Pages: 387 (Kindle)
Release Date: July 11, 2013
Source: For Review
Sean looked out over the lake, squinting against the sunlight. He turned to me, his expression sobering as his eyes flicked over my face in a silent study.
“Come on Amy, I saved you once, I’ll save you again.”
I met his stare unflinchingly.
“I don’t need saving.” A wicked grin formed slowly. “Don’t you?”
After a rebellious summer night that almost claimed her life, Amy Henderson – the Onslow publican’s only daughter – is sent away to suffer a fate far worse than any other punishment: Boarding School.
Three years on, a now nineteen-year-old Amy returns to Onslow for the summer. What once was a cauldron of activity with live bands, hot meals and cold beers, the Onslow Hotel now lies dark, deserted and depressing. All fond childhood memories of loitering on the hotel stairs and eavesdropping on customers’ colourful conversations are in the distant past. How had her dad let it come to this?
With the new threat of putting the Onslow up for sale, Amy reluctantly turns to a local tradesman for help: Sean Murphy, the very same Onslow boy who saved her life all those years ago. With his help and that of some old friends, the task is clear: spend the summer building the hotel back up to its former glory or lose it for good.
In an endless summer, Amy soon realises that sometimes in order to save your future, you have to face your past, even if it’s in the form of a smug, gorgeous Onslow boy.
Picking up three years later, An Endless Summer starts off with Amy heading back to the Onslow Hotel after being forced away to boarding school. She’s deferred her entry to University in order to figure out what she wants to do, and to spend one more Summer in the place she’s always considered home. Unfortunately, with in minutes her plans are falling apart. Literally. She falls through the balcony of her family’s apartment above the bar. Lucky for her, Sean Murphy is there to catch her. They hadn’t seen each other since the night before she was sent away, and things sure have seemed to changed.
I think that An Endless Summer started off a lot stronger than The Boys of Summer. I was pulled into the story almost immediately. I liked how it was focused on Amy trying to restore the Onslow Hotel to its former glory rather than on the romance. It’s the one place where Amy always felt at home, and it was a great hang out for her friends. Now it’s in shambles ever since her dad returned to the city to rekindle his marriage. Amy is determined to get the bar and restaurant back into tip-top shape without his help, especially when she learns that her parents plan to sell. It’s a race against time as the community comes together to repair the iconic location. I really liked how all of the messes and damage weren’t magically fixed overnight by some mysterious patron. However, the ending was super duper predictable, and you can see it coming pretty early on. At least it was a happy one, because I do love a happy ending.
As for the romance aspect, I’m not sure if I enjoyed it more in An Endless Summer. It really doesn’t pick up until close to the end, and then Amy and Sean only have three romantic scenes together. I did like how in the beginning it was a game between them. Sean would flirt or say something suggestive to Amy, and eventually she worked up the nerve to give it back to him, effectively shutting him up for a moment. But then Amy was sick of being seen as everyone’s little sister. She’s now a nineteen year old woman and maybe this thing with Sean isn’t a game anymore.
In the end, I did enjoy An Endless Summer. It’s focus on finding out what you want out of life and the importance of accepting help from those close to you was refreshing. I also hadn’t realized that The Boys of Summer was set in the 90s, but this one definitely is! I adored all of the little 90s references, some of which I remembered from my own childhood. The Rubik’s cube scene at the end was super sweet!
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