Thu, July 18, 2013

How My Summer Went Up in Flames Review

How My Summer Went Up in Flames book cover

How My Summer Went Up in Flames book cover

How My Summer Went Up in Flames
By Jennifer Salvato Doktorski
Publication date: May 7, 2013
Simon Pulse, 307 pages
Source: Publisher

First she lost her heart. Then she lost her mind. And now she’s on a road trip to win back her ex. This debut novel’s packed with drama and romance!

Rosie’s always been impulsive. She didn’t intend to set her cheating ex-boyfriend’s car on fire. And she never thought her attempts to make amends could be considered stalking. So when she’s served with a temporary restraining order on the first day of summer vacation, she’s heartbroken—and furious.

To put distance between Rosie and her ex, Rosie’s parents send her on a cross-country road trip with responsible, reliable neighbor Matty and his two friends. Forget freedom of the road, Rosie wants to hitchhike home and win back her ex. But her determination starts to dwindle with each passing mile. Because Rosie’s spark of anger? It may have just ignited a romance with someone new…

— Goodreads.com description

ROAD TRIP!

Oh, who doesn’t adore a good road trip book? And there is plenty to like in this book…it just didn’t, um, blow me away? Set my heart on fire? HA, get it…flames…okay anyway.

Rosie is impulsive. I mean, clearly, the book starts with her blowing up her ex’s car. Girl’s got spunk. And while I do like spunk, she was a bit too loco and all over the place for me. First she likes this guy, then what about that one, or maybe this one…

And I know it’s ridiculous, but I have a really hard time with books when I don’t know what guy to root for! Totally throws me off! That she didn’t know who to like was sort of the point, and that’s not lost on me, but just ’cause I “got” it, doesn’t mean I loved it.

So the main character irritated me, which means I was a bit indifferent to this one. On the plus side, though, ROAD TRIP! Which means it was easy, breezy and entertaining for summer.

Anna Reads young adult book blog

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6 Comments

  1. Jen @ Pop! Goes The Reader said:

    I experienced a number of similar problems when I read How My Summer Went Up In Flames. While Doktorski undeniably has potential, the lack of clarity concerning the love story was a definite problem for me. As I said in my review, while I logically understood that Doktorski was likely touching upon concerning the uncertainty and confusion of young love, it’s extremely difficult to invest yourself in the story or in the characters themselves when you have absolutely no idea who to root for. There was a unfortunate lack of direction in that regard, as though the author couldn’t make up her mind until 75% of the way into the story. At various times in the novel I was given the impression that Rosie was romantically interested in each of the boys in turn, and that simply didn’t work for me. It’s a shame as I love road trip novels, and while it was a lot of fun, I definitely lacked a real emotional connection with this story.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Thu, July 18, 2013

  2. kay said:

    Just got this one this week and I am looking forward to reading it, because I do enjoy road trips novels! I’m super intrigued now about the guys, I guess it will feel a bit different not to know which one to root for?

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Thu, July 18, 2013

  3. Melannie said:

    Hahaha I was confused for whom to root for, and I really REALLY liked Matty. And ms. Doktorski said that she was thinking about a sequel from his POV. So yay.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Thu, July 18, 2013

  4. Brianna said:

    I’m intrigued. It sounds like a good theme song for this book would be that Carrie Underwood song about cheating that was popular four or five years ago.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Thu, July 18, 2013

  5. Japanese ninja said:

    A thought I’ve thought about recently is to remember to refrain from excluding audiences and markets. Some fans on twitter, e.g. the Japanese or Korean, with millions of fans. Sure, there are problems where admins don’t speak their audience’s language. But think about this: just one part-time translation service could build 10,000 fans. Isn’t that worth it?

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Thu, July 18, 2013

  6. April Books & Wine said:

    I am so glad I am not the only one irritated by Rosie, ha ha.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Thu, July 18, 2013

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