Book Review

The Complete Summer I Turned Pretty Trilogy: The Summer I Turned Pretty; It's Not Summer Without You; We'll Always Have Summer


We would rate “The Complete Summer I Turned Pretty Trilogy” by Jenny Han with a solid 5 out of 5 stars. This series excels in character development, emotional depth, and its exploration of themes related to love, family, and personal growth. While it may follow some familiar tropes in young adult literature, Jenny Han’s skillful storytelling and relatable characters make it a highly enjoyable and emotionally resonant read.


The Complete Summer I Turned Pretty Trilogy” by Jenny Han is a captivating and emotionally charged young adult series that takes readers on a poignant journey through the transformative summers of Isabel “Belly” Conklin. Comprising three novels – “The Summer I Turned Pretty,” “It’s Not Summer Without You,” and “We’ll Always Have Summer” – this trilogy is a testament to Han’s ability to craft compelling characters and explore the complexities of love, family, and growing up.

Character Development and Relatability:

One of the trilogy’s greatest strengths lies in its character development. Belly, the protagonist, is portrayed with authenticity and depth, making her a relatable and endearing character. As readers follow her from adolescence into young adulthood, they witness her growth, insecurities, and the universal struggles of finding oneself. Han excels at capturing the intricacies of teenage emotions and relationships, making her characters feel genuine and relatable.

Exploration of Family Dynamics:

Family plays a central role in this trilogy, and Han skillfully delves into the complexities of familial bonds. The interplay between Belly, her mother, and her brother adds depth to the narrative, as does the contrast between the Conklin and Fisher families. Readers will find themselves drawn into the warm and sometimes tumultuous dynamics that are part and parcel of family life, which are expertly portrayed throughout the series.

Romance and Emotional Turmoil:

At the heart of these novels is a web of romantic entanglements involving Belly and the Fisher brothers, Conrad and Jeremiah. The love triangle is a well-trodden trope in young adult literature, but Han’s nuanced approach makes it fresh and emotionally resonant. Each character’s feelings and motivations are explored in detail, resulting in a rich tapestry of emotions that keeps readers engaged.

Setting and Atmosphere:

Jenny Han’s evocative writing brings the coastal setting to life, making the beach house and its surroundings feel like characters in their own right. The summers at Cousins Beach serve as a backdrop to the characters’ personal journeys and add an enchanting and nostalgic atmosphere to the narrative.

Themes of Identity and Coming of Age:

The trilogy masterfully addresses themes of identity and coming of age. Belly’s journey from an insecure teenager to a young woman who understands her worth is a compelling arc that will resonate with readers of all ages. Through her experiences, the books explore the choices we make and their consequences, as well as the bittersweet nature of growing up and leaving behind the innocence of youth.

Emotional Impact:

What sets this trilogy apart is its ability to tug at the heartstrings of readers. It doesn’t shy away from tackling difficult emotions, and as the characters grapple with love, loss, and life-altering decisions, readers are sure to experience a rollercoaster of feelings. It’s a testament to Han’s skill that she can elicit such genuine emotional responses from her audience.


“The Complete Summer I Turned Pretty Trilogy” is a beautifully written and emotionally resonant series that explores the complexities of love, family, and personal growth. Jenny Han’s relatable characters and evocative storytelling make these novels a must-read for fans of young adult literature. Through the summers at Cousins Beach, readers will find themselves on a journey of love and self-discovery that is both nostalgic and timeless.

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