lovestruck summer

There are books with such winding and intriguing paths that you’re never sure exactly where the author is taking you; as much as you may try to guess, you have no way of knowing your destination until you actually reach the end.

And then there are books where the destination is in sight the entire time, but the journey there is so enjoyable that you’re happy to go along for the ride anyway.*

Melissa Walker’s Lovestruck Summer falls into this second category.  Lovestruck Summer is a lively young adult novel that is part romance, part self-discovery, but entirely fun and absorbing. 

The premise of the story:  During the summer between high school and college, Quinn finds herself in Austin, living with her sorority-president cousin and interning at the record company of her favorite band.  Her goal for the summer?  To find the perfect boy for the perfect summer fling. 

Though fairly predictable, both in terms of romantic entanglements and character development, Walker establishes a genuinely likable protagonist in music-loving Quinn and a colorful cast of supporting characters that keep the up-tempo novel funny and well-paced.  Walker uses the setting of Austin, with its college life and well-known music scene, to excellent effect, never overshadowing either the characters or the story, but managing to paint a picture of an appealing city that I, for one, am now even more interested in visiting.  

My one real issue with the book is the number of times the word “shout” is used (unnecessarily, in my opinion) instead of the simpler “said.” It may just be the copy editor in me, but I found the choice of attribution to be distracting to the story.

Editing notes aside, I’d characterize the novel as a light, escapist read, somewhat reminiscent of a Sophie Kinsella or Marian Keyes work, though toned appropriately for its adolescent audience.  As we move into the summer months, Melissa Walker is definitely a name I’ll be keeping in mind when looking for books to pack for vacation.

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*(And of course, there are unfortunately those that fail to interest you in either the destination OR the journey.)

~ by Molly on May 18, 2009.

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