I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Released: May 11th 2021
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published by Berkley Books
“A book you’ll think about for days after you’re done.”~ Under the Covers
With a tag line like ~ Two best friends. Ten summer trips. Once last chance to fall in love ~, I was expecting a cutesy rom-com full of vacation cliches and summer romance. What I got was a bittersweet tale of two people who have absolutely nothing in common, but still make you fall in love with them; a story about friendship, family and love that makes you laugh, and cry, and get that feeling in your chest where you just *feel*. And I loved it.
Poppy is that small town girl who ran as far and as fast she could. Alex is that small town boy who ran straight home as soon as he finished college. They become unlikely friends after a chance meeting when a mutual friend set up a ride share at the end of freshman year of college. This leads leads to their ten years of annual Summer Trips – sometimes they only time they see each other with the long distance between their jobs and adult lives. The story alternates between dual perspectives: present, when Poppy is trying to convince Alex to take one last trip with her, to save their friendship after two years of barely speaking (thanks to a mysterious incident that occurred on their last trip); and past: where the story takes us through each of their past Summer Trips and how they became each other’s best friend.
To me, there were 3 parts to this book:
Part 1: Meeting Poppy and Alex. They’re a bit cliche – total opposites and not to sure how I feel about them being paired up romantically. I’m getting some good laughs, “It aspires to not smell like a butthole that’s smoking a blunt” (cue immature giggle here) and the setting is pleasant. But mostly I’m getting intrigued about what happened in Croatia on their last trip…
Part 2: Ok, I’m starting to like these guys. We’re getting more into their pasts, and pulling out some deep thoughts and experiences that are hitting close to home (uh oh, my feelings are starting to show). And their friendship through the past trips is so sweet. But what the hell happened in Croatia?!
Part 3: I don’t care if I ever find out what happened in Croatia, I just need Alex and Poppy to make up because I just need their friendship in my life. Please. And this part right here, this is where the story really starts to gut punch you. Where the feelings happen. Where you transition from laughing, to wanting to hug the characters and bring them a hot tea and a blanket, to reflecting on your own life.
If you’re a fan of Beach Read, I think you’ll like this one – on the surface, they’re very different. But they both hit that place of feelings that comes from a really good book. A book you’ll think about for days after you’re done; the kind that puts feelings you didn’t even know you had into words, and then it just starts to make sense.
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