The Last Summer (of You and Me) by Ann Brashares

The Last Summer (of You and Me)


Riley and Alice, two sisters now in their twenties, and as fiercely different as they are loyal, have spent every summer at their parents’ modest beach house on New York’s Fire Island. Each year, they return to the house and community they have known since they were children—and to Paul, the boy next door. But this summer marks a season of change: budding love and sexual interest, an illness, and a deep secret force all three to confront the increasing complexities of their lives and friendships.


The Last Summer (of You and Me) did not start off very good for me. Up until 50% I had a really hard time even focusing on the story. I am not sure why. Something about the way it was written did not keep my attention even when I was actively reading it. I kept finding myself thinking of other things.

Then around half way through I was able to focus on the story. It still wasn't very good, but I did read the last half without zoning out. The story itself is...I really did not like it. It surprised me since I loved My Name is Memory by the same author. That was one of my favorite books I read last year. To follow it up with this book was just...yeah. I hated all of the characters and couldn't understand them at all. I did not like it.

The story starts off with Alice waiting at the ferry docks for Paul. She has been friends with him forever, and he is her sister Riley's best friend. Alice was really tedious to read. The first half was a lot of remembering years past and everything was this huge melodramatic mess. Alice loves Paul and always has. Paul loves Alice but for some reason he cannot show it. He has to be horrible to her and for some reason he has this wall that has to stay up between them. He tries to stay away from everything he wants for some reason. I really didn't understand him at all. He cannot let himself love Alice, he has to punish her for making him love her. It is just...I didn't understand him at all.

Alice, even though she is in her early twenties, still acts like the little kid who wants to play with the big kids. She kind of makes it so she is just tagging along and not really apart of everything. She always seemed to be miserable, but she never really did anything about it. She would complain a lot, or was afraid to do things Paul and Riley did, but didn't want them to know. It was just really kind of boring the way it was written. I am not sure why Alice liked Paul, or Paul Alice, or Riley or anyone.

Riley was my least favorite character. I really hated her, especially in the second half. She knew that Alice and Paul loved each other, but she still broke them up. She didn't really care that they were together, and when Alice is sacrificing everything for Riley that is how Riley pays her back. Months and months of not telling Paul, and Alice not breaking her word to her sister to keep her secret. Riley didn't even seem to care if she lives or dies, she just wants to be in the water and look for dolphins. I kept thinking how selfish can you be? You see Alice hurting, you see Paul hurting, you know you are causing this and yet you do nothing to try and help them fix it. I just really hated her. I don't know what she ever did to have Alice be so selfless when it comes to her sister. I just can't get over everything she gave up for her sister who doesn't seem to care about anything. Ugh.

Overall not a very good book. The writing was really boring and melodramatic and just...I didn't understand any of the characters or why they were the way they were. I wish I would have, then maybe I would have enjoyed this book.

Rating: 2/5

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