Book Review: Night Owls and Summer Skies


Rebecca Sullivan

Rating: 2 out of 5.

published: 12th May 2020
spoilers? no

Goodreads

Lumberjanes meets the frothy, fun tone of a YA Marian Keyes in this cute romance between two girls away at summer camp

Emma Lane’s forced to face her fears when her mother unceremoniously dumps her on the doorstep of Camp Mapplewood, abandoning her for the summer while she heads off on a cruise with her latest husband. It’s the last place Emma wants to be with scary creatures, creepy crawlies, and much that can go bump in the night. When Emma breaks into the tool shed on her first day there, the fall out from her escapades leads her right into the path of her counsellor, Vivian Black. . . .

Galley provided by publisher

One day, I’ll stop just picking books to read solely because they’re f/f. Unfortunately, today is not that day, so here I am, writing another review of a book I didn’t like, but also didn’t dislike.

Night Owls and Summer Skies is a summer camp romance. And you would think, therefore, that it’d be good. Instead, it seems like a chaotic and disconnected novel, with a creepy “bully has a crush on the mc” storyline.

First and foremost, me and the writing didn’t click, so much of this review should be taken with that in mind. It was readable, sure, but the speech was stilted and occasionally purple prosey. And just generally didn’t sound like something any real person would say a lot of the time. So that made it hard to get into.

And, of course, not liking the writing had a knock-on effect for how I felt about the rest of the book. I didn’t mind the main character, though I know she has been criticised for “overreacting” regarding her parents (although, to be honest, I thought she was underreacting almost), but the side characters were mostly bland and two-dimensional. I still don’t know what there was at all interesting about Vivian (though Walter and Grace were great).

Then there’s the whole storyline with Lauren, which seemed almost unnecessarily creepy at times. Almost borderline sexual harassment. And the whole thing about not sending her home despite that? Feels like maybe the camp should be shut down for not taking care of their charges properly…

But like I said. Take it all with a pinch of salt, because I didn’t like the writing and that always impacts how I like the rest of the book.

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