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Review: Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler!

According to Anna’s best friend, Frankie, twenty days in Zanzibar Bay is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy every day, there’s a pretty good chance Anna will find her first summer romance. Anna lightheartedly agrees to the game, but there’s something she hasn’t told Frankie–she’s already had her romance, and it was with Frankie’s older brother, Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.

TWENTY BOY SUMMER explores what it truly means to love someone, what it means to grieve, and ultimately, how to make the most of every beautiful moment life has to offer. (from Goodreads)
♥ Favorite Line(s):
"Sometimes you gotta just take things for what they are and appreciate them, not try to label it or explain it. Explanations take the mystery out of it, you know?"
My thoughts:
I should have known. I should have known that this book would leave me disappointed. From the sea glass heart cover to the boy-centric description to the protag who was a little too young for my liking all of the clues pointed to a story I wouldn't fall for. In my defense I thought the timing of my reading this was perfect! I was on a super dark story streak and wanted something light-hearted and fun. I needed to go to the beach, if only in my mind. I was prepared for a doughnut read and instead grabbed hold of a handful of icing. I had such high hopes for this as a cleanser, but alas it just didn't do it for me.

Twenty Boy Summer is a story about loss and love but somehow had no discernible substance. I was unaffected by Anna's Sad Girl act and Frankie just made me want to throttle her. And their relationships with the boys they meet in Zanzibar Bay? I barely remember the boys' names let alone care at all what happened to them. Each character seemed two-dimensional and severely underwhelmed me. I couldn't connect with them and therefore didn't connect at all with the story.

The only element of this book that I loved was the setting. As that girl who would love to move to the beach for a summer to work in a shady seaside diner and sunbathe all day, the images of Zanzibar Bay and the beach house were right up my alley. I loved getting to go on the cross country journey with Anna and can relate to going away from home for the first time. When I first traveled out of my tri-state area I had many of the same reactions as Anna.

I really, really tried to get into this story. I hate disliking a book and try very hard to find something enjoyable in every read. I just don't think I was in the right time in my life or frame of mind to find this likeable. I also felt very cringey over the way virginity and sex were presented in the book. I don't really want to get into this topic, but because of this and my level of enjoyment I chose to not finish the last thirty or so pages of the book.
Summing it up:
Just couldn't get into it. Didn't finish.

"Down By The Water"-The Drums,