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Someone Like Summer Hardcover – July 3, 2007


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 650L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen (July 3, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061140996
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061140990
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 5.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,855,846 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* In Kerr's stirring teen romance, there are many parallels with Naylor's popular Alice series, including Dangerously Alice (see p.41): in both, the narrator is a smart high-school junior with a sweet older brother and a widowed father who is dating a nice woman. But the big difference here is that issues of race, class, and politics (including the war in Iraq) are a part of the contemporary Romeo-and-Juliet drama. Tall, blonde, blue-eyed Annabel, 17, is in love with Esteban, a Latino immigrant, who turns out to be part of an undocumented group of workers in her town in the Hamptons. The love is intense. They can't keep their hands off each other; in fact, he is the one who stops them from going too far. Prejudice is rough from all sides, including the town's powerful benefactor, who targets the illegals, and Esteban's older sister, who calls Annabel "flour face" and thinks all white girls are loose. The main characters disturb all the stereotypes. Annabel's loving, gruff dad employs illegals because he can pay them less, and he treats them well even as he badmouths them--but no way will he allow Esteban to hook up with his daughter. As things build to a searing climax, Annabel realizes she has asked little about Esteban's dad, who was assassinated back "home" in Colombia. And Kerr crosses other romantic boundaries. Esteban is short--he stands on his toes to kiss Hazel Rochman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

"Kerr gives a sensitive rendering of a biracial romance in this timely novel." (Publishers Weekly)

"A stirring teen romance . . . issues of race, class, and politics (including the war in Iraq) are a part of the contemporary Romeo-and-Juliet drama." (Booklist (starred review))

"Kerr crafts an agile contemporary tale of interracial young love. A masterful story from a critically acclaimed author." (Kirkus Reviews)

"The field of YA literature has been enriched for decades by the fine work of M.E. Kerr, who has never hesitated to tackle controversial topics." (KLIATT)

"The book has an integrity of conception that is a solid base for the sophistication of its wit and humor." (Chicago Tribune Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Peter on July 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Throughout her legendary career, M.E. Kerr has demonstrated an uncanny knack for writing exactly the right book at exactly the right time. GENTLEHANDS made the atrocities of the Holocaust vivid for late twentieth-century American kids. NIGHT KITES was the very first novel from a mainstream publisher to feature a gay man with AIDS. LINGER provided a stunning (and rare) fictional depiction of the first Iraq war. Now we have SOMEONE LIKE SUMMER, a romance between a Long Island girl and an illegal immigrant from Colombia. Considering how long it can take to write a book, not to mention the lengthy publication process that follows, how amazing that this book is being published at exactly the right time -- as our country is embroiled in a controversial battle over immigration. Ms. Kerr has done it again!

The book is timely and topical but -- even better than that -- it's a great love story. The romance between its multifaceted protagonists, Annabelle and Esteban, is emotionally-involving and heartbreaking, as both teens battle family and community resistance to their relationship. The dialogue is fast-paced and often humorous. This book reads like a dream.

Buy a copy of SOMEONE LIKE SUMMER and throw it in your beach bag; it's the perfect "beach book" for Summer 2007. When the season's over, shake the sand from its pages, and place it on your bookshelf. Sometime in the dark days of winter, you'll want to read it again -- and you'll be instantly transported to a time of barefoot walks on the shore, foggy afternoons in the sand dunes, and warm romantic nights, as you experience this perfect summertime romance again.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By G. K. RN on July 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book was pretty good. It was fast-paced and held your interest, and the romance was cutesy and nice.

But it seemed a little bit random to me. There was something sort of off about Esteban--I couldn't put my finger on it, but he was strange. Also, his romance with Annabel--where did it come from? It basically started out of the blue. They looked at each other. And in their first-ever conversation, it was just..odd. Then out of nowhere, BAM, they're head-over-heels for each other. The lack of a build-up to this was very disappointing. People complain about the lack of build-up in Stephenie Meyer's "Twilight," between Edward and Bella. But that couple had much more basis than Esteban and Annabel.

Then other things just didn't seem to fit. Such as Virgil and Mitzi's break-up, and Virgil wanting Mitzi to be tested for AIDS. Did we ever find out anything from there? No. Also, when Esteban wrote the song--about someone like summer. Nothing else ever came from it. Just..random.

All in all, it was a good read, but it doesn't leave you thinking, wow, that was the greatest book ever. No, it actually leaves you wanting a better, more fulfilling book, if you ask me.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Charlotte Blasier on September 12, 2008
Format: Hardcover
As a fan of ME Kerr and a librarian, I was quite excited to see this book arrive at our YA department. As soon as I saw the author's name I knew it was a must read. Unfortunately, I got 90 pages into the book and had to stop reading. The characterization was completely undeveloped and the dialogue was painful. I felt like the dialogue between the two main characters sounded like an episode of California Dreamin' or another one of those horribly acted Saturday morning teen shows from the 90s. I could understand Esteban spoke poorly since English was not his first language. But Annabel, her English was nearly as bad. Some of her sentences made no sense or were just very awkwardly worded. The plot development was poor as well. In young adult writing every word is important to the structure and tone of the story..not so in this story.

I think ME Kerr is a wonderful author and I love the connection with libraries she has, but this book was just a complete mess in my opinion. I have never written a bad review before and I dont want to hurt anyone's feelings. I was just so surprised this book came from such a talented YA author.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By TeensReadToo on July 4, 2007
Format: Hardcover
In an age when questions of illegal immigration and exploitation of workers increasingly threaten to divide American society, M. E. Kerr presents a story of young interracial love that could be found anywhere in the country, not just in the resort town of Seaview, NY. All of the characters are here: the overt racist, protected by a successful position in the community; the young intellectual trapped between what he knows and who he loves; the businessman using illegal immigrants to his advantage, while convincing himself that he is doing them a favor; the immigrants themselves, some legal, some not, trying to build a life within a new culture, but also trying to retain their own heritage; and the young lovers, one hoping to improve himself, but constrained by the fact that he is in the U.S. illegally, and one too naïve to understand that love simply cannot conquer all. Yes, they are all here--and Kerr doesn't shy away from the ups or the downs.

Kerr specifically showcases the complexities of prejudice in the character of Annabel's father, Kenneth Brown. Although he constantly belittles the Hispanic population, referring to people as "muchachos" and refusing to learn the names of his workers, simply referring to everyone as "Pedro" or "Jose," he seems to truly believe he is open-minded and forward thinking, simply because he is willing to hire Hispanic workers. The fact that he pays them less than half what he would pay an American worker doesn't register as racist whatsoever: "It's a darn good deal for them .... Most of them don't speak English, and some don't even have papers. I don't ask questions. I give them steady work. They learn on the job some of them, and they can earn as high as three hundred a week" (p. 12).
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