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A Midsummer's Nightmare Hardcover – June 5, 2012
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"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
A dramatic coming-of-age story set in the decade after World War II, "Warlight" is the mesmerizing new novel from the best-selling author of "The English Patient." Pre-order today
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"Whitley is a vivid, flawed, loveable protagonist and this novel isfilled with relatable characters. With honest, authentic language, Keplinger deals deftly with the raw emotions affecting divorced and blended families."―VOYA
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Okay now that my author gushing is out of the way, lets talk about Whitley. Whitley has some serious daddy complex issues. Her parents got divorced when she was young and she never sees her father, except during the summer months. Her mother never remarried and her brother moved away and got married so there was never a male figure in her life. She doesn't realize that she has any issues though, to her, life is a bunch of drunken nights and hookups. Her mom doesn't care about what she does and it isn't until she finds herself meeting her father's new family that she realizes what a difference a "family" can make.
I like that the author gave Nate some struggles of his own. After his father passed away, Nate took to drinking and drugs. He was out of control for a few years and it isn't until he hooked up with a chick who totally brushes him off the next morning that he realizes that his partying isn't so great anymore. Then the poor guy gets kicked in the balls when he meets his soon to be step-dad's daughter, the one and only "bang & bounce", Whitley. (okay I totally made up the whole bang & bounce, that's not her nickname) So now he's saddled for the summer with the chick who totally blew him off after they slept together and to make matters worse, her crazy party ways are having a negative impact on his 13 year old sister.
The cast of characters were awesome in this book. I thought the secondary characters were great, from the gay friend who wasn't your typical stereotypical "gay guy" in a book (You know what I'm talking about) to the younger sister who is excited to have an older sister and looks up to Whitley and even the step-mom who is trying to be attentive and make Whitley feel comfortable in her new environment. Very rarely to I like ALL of the extra characters in a story but I did with this one.
It seems like sex is a huge theme with Kody. The DUFF was a girl who has sex with the guy who called her the "designated ugly fat friend", Shut Out was a jock chick who gets her team members and friends to withhold sex from their boyfriends for the season, and then of course this one with Whitley who is so majorly messed up and out of control. However, with all the other stories, the characters see their ways, right the wrongs and they get a HEA. In this case, it took her scandalous behavior being broadcast via a Facebook group page in order for her to see how wild she'd become.
Yes there is a lot of drinking that takes place in this story but the author shows the consequences of such behavior. She didn't sugar coat what happens due to Whitley's partying. She always shows the fall out to everything that happens in her books. This is a great book and I cannot wait to see what she comes out with next.
A Midsummer's Nightmare is the story of Whitley who has struggled for a lot of years to get her parents attention (drinking, partying, smoking). She's virtually friendless and couldn't care less. But when she goes to spend a seemingly average summer with her dad, she finds he's getting married. And his new wife's son is the boy Whitley woke up next to day after graduating. Her one night stand, Nathan.
Her summer is full of learning life lessons (she should have learned a long time ago) and finding out what family really means.
I do have to say that Nathan became one of my most favorite book boyfriends! A Star Wars bobble head collection AND a basketball player, a Backe To The Future fan and... the list of good qualities in this boy make me swoon. He even makes it okay to say the word.
Overall a great read I've already recommended it for a few friends.
Whitley is pretty much the perfect example of strong book heroines. In the beginning although part of me felt sorry for her, a larger part really disliked her. She made a lot of foolish mistakes like staying out late, drinking a lot and hanging out with practical strangers. Whitley had one of those glass half-empty point of views, always overlooking the good things and people in her life. Luckily as the book progressed she started to open her eyes. However, unfortunately, it does take one or two really bad and emotional situations to get her to wake up and basically smell the love. I found her journey towards self-realization to be practical and very-well paced. She didn't immediately realize the error of her ways, it took a lot of bad decisions and consequences to get through to her.
Nathan a.k.a. Whitley's one-night stand a.k.a. Whitley's father's soon-to-be stepson is basically a sweet heart. He's caring and uber-protective of both his little sister *swoon* and Whitley. What I found so remarkable was the fact he never gave up on Whitley. Every step of the way Whitley fought Nathan's kindness, but that didn't stop him. I think Nathan's just generally a good person that recognizes Whitley's pain and doesn't plan on giving up like others seem to have.
At the time that I read this book it was still summer and therefore I was declaring it the perfect day at the beach or day by the pool read, however now that it's Fall and pretty frigid outside that perfect reading location doesn't really work. I'm now declaring A Midsummer's Nightmare the perfect all-around book to relax and escape with. It's perfect for snuggling up in a comfy chair with a fuzzy blanket and cup of cocoa and maybe a snack or two because like I said, this is one book you will not be able to put down!