REVIEW: The Last Summer Of Us by Maggie Harcourt

Title: The Last Summer Of Us
Author: Maggie Harcourt
Publication Date: May 1st 2015
Publisher: Usboure Publishing
Part of a Series?: No, A Standalone
I Got A Copy Through: Usbourne YA (Thank You!)
Buy Links: Amazon IN || Amazon US || Amazon UK || The Book Despository || Wordery || Foyles || Waterstones || WHSmith || Kobo || Google Books
Blurb Description: Limpet, Steffan and Jared. Three best friends crammed into a clapped-out rust bucket of a car on a whirlwind road trip to forget their troubles and see out the end of the summer. But no matter how far they drive, they can’t escape the hidden secrets and slow-burning romance that could upset the balance of their friendship – perhaps forever.
I came across Maggie Harcourt’s second book, Unconventional, in January of this year and it was
ONLY THE MOST ADORABLE THING EVER (and my first five star read of the year!)

I immediately stalked Maggie, and found out she had another book – one about three best friends on a road trip and I knew I NEEDED to read it. And so, when the lovely team at Usbourne agreed to my review copy request, I was BEYOND overjoyed! Hello new Maggie Harcourt book!

Since doing thoughts during a review is my new thing, here goes:

·         While I wasn’t EXPECTING this book to be a fluffy romance filled with fandom and cute authors like Unconventional, I did expect that I would/ wanted to like it just as much.

·         I could tell that this was a FIRST book. The writing and the characters were nowhere near as solid and real as they were in Unconventional. More than building of characters through dialogue, and the reader making their own inferences, the MC NARRATED the different personalities of her friends and herself, sort of giving you her opinions and not letting you get to know the characters yourselves.

 ·         To clarify what I meant above (^) OVER THREE QUARTERS OF THIS BOOK WAS FILLED WITH MUSINGS AND THOUGHTS. The dialogue was SPARSE at best, with about half a page of talking every three pages. I’m not kidding.

·         Hence, I got the feeling that I saw seeing a FILTERED version of these characters, from someone else’s point of view - one that was obviously not my own – because I BARELY HEAR FROM THEM IN A 300 PAGE BOOK. It was a strange experience, and I’m not entirely sure I liked it.

·         Moving on - I LOVED THE ROAD TRIP. It was a very different one – one with no real destination that really brought to life the “It’s the journey not the destination” quote. I loved the strange things they saw on the way like the Elephant and the Ostrich Camp and the Biker Gang wedding. It was a journey to find yourself and I loved it.

·         I also really liked how Maggie dealt with the “We are not the sum of our parent’s choices” theme, because it is VERY important. A lot of what we learn we learn from the people who raise us, and they face that your parent’s mistakes aren’t your fault was handled very well.

And that’s it. I feel like I can’t properly form an opinion about this book because I NEVER REALLY GOT TO KNOW MY INTERPRETATION OF THE CHARACTERS. I felt like an unwanted outsider reading someone’s private story, and I don’t know what to make of that.
If you’re into road trips and books on the bonds on friendship and family, I’d recommend this book! 3 stars. 
Image result for maggie harcourtMaggie Harcourt was born and raised in Carmarthenshire, west Wales. At 17, she moved to London to study English Literature - and later took a Master’s degree in medieval literature - at University College London.
She always wanted to be a writer, but has also worked as a hotel chambermaid, a PA and for a French chef along the way, as well as spending several years involved in convention running. Writing is still her favourite thing, but she also loves the theatre. She currently lives in Bath - where she can usually be found in a bookshop or somewhere near the river. She guards the secret of her favourite coffee shop jealously, because she has the perfect spot picked out there for people-watching.
You can follow her on Twitter and on Instagram.
She is represented by Juliet Mushens at Caskie Mushens.
Have you read either of Maggie Harcourt's books? What did you think of them?
What are some of your favourite Road Trip novels? 
Who are some of your favourite fictional friends?
I can't wait to hear from you!

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