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September 10, 2012

Review: The Summer I Learned to Dive by Shannon McCrimmon - Juhina

Title: The Summer I Learned to Dive
Author: Shannon McCrimmon
Publication date: May 7th, 2012
Genre(s): Young Adult (Contemporary)
Challenges: Contemporary
Source: Author
Format: egalley
Pages: 163
Since the time she was a little girl, eighteen-year-old Finley “Finn” Hemmings has always lived her life according to a plan, focused and driven with no time for the average young adult’s carefree experiences. On the night of her high school graduation, things take a dramatic turn when she discovers that her mother has been keeping a secret from her—a secret that causes Finn to do something she had never done before—veer off her plan. In the middle of the night, Finn packs her bags and travels by bus to Graceville, SC seeking the truth. In Graceville, Finn has experiences that change her life forever; a summer of love, forgiveness and revelations. She learns to take chances, to take the plunge and to dive right in to what life has to offer.
The Summer I learned to Dive was an enjoyable contemporary; a cliched smart girl who never had a social life who just studied at home to get into college discovers a secret her mother kept from her all these years. She found out on the night of her high school graduation. This is where Finn takes off on a journey and finally learns to have confidence in herself and gain independence from her mother.  
I personally thought this novel was a fun read, but it was very predictable. The writing was great, the narration also, but I just felt that the storyline was cliched and the romance was just too obvious and fast. The I Love Yous came way too suddenly and their behavior towards each other made it seem like they've been together for ages, not a couple of weeks. Also, the problem in this novel was a bit too simplistic, and that could be mainly because the novel is less than 200 hundred pages. I just hoped I was more emotionally invested because what Finn went through was no easy thing, however the way the shocking revelations were presented sort of deflated the climax of the book. 
However I did enjoy the secondary characters, especially the two sisters who work in the same diner as Finn. They definitely felt more alive to me, while Jesse, her love interest, fell flat. Even with saying all of this, I did enjoy the novel, it was a breezy summer novel, even if it was packed with cliches. I'm sure other readers will enjoy this. Maybe ones that are younger than me. This novel has a sequel, which is why it was left open ended, so if you're planning on reading it, be on the lookout for the second novel in this series.


  1. sounds fun but maybe not for me . gr8 review

  2. Not my book, I don't think... thanks for the helpful review! :)

    Also, I see you are currently reading Stormdancer and Farah is reading Unspoken. I had to DNF the first one but I loved Unspoken! I can't wait to see what you both think. :)

  3. It's too bad this was so cliche and predictable, but I'm glad you were still able to enjoy it!

  4. Whoa! Great review, i've noted some stuff to take into consideration for my book.

  5. Not a fan of cliches and predictable but I do love a fun fluffy read sometimes. Might be a quick read for one day. I am curious about the revelation and Finn's summer of discovery. I like books like that.