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The Summer of Impossibilities

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Skyler, Ellie, Scarlett and Amelia Grace are forced to spend the summer at the lake house where their moms became best friends. One can’t wait. One would rather gnaw off her own arm than hang out with a bunch of strangers just so their moms can drink too much wine and sing Journey two o’clock in the morning. Two are sisters. Three are currently feuding with their mothers. On Skyler, Ellie, Scarlett and Amelia Grace are forced to spend the summer at the lake house where their moms became best friends. One can’t wait. One would rather gnaw off her own arm than hang out with a bunch of strangers just so their moms can drink too much wine and sing Journey two o’clock in the morning. Two are sisters. Three are currently feuding with their mothers. One almost sets her crush on fire with a flaming marshmallow. Two steal the boat for a midnight joyride that goes horribly, awkwardly wrong. All of them are hiding something. One falls in love with a boy she thought she despised. Two fall in love with each other. None of them are the same at the end of the summer.


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Skyler, Ellie, Scarlett and Amelia Grace are forced to spend the summer at the lake house where their moms became best friends. One can’t wait. One would rather gnaw off her own arm than hang out with a bunch of strangers just so their moms can drink too much wine and sing Journey two o’clock in the morning. Two are sisters. Three are currently feuding with their mothers. On Skyler, Ellie, Scarlett and Amelia Grace are forced to spend the summer at the lake house where their moms became best friends. One can’t wait. One would rather gnaw off her own arm than hang out with a bunch of strangers just so their moms can drink too much wine and sing Journey two o’clock in the morning. Two are sisters. Three are currently feuding with their mothers. One almost sets her crush on fire with a flaming marshmallow. Two steal the boat for a midnight joyride that goes horribly, awkwardly wrong. All of them are hiding something. One falls in love with a boy she thought she despised. Two fall in love with each other. None of them are the same at the end of the summer.

30 review for The Summer of Impossibilities

  1. 4 out of 5

    charlotte, (½ of readsrainbow)

    On my blog. Rep: Jewish mc with juvenile arthritis, lesbian mc, Indian American Muslim mc, Jewish bi mc, side wlw characters CWs: past self harm Sometimes you finish a book and you’re sort of left with a vague annoyance that this is what you spent a portion of your life on. That would be me and this book. It’s not a bad book by any stretch of the imagination. It’s just not a me book. The Summer of Impossibilities follows four girls, whose mothers take them to a lake house for the summer, after o On my blog. Rep: Jewish mc with juvenile arthritis, lesbian mc, Indian American Muslim mc, Jewish bi mc, side wlw characters CWs: past self harm Sometimes you finish a book and you’re sort of left with a vague annoyance that this is what you spent a portion of your life on. That would be me and this book. It’s not a bad book by any stretch of the imagination. It’s just not a me book. The Summer of Impossibilities follows four girls, whose mothers take them to a lake house for the summer, after one’s husband cheats on her. The girls haven’t seen each other since they were five, and they don’t immediately get along. Here, I have to admit, the blurb is somewhat misleading. None of the events that it says happens are much more than blips. I mean, “a boy she despises”, she dislikes him slightly on their first meeting and then decides she does like him. But that’s sort of beside the point. I think what disappointed me most about this book was that I came into it expecting an f/f romance. But that romance barely registers – there is scarcely any development (although this is also true of the straight romances), and it doesn’t happen until very late on. Not only that, the lesbian character seems to all but reduced to her crush on her friend. Throughout every bit of her POV (of which there are also fewer than any of the other characters), there’s very little besides an almost exclusive focus on Scarlett (the crush). It’s either that or, on the off chance it’s not, the homophobia of her church. But by reducing Amelia Grace to her crush, she comes off as a lot less fleshed out than any of the other characters. I could tell you about the hopes, dreams, flaws, and so on of the others. I could not tell you the same of Amelia Grace. And also, I am so tired of reading the whole “lesbian hated by her church community” storyline. It featured a little less strongly here than I feared it might, to be fair, but it was still prominent. Are lesbians not allowed to have wholly supportive parents or something? (Also, an aside: the word lesbian ain’t gonna give you cooties or whatever. You can use it to describe a woman who exclusively likes women. That is its meaning.) Not to mention her love interest is horrible. Like, I got she had traumas to work around and all, but that’s not an excuse to be awful to a character who has done nothing to you. So that put me off reading her POV a fair bit, and also put me off reading Amelia Grace’s POV, because of the aforementioned hyperfocus on the love interest. And then, for all that it’s good the book doesn’t have a wholly straight white cast, some of that diversity does come across as a little forced, for want of a better word. Like how their being not-white or not-straight is emphasised by them making a “white people” or “straight people” comment? It doesn’t happen in this book, but it felt like that sort of vibe. At first, I grant, because once the author had thus established that these characters were not-white or not-straight, that definitely disappeared. (Another aside: there’s a point at the start where the Indian American Muslim characters stop at a petrol station in the South and make some comment about being stared at as if they’ve never seen brown people before. I couldn’t help but think of multiple tweets I’ve seen recently that have been like, the North is as bigoted as the South, if not more. But anyway.) But while I was disappointed, there were still some cute parts (Skyler and Bennett, despite how fast their relationship happened, Ellie and Andres, even though theirs happened even faster). It’s just that couldn’t make up for everything else.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Anna Banana

    4.5 stars OMG this book was so freaking cute!!! It has everything the synopsis promises and so much more! This book is told in 4 POVs: Ellie, who is a biracial muslim girl who has been homeschooled her entire life and the only thing she wants is to have best friends like her mom has. Then we have Scarlett and Sky who are twin sisters who couldn't be more opposite in the way they handle pressure: Scarlett externalizes, Sky internalizes everything. Both of them are going through a lot in their own p 4.5 stars OMG this book was so freaking cute!!! It has everything the synopsis promises and so much more! This book is told in 4 POVs: Ellie, who is a biracial muslim girl who has been homeschooled her entire life and the only thing she wants is to have best friends like her mom has. Then we have Scarlett and Sky who are twin sisters who couldn't be more opposite in the way they handle pressure: Scarlett externalizes, Sky internalizes everything. Both of them are going through a lot in their own personal lives but also their parents are on the cusp of a divorce and they don't know how to feel about it. And finally, there is Amelia Grace who is trying to figure out how to be completely herself without losing her family, friends and her belief in God. This book somehow manages to feel both light and heavy at the same time. So much about this book is very light and fun and it gave me major Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants vibes. But then, there is also each individual subplot going on with each girl and those things...well they weren't minor little things. I found myself relating to something from each girl's life and I shed more than one tear whether it was Ellie talking about never feeling "enough" of her culture or Amelia Grace's fear of her mom loving her husband more than she loves her, and so many other topics that I think so many people can relate to. This book shows us such beautiful perfect and yet damaged depictions of friendship and people that is so realistic. I am so glad I decided to read this book! And if you haven't already, add this book to your tbr because you do not want to miss this YA Contemporary read!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Madalyn (Novel Ink)

    Reading this book felt like a warm hug. There was something so comforting and home-y about it. It’s a love letter to female friendship, and to growing up and growing into yourself. Loved the representation, loved the character growth, loved the summer-y lake house vibes. Highly recommend picking this one up in May!!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kelly Quindlen

    I devoured this book. SO sweet, so much fun, and the romance between two of the girls had my heart racing.

  5. 5 out of 5

    PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps

    Annoying would be the one word I’d use to describe THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBILITIES. The premise is so much better than the execution. THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBILITIES is a story of contrasts. The four MC narrators have the voices and maturity of middle grade characters, yet the f-bombs and sexual dalliances of older teens. I’m not someone who believes what kids read should be censored and wouldn’t have a problem with a tween reading the content. I only mention it because I doubt publishers would clas Annoying would be the one word I’d use to describe THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBILITIES. The premise is so much better than the execution. THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBILITIES is a story of contrasts. The four MC narrators have the voices and maturity of middle grade characters, yet the f-bombs and sexual dalliances of older teens. I’m not someone who believes what kids read should be censored and wouldn’t have a problem with a tween reading the content. I only mention it because I doubt publishers would classify the story as MG and I can’t picture most YA readers enjoying the book. Rachael Allen seemed determined to throw as much diversity into her story as possible and remind readers of that diversity in a manner that didn’t feel organic to the storytelling. The premise that four teens are sharing a home for the summer when their sorority sisters reunite is an intriguing one. The twins Scarlett and Skylar were my favorite characters, not opposites, but with enough similarities and differences that they felt real. Amelia Grace, the lesbian in who attended a church that sends kids to conversion camps was tolerable. Ellie, the tennis player with the personality of a leech was unbearable. I could easily see why she had no friends and cringed at the calculating she tried to make them. Her desperation and neediness, which could have been charming if not so overdone, made me root for the peers who isolated her, which is a pretty difficult feat for a writer as I have no patience for bullies. Part way through I stopped reading Ellie’s sections because she annoyed me so much. I only kept reading THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBILITIES because I cared about the twins.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    E ARC provided by Netgalley A character who has arthritis AND wants to play softball? Yes, please. Unfortunately, this was aggressively YA, so not perfect for my fans of Kasey West or Sarah Dessen, as I had hoped. On the plus side, it started out very early with a character and her boyfriend discussing sex, then went into multiple f-bombs, so I knew right away it wasn't what I wanted. Fine for high school.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Heatherblakely

    Honestly this has so many things I love: friendships and found families and queer romance and self discovery, and I cried several times

  8. 5 out of 5

    . (not active on this account stop adding me)

    from the author's twitter: "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants but with two of the girls falling in love with each other" from the author's twitter: "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants but with two of the girls falling in love with each other"

  9. 4 out of 5

    Christina (A Reader of Fictions)

    Wow, this was so good. It's sort of like The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants meets Things I Can't Forget. It's all about sisterhood, friendship, toxic relationships, and more in this way that feels so real but also very uplifting. There are four first person POVs in The Summer of Impossibilities, which is a lot, but they're done really well. I rarely had any issue with keeping them separate, because they all have unique voices. Skyler, Scarlett, Amelia Grace, and Ellie's POVs all dragged me int Wow, this was so good. It's sort of like The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants meets Things I Can't Forget. It's all about sisterhood, friendship, toxic relationships, and more in this way that feels so real but also very uplifting. There are four first person POVs in The Summer of Impossibilities, which is a lot, but they're done really well. I rarely had any issue with keeping them separate, because they all have unique voices. Skyler, Scarlett, Amelia Grace, and Ellie's POVs all dragged me into the story, and I read this one straight through, because I had to know where life was going to take them. Because it's an Allen book, there's a lot of nuance, and there's no perfect rom-com sort of ending, but the book as a whole made me feel so happy. The plot of the book centers on a summer trip to Skyler and Scarlett's family lake house, after their mother discovers their father has been cheating on her. The mom puts a call out to her sorority sisters /best friends for help, and they all show up with their daughters to stay for the summer. Though the mom plot line is very much background, it's really lovely how the whole thing is about the life-long bonds between women and how incredibly important those friendships are. The girls (Skyler, Scarlett, Amelia Grace, and Ellie) start up their mothers' club from when they were teens, which largely consists of making an "impossible" goal for summer, and these goals are their catalysts for change, though often in ways they do not expect. IMO this made a really great set up, with nice tropiness coming from the plot to add cuteness to a book with a lot of heavy topics. There's really great balance to this novel. Skyler's struggling with juvenile arthritis, which by this point is basically preventing her from being able to play, her hands constantly feeling like she has shards of glass for bones. Her story involves invisible disabilities and her feeling that she cannot cause problems in the family. Skyler's such a freaking sweetie, but she's too afraid to make waves, and it's making things worse for her. She has a cute little romance, but it doesn't get much screen time. This book's way more about friendships than it is about romance. Scarlett thinks her big problem is having been dragged off for the summer just when things were getting good at home. Thanks to her awesome boyfriend, she's accepted now and she's not cutting anymore. Sure, she's nervous about the possibility of having sex with him, but she's sure she'll be ready soon. Allen really delves into what makes a healthy relationship here, and it's on point and something teen girls would definitely benefit from considering. Amelia Grace just came out to her whole town basically, caught in her first kiss ever with another girl. Immediately, she's ostracized, and her mother drags her away from the summer hoping things will blow over. Amelia's story is a crisis of faith. Very religious all of her life, she doesn't want to have to give up either her sexuality or her faith, but she doesn't believe she can have both. One thing I admire so much about this book is how thoughtfully religion is discussed (with Skyler's love of many religions, Amelia Grace's deep faith, Scarlett's agnosticism, and Ellie being Muslim). There's no judgment of faith or a lack of it, only of not being a good person inside of whatever you believe. And there's also a cute f/f romance, though again it's a small part of the book. Ellie took me the longest time to warm up to, mostly because there's so much in Ellie that I related to. Ellie's absolutely desperate for friendship in a way that makes her awkward and push too hard, and oh man do I feel that deep in my bones. There's a special kind of psychological pain that comes from being entirely friendless, from never being wanted around, from always being excluded from groups, and it can really do a number on you. This is the summer of Ellie finally making friends and finally realizing that maybe she was going after the wrong people. Girl, I feel you. There's also some great stuff about the dangers of fitness inspiration stuff on the internet and a little bit on eating disorders. The Summer of Impossibilities is a such a beautifully accepting book. The girls have a wide range of views on things (religion, sororities, drinking), and it really upholds the important of doing what's right for you and not judging others for being better off with something else. It's so motivational and heartwarming. Recommended for anyone looking for a book full of sisterhood and friendship. This may be my favorite Allen book so far!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Samantha (WLABB)

    Rating: 3.5 Stars A family crisis brought these girls physically together, but their new found friendship will bind them for life. This book follows four young women through a summer of great changes. When Scarlett and Skyler's mother discovers her husband's infidelity, she sends out an SOS to her sorority sisters, and they flee to their lake house. There, they reconvene with all the "aunts" and their daughters, Amelia Grace and Ellie. After finding documents belonging to the SBDC, the Southern B Rating: 3.5 Stars A family crisis brought these girls physically together, but their new found friendship will bind them for life. This book follows four young women through a summer of great changes. When Scarlett and Skyler's mother discovers her husband's infidelity, she sends out an SOS to her sorority sisters, and they flee to their lake house. There, they reconvene with all the "aunts" and their daughters, Amelia Grace and Ellie. After finding documents belonging to the SBDC, the Southern Belles Drinking Club, the girls agree to trying to achieve one impossibility this summer. Though they set out to accomplish something impossible, they ended up discovering so much about themselves and each other. The characters each had their own storyline, as well as their own set of issues, and I think because of that, there will be something most readers could relate to. • Skyler is a "caretaker", whose softball dreams have been sidelined due to juvenile arthritis. • Scarlett is short tempered, prone to self harm, and struggling with the decision to get more physical with her boyfriend. • Amelia Grace accidentally came out at a church event. She wants to earn back her position as junior youth minister, but is not sure she wants to sacrifice or hide parts of herself to get it. • Ellie is a biracial muslim tennis ace, who struggled with body image, identity, and loneliness. I enjoyed getting to know all four of these young women, and was rooting for them as they grew and changed and discovered so much over the course of the summer. I was definitely feeling some Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants vibes, as there were four women, experiencing life, love, and friendship in the summertime, but that's where it ended. There were a few things I especially loved: • The focus on female friendships. I didn't only get to enjoy the friendship that formed between the four main characters, but also was treated to the lifelong friendship their mother's shared. And, it didn't stop there. Allen included some examples of healthy and unhealthy friendships, too, which I always love seeing in juxtaposition. • The relationship between the twins, Scarlett and Skyler, was far from perfect. Each held some misconceptions about the other, but even as they harbored some ill will for the other, they still took care of one another. There were some really lovely and tender moments shared between them, which warmed my heart, and reminded me of how special a sister's love could be. • So. Much. Growth. I mentioned it before, but it wasn't only the younger generation that was growing and changing. Allen had the mother's evolving a bit too, and there was one storyline in particular that I really loved. Overall: It started as the summer of impossibilities, but turned into a summer of friendship, change, and endless possibilities. *ARC provided in exchange for an honest review. BLOG | INSTAGRAM |TWITTER | BLOGLOVIN | FRIEND ME ON GOODREADS

  11. 4 out of 5

    Clara Goldberg

    I wanted to like this book, but I just couldn’t. The premise was so amazing but the book ended up being very surface level. It could’ve gone deeper and so much more into each girls lives and their friendships, but it didn’t. I felt most plots of the story were glazed over in favor of focusing on boring and uninteresting ones. The whole story felt very dominated by Ellie and her plots and I did not enjoy that because I found both her as a character and her story to be very surface-level and self- I wanted to like this book, but I just couldn’t. The premise was so amazing but the book ended up being very surface level. It could’ve gone deeper and so much more into each girls lives and their friendships, but it didn’t. I felt most plots of the story were glazed over in favor of focusing on boring and uninteresting ones. The whole story felt very dominated by Ellie and her plots and I did not enjoy that because I found both her as a character and her story to be very surface-level and self-righteous. The writing of her perspective was also way worse than the others. I still don’t understand why the authors decided to talk about attention-seeking Instagram posts and tennis drama that made me think Ellie was about 13 years old, instead of important issues in this book or even developing the four girls’ friendships! In terms of perspective, I only slightly enjoyed Skyler and Scarletts. Ellie’s was infuriating to read and Amelia Grace’s seemed like she nearly watched what others did instead of focusing on her thoughts. I also found it strange that the other focused so much on her being a Junior minister instead of actually coming out which would have made it better, in my opinion. Skyler’s POV had some of the same issues as Amelia Grace’s but overall ok. Scarlett’s was pretty good, the most thought driven out of all of them. Both Ellie and Skyler’s romanced fell flat for me and while I enjoyed the plot between Scarlett and Amelia Grace, I once again found it to be not as deep as it could’ve been. But most of all, the four girls friendship seriously fell flat. You hardly see them all interact with each other, whether it be all together or one on one (Like name one time Amelia Grace and Skyler had a full conversation. You can’t) and then by the end of the book, they’re saying their best friends! It felt so ridiculous and so surface level. I just wish this book had gone deeper. Lastly, please be warned that this book goes into the topic of self harm and describes someone doing it. I was very unhappy that there was no warning at the beginning of the book because this is an issue that can be very upsetting to some people and there was no warning.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Stella Bryson

    First off- I made a good reads account JUST to write this review. That is how much this book annoyed me. I thought the premise of four girls spending the summer together becoming friends was such a good idea but the execution was off. Way off. I am a teenager myself and I just don't understand this book. It sounds like it is written for younger kids but then it used the f-word five times per chapter and also has a great deal of talking about sex. Older kids such as myself would not (and do not) l First off- I made a good reads account JUST to write this review. That is how much this book annoyed me. I thought the premise of four girls spending the summer together becoming friends was such a good idea but the execution was off. Way off. I am a teenager myself and I just don't understand this book. It sounds like it is written for younger kids but then it used the f-word five times per chapter and also has a great deal of talking about sex. Older kids such as myself would not (and do not) like it because it is poorly written and sounds like it would be for middle schoolers. Second, this author CLEARLY does not understand teenagers. She is way behind all the trends and the characters are all annoying stereotypes. They are unrealistic and very frustrating to read. One good example is when the girls are going to a fourth of July party and one of the characters, Ellie, says they must all dress up because "that's what Taylor Swift would do". This part made me literally cringe and I had to stop reading. Rachael Allen does not understand what being a teenager is like, and it's very obvious. All of the reviews saying this book is like the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants are wrong. I read all of Ann Brashares' books and LOVED them. She understands teenagers and their emotions. Rachael Allen does not. The reviews on the back of the book saying how good this book is were obviously written by fellow out-of-touch "young adult" authors. The characters were all extreme stereotypes and annoying. Skylar's problem didn't make any sense. I feel like Rachael Allen could have come up with a better plot than just "not wanting to tell her mom". In the book it is said by other characters that Skyler is bubbly and happy, but I don't see any of that in the book. She is a very flat character. Next, Scarlett. Scarlett's character got better at the very end, but for the most part she was very boring and one-dimensional. Scarlett is said by other characters to be sassy and sarcastic but she doesn't do anything sassy or sarcastic other than rolling her eyes. All the time. It's not that hard to find different body language to use. Ellie is so annoying. I don't understand why all the tennis girls hate Ellie. She is described as kind and funny and athletic. Why do they hate her? Ellie is written way over the top and is the most out of touch character that is written. Rachael Allen doesn't understand what it is like to be bullied online. You become so depressed and hurt that you can't function normally for a long time after the kind of bullying Ellie went through, but she just got over it after one party. That was extremely aggravating to read. Her attitude, being super happy, and trying really hard to become friends with the girls is not only annoying, but it is also unrealistic. Lastly, Amelia Grace. I could not tell you one thing about Amelia Grace's personality. Every time it goes to her point of view it is just to talk about how she is gay. She is never seen having any fun or acting as a regular person. Even though she and Scarlett are very good friends, we only see them hanging out ONCE, and it is not even described in detail. She is written very poorly and I wish we could've seen more of her because she was the only character who wasn't completely and atrociously unrealistic. This is only a small detail but on the back of the book it says that one girl falls in love with a boy she hated. This is very wrong for many reasons. 1. She never hated him. This was never described in the book, she was only a little bit annoyed at him. 2. They literally hang out three times the entire summer. That is nowhere near a long enough time to know whether or not you love someone, plus she never says or thinks anything about loving him. 3. They have one kiss and are in high school. That's not how love works. Teenagers aren't crazy, love-sick zombies just wandering around trying to find someone to kiss. Yet another thing Rachael Allen doesn't understand. She paints Ellie to be the same way, just wandering around parties looking for boys to kiss. This is not true at all. I originally picked up this book because I thought it was going to be a really cute book about summer and girls becoming best friends. It was nothing like that. There is no description of the lake house and what it is like or even what state the girls are in. This story has nothing to do with summer and could take place anywhere at any time in the year and the story would not change at all. I really liked the idea of four girls who spend the summer together and become best friends, but this book was too focused on the girls and their own problems individually. There are hardly any scenes showing that the girls are friends, much less tolerating each other. This book would have been much better is she had focused more on the girls becoming friends and the feeling of summer. Finally, this book has SO much forced diversity. Ellie is half Indian and apparently that matters but the story would not have been any different if she had been white. Amelia Graces' entire personality and point of view were just her being a lesbian and how she was in love with Scarlett. It got old very fast. They tried to fit in ANOTHER lesbian couple into the book, and it just confused me and made me annoyed. In an OFFICIAL study done by David Spiegelhalter, it is proven that around TEN percent of the population likes the same sex. In a group of ten women (The four girls, their moms, and the lesbian couple) such as there was in the book, the odds that FOUR of them like the same sex is unbelievable. I could maybe believe one or two LGBTQ+ but this is just another example of how Rachael Allen tried to cram as much diversity in this book as she could, which made the story feel unrealistic.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    Solid read! I was worried I wasn't going to like it due to the slow beginning, and mixing up the characters a bit, but once I hit a certain part, I didn't want to put it down! 😍 The girls are so diverse and wonderful. Amelia Grace: A Christian girl whose also queer and trying to find her way in this world. Ellie: Muslim and Indian, but also white passing unlike her mom and brother who struggle with both aspects of that. Also, is so hard on herself with making friends. Skylar: Loves softball so much Solid read! I was worried I wasn't going to like it due to the slow beginning, and mixing up the characters a bit, but once I hit a certain part, I didn't want to put it down! 😍 The girls are so diverse and wonderful. Amelia Grace: A Christian girl whose also queer and trying to find her way in this world. Ellie: Muslim and Indian, but also white passing unlike her mom and brother who struggle with both aspects of that. Also, is so hard on herself with making friends. Skylar: Loves softball so much, but has arthritis in her hands. Trying to figure her life and her pain out. Scarlett: A very stern, and hard to get to know girl. Self-harmer. Has severe anxiety and other mental health problems. Totally sweet inside. I didn't think these girls would get together as well as they did due to their differences but this book melted my heart! Reminded me of Morgan Matson. Highly recommend this book! Gifted ARC for a honest review ⭐

  14. 5 out of 5

    Vee_Bookish // stan shea couleé

    HAPPY RELEASE DAY This one sounds really, really fun. --------------------------------- Never mind the Hogwarts letter I need a g damned time turner to read all these amazing books

  15. 5 out of 5

    Brittany

    Super cute, fun read perfect for a lazy summer weekend. I had a hard time separating the voices of the four girls, but I loved how friendship was the center focus and enjoyed their company.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Emily (emilykatereads)

    it's gonna be gAY

  17. 5 out of 5

    Olivia

    See my full review here: https://www.yabookscentral.com/yafict... THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBILITIES is a YA contemporary about friendship in the vein of THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS. This book follows four girls who have known each other all their lives but are being pulled together once again by their mothers, who are BFFs. Skyler and Scarlett are twins who are each dealing with their own problems. Skyler has juvenile arthritis, which has kept her from softball, a sport she loves. She knows See my full review here: https://www.yabookscentral.com/yafict... THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBILITIES is a YA contemporary about friendship in the vein of THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS. This book follows four girls who have known each other all their lives but are being pulled together once again by their mothers, who are BFFs. Skyler and Scarlett are twins who are each dealing with their own problems. Skyler has juvenile arthritis, which has kept her from softball, a sport she loves. She knows she needs a new treatment, but she cannot bring it up with her parents because her father's infidelity just sparked this summer trip. Scarlett has anxiety, which is currently being treated, but she still bears the scars from cutting and she worries that others will find her damaged. Her awful boyfriend feeds into these fears, while also pressuring her to have sex and proclaiming himself to be a good boy/nice guy (you figure out very quickly that he is not). Amelia Grace and her mother live under the patriarchal/misogynistic thumb of her stepfather and his church. After an unfortunate coming out in front of the congregation, Amelia Grace has been ostracized until she can go back in the closet. She feels torn between religion and being true to herself. She is also in love with one of the other girls she will be staying with for the summer. Ellie is dealing with cyber bullying and is desperate to make some real friends. She is excited for this summer and hopes to make the other girls into her BFFs by the end. When they find an old charter for a Southern Belle Drinking Club, Ellie latches onto the idea, and they all decide to accomplish something impossible for the summer. What I loved: This has a big feeling of sisterhood and camaraderie that I really enjoyed. The girls each really come to life throughout the book. I also liked the juxtaposition of churches in that religion and sexual orientation do not always have to be at odds. The book is overall positive and about living and loving and sharing everything with your friends. What left me wanting more: A lot of issues are treated at a very superficial/surface level. It may be because we are following so many characters (the four girls and their mothers), but I think I would have cut down on the character drama (every single one had something big) and focused in on a few key storylines so that we could go a little deeper and explore more. Final verdict: Overall, this YA contemporary fiction is a celebration of friendship and the families we create. This is a summer of growth, opportunity, and gained wisdom. Would highly recommend for fans of THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS. Please note that I received an ARC. All opinions are my own.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Brooke Lorren

    Don't you love summer books? The Summer of Impossibilities by Rachael Allen is a lovely book about summer, friendship, and learning to accept yourself for who you are. It revolves around four main characters: Skyler - she suffers from juvenile arthritis, and although she loves playing softball, it's incredibly painful to play. She doesn't want to disappoint her family by telling them her hands hurt. Scarlett - Sky's twin sister, she's not sure about her boyfriend. Amelia Grace - She's interested in Don't you love summer books? The Summer of Impossibilities by Rachael Allen is a lovely book about summer, friendship, and learning to accept yourself for who you are. It revolves around four main characters: Skyler - she suffers from juvenile arthritis, and although she loves playing softball, it's incredibly painful to play. She doesn't want to disappoint her family by telling them her hands hurt. Scarlett - Sky's twin sister, she's not sure about her boyfriend. Amelia Grace - She's interested in girls and also likes church, but when her church finds out that she likes girls, doesn't want her to be a youth pastor anymore. Ellie - She's been homeschooled for most of her life and has trouble making friends. When Skyler and Scarlett's parents are having marriage troubles, the girl's parents take them to a lakeside cabin for the summer and the girls all share a cabin together. They follow in their mothers' footsteps by creating the Southern Belles Drinking Club - which doesn't necessarily involve drinking because Ellie is Moslem and doesn't drink. Together, they make a pact to do something impossible over the summer. The growth and the friendship of these girls is sweet, and this makes a wonderful summer book. I only wish I had friendships like these. In the background of these girl's friendships, their parents are also dealing with things, and their difficulties bleed into the girl's lives--as they can in real life. I loved how the girls dealt with their family amidst their growing independence. Although I enjoyed the book, my biggest problem was that sometimes I had difficulty distinguishing the voices of the various characters, especially at the beginning. I generally was able to tell the different characters apart mostly by what they were dealing with or by flipping back to see what name was at the chapter header, not by their different ways of speaking. But this is a minor issue. I definitely think this is a fun book for teens to read this summer.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Mara (marasfoldedpages)

    Thank you to the publisher for sending me this novel for review! I really really really loved this book. I read the first chapter and was like okay. I read the second chapter and was like oh no that did not just happen. When I read the third chapter I just knew this was going to be a great, hilarious and real story. At first I wasn't sure about four perspectives. But I LOVED EVERY SINGLE ONE. Each girl had their own personality and problems, and I related to each one which made this novel so much Thank you to the publisher for sending me this novel for review! I really really really loved this book. I read the first chapter and was like okay. I read the second chapter and was like oh no that did not just happen. When I read the third chapter I just knew this was going to be a great, hilarious and real story. At first I wasn't sure about four perspectives. But I LOVED EVERY SINGLE ONE. Each girl had their own personality and problems, and I related to each one which made this novel so much more important. There was badassery and girl positivity and hilarious situations that made this book light and serious at the same time. There was a little bit of falling in love and a little bit of heartbreak. There was the building of friendships, new and old, and the Southern Belle Drinking Club. Kinda like the sisterhood of the travelling pants, but so much better. There was amazing LGBT representation. It was effortless and real, and made the story. And religion was a large part of this novel. And also an insight to the competitive side of sports and how it can affect how women view themselves, which I thought was great to include. There was also the truth of eating disorders and self harm. Nothing was graphic, but it was largely discussed. The ending was oh so sweet. Nothing felt forced or rushed and every situation was real. I think that's my favourite thing about this novel. Overall, this novel had so many topics brilliantly discovered over the course of one summer. I love these girls and would totally go for a sequel to this stand alone. 5/5 stars because this is one of the best contemporaries I've ever read.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Teresa

    Thank you Netgalley for this ARC of The Summer of Impossibilities by Rachael Allen. Sisters Scarlett and Skyler are shocked to come home one day to find their mother throwing out all of their father's possessions. He has been cheating on her, and she is taking her two girls to see her best and longest girlfriends in their summer home. Scarlett and Skyler are now going to be spending all summer with their "Aunties" and their aunties own teen daughters. Some of them know each other, some of them do Thank you Netgalley for this ARC of The Summer of Impossibilities by Rachael Allen. Sisters Scarlett and Skyler are shocked to come home one day to find their mother throwing out all of their father's possessions. He has been cheating on her, and she is taking her two girls to see her best and longest girlfriends in their summer home. Scarlett and Skyler are now going to be spending all summer with their "Aunties" and their aunties own teen daughters. Some of them know each other, some of them don't, but all of them are holding in secrets and looking for new friendships and romance. Ok, this book covered a lot of totally legit teen issues. Sexual orientation, romance, health, pain, sex, divorce, emotional abuse, friendship and a need to belong. I appreciated all of that, this is a book that I think I would have really enjoyed as a teen. Having said that, I think it could have been better. A lot of the plight's of the teens felt a bit unbelievable and contrived. The secret club that they formed was silly, and even the in-fighting between the girls was OTT. However, there was nothing overtly wrong with the story, in my opinion, but I think it could have gone deeper.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Karis Rogerson

    (Thank you to the publisher via Netgalley for sending me an e-ARC of the book for review.) 5/5 stars This book was just the joy I needed at exactly a terrible time. It has that essence of YA contemporary that I love so much, that bright joy and fun and dealing with hard topics but ultimately leaving you with hope. It's a four-POV book, and at first it took a bit to figure out the particularities of each MC, especially with two of them being twins whose names start with the same letter — reading fas (Thank you to the publisher via Netgalley for sending me an e-ARC of the book for review.) 5/5 stars This book was just the joy I needed at exactly a terrible time. It has that essence of YA contemporary that I love so much, that bright joy and fun and dealing with hard topics but ultimately leaving you with hope. It's a four-POV book, and at first it took a bit to figure out the particularities of each MC, especially with two of them being twins whose names start with the same letter — reading fast I had a hard time distinguishing between them. By maybe 15% of the way through, though, each POV was crystallized and that made it so pleasant to read and follow these journeys. There was a lot of exploration of hard things in this book (bullying, pain, marital stress, etc), juxtaposed with fun moments like parties on the lake, so many descriptions of food and fun, and great friendship vibes. Overall, would definitely recommend as I think it's a great book that touches on some hard things while remaining overall upbeat and positive, and is skillfully crafted what with those four distinct POVs.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Laura Danks

    From 11 yo: This book is YA but I definitely felt this book is for the older children in that bracket. It contained a lot of adult concepts and language a good dose of sex. This story is about 4 girls who have to spend the summer together at a lake house. They soon find the remains of a secret club that was there so they decide to remake it. An unlikely friendship comes between the girls and after lots of ups and downs, anger and happiness, they all bond for life. I thought this book was interesti From 11 yo: This book is YA but I definitely felt this book is for the older children in that bracket. It contained a lot of adult concepts and language a good dose of sex. This story is about 4 girls who have to spend the summer together at a lake house. They soon find the remains of a secret club that was there so they decide to remake it. An unlikely friendship comes between the girls and after lots of ups and downs, anger and happiness, they all bond for life. I thought this book was interesting and explore friendship. I loved the character of Ames (Amelia Grace) the most because of her personality and how much she loves Scarlet. I also like how she disagrees with some aspects of religion even if she is extremely religious. I think each character had some good and bad traits that make them feel human.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    This story told in the voices of four teen girls explores the trials of finding your identity in the face of shifting family dynamics, questions of social and sexual identity, and discovering one's own integrity. As an adult reader, I was able to feel both the parental and adolescent angst, but this book is approachable for readers on both sides of forty. The characters in this book are believable and likable, even in their flaws. The challenges are true to contemporary experience and push the r This story told in the voices of four teen girls explores the trials of finding your identity in the face of shifting family dynamics, questions of social and sexual identity, and discovering one's own integrity. As an adult reader, I was able to feel both the parental and adolescent angst, but this book is approachable for readers on both sides of forty. The characters in this book are believable and likable, even in their flaws. The challenges are true to contemporary experience and push the reader to understand what it would be to be "other" in some way. This book was received as a digital ARC through NetGalley in return for a fair and honest review.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sagarika

    This book contains several topics worth discussing, and I found it a good balance of heavier subjects against a backdrop of developing friendships, sisterhood, summertime, and summer romances. I did feel like the number of issues being discussed hindered a fully fleshed out treatment of each of the heavy themes, but I did appreciate the author's effort to fold diverse representation into her characters (the MCs are Jewish, bi, lesbian, biracial Indian-American/Muslim, battling juvenile arthritis This book contains several topics worth discussing, and I found it a good balance of heavier subjects against a backdrop of developing friendships, sisterhood, summertime, and summer romances. I did feel like the number of issues being discussed hindered a fully fleshed out treatment of each of the heavy themes, but I did appreciate the author's effort to fold diverse representation into her characters (the MCs are Jewish, bi, lesbian, biracial Indian-American/Muslim, battling juvenile arthritis) and critical discussions into her story. CW: bullying, emotional abuse, homophobia, past eating disorder, past self-harm.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Wordsborn

    I have very mixed feelings about this one. Kind of, I wasn't the right reader, or maybe I read it at the wrong timing. Still, I enjoyed this book more than I was expecting. The premise of the book made me go for it, but after starting it, it felt like a NO for me. But after I finished it, I felt like it was worth it. One thing I highly appreciate about this book is the dynamic and character development. I liked how each of the characters was distinct their own way. The writing style was somethin I have very mixed feelings about this one. Kind of, I wasn't the right reader, or maybe I read it at the wrong timing. Still, I enjoyed this book more than I was expecting. The premise of the book made me go for it, but after starting it, it felt like a NO for me. But after I finished it, I felt like it was worth it. One thing I highly appreciate about this book is the dynamic and character development. I liked how each of the characters was distinct their own way. The writing style was something entirely new to me and I liked it for that too. Overall, I think it is a good book to read on a hot summer day.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    This story told in the voices of four teen girls explores the trials of finding your identity in the face of shifting family dynamics, questions of social and sexual identity, and discovering one's own integrity. As an adult reader, I was able to feel both the parental and adolescent angst, but this book is approachable for readers on both sides of forty. The characters in this book are believable and likable, even in their flaws. The challenges are true to contemporary experience and push the r This story told in the voices of four teen girls explores the trials of finding your identity in the face of shifting family dynamics, questions of social and sexual identity, and discovering one's own integrity. As an adult reader, I was able to feel both the parental and adolescent angst, but this book is approachable for readers on both sides of forty. The characters in this book are believable and likable, even in their flaws. The challenges are true to contemporary experience and push the reader to understand what it would be to be "other" in some way.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lauren R.

    3.5 stars. I’m feeling a bit mixed on this one, to be honest! I usually love her writing and think it does a good job of capturing real teenagers. Maybe there were just too many things going on with each character in this book but I struggled to keep everyone straight in my head, and a lot of the time they didn’t feel like real teenagers to me? I really liked all of the friendship feels and that was the main point of the book, but some of the elements in the plot summary were barely involved so 3.5 stars. I’m feeling a bit mixed on this one, to be honest! I usually love her writing and think it does a good job of capturing real teenagers. Maybe there were just too many things going on with each character in this book but I struggled to keep everyone straight in my head, and a lot of the time they didn’t feel like real teenagers to me? I really liked all of the friendship feels and that was the main point of the book, but some of the elements in the plot summary were barely involved so why bother? Idk. I read it quickly and it was mostly enjoyable!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Alissa

    Didn't particularly love it, didn't particularly hate it. It was just "meh" and blended seamlessly with all the other books (and movies) with plots along the same lines. Four girls, particularly strangers in the beginning, tossed together for the summer. Adjustment is difficult. Drama ensues. But eventually, by summer's end, they become Friends and all learned Important Lessons about Life and Friendship. Credits roll. End story. Wrapped up all neat and tidy and tied with a shiny ribbon. Entertai Didn't particularly love it, didn't particularly hate it. It was just "meh" and blended seamlessly with all the other books (and movies) with plots along the same lines. Four girls, particularly strangers in the beginning, tossed together for the summer. Adjustment is difficult. Drama ensues. But eventually, by summer's end, they become Friends and all learned Important Lessons about Life and Friendship. Credits roll. End story. Wrapped up all neat and tidy and tied with a shiny ribbon. Entertaining, but not particularly memorable.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Dontreadlikethem

    An ideal YA book for a group of friends to read together. Four seemingly different girls grouped by their mothers must spend a summer in the same cabin. The chapters hop from girl to girl so there are no true secrets from the reader only from the characters. A coming of age story that will hit home with more then one kind of young woman due to the insight of multiple personalities and situations. Children ages 14 and up.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Isabelle

    Esse livro é o famoso livro de amigos, casa de praia e romances de verão. “Sometimes people are more than friends. They become your family. They help you understand that life doesn’t have to be the thing that you thought. They pull back the curtain on a world you didn’t know existed. They make you reach for the impossible. Maybe that’s all of our mission in life. To find the people who can show you there’s another way of living.”

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