Summer Skin by Kirsty Eagar
Published: February 1st 2016
Genres & Keywords: Contemporary, Romance, New Adult
Jess Gordon is out for revenge. Last year the jocks from Knights College tried to shame her best friend. This year she and a hand-picked college girl gang are going to get even.
The lesson: don’t mess with Unity girls.
The target: Blondie, a typical Knights stud, arrogant, cold . . . and smart enough to keep up with Jess.
A neo-riot grrl with a penchant for fanning the flames meets a rugby-playing sexist pig – sworn enemies or two people who happen to find each other when they’re at their most vulnerable?
It’s all Girl meets Boy, Girl steals from Boy, seduces Boy, ties Boy to a chair and burns Boy’s stuff. Just your typical love story.
A searingly honest and achingly funny story about love and sex amid the hotbed of university colleges by the award-winning author of Raw Blue.
“No one wounds me with impunity.”
Well. This was different. Good different. This isn’t one of those backhanded differents where you’re over someone house and they ask you how their quinoa, zucchini, onion-stuffed pumpkin entree is and you’re just there like “uhh, it’s um–” *attempts to choke it down* “–it’s different”. *spits food into napkin and hides it into purse*
((just to finish the story– ‘someone’s house’ was actually parent’s house. quinoa-stuffed concoction not as bad as sounds))
. . . acting like he couldn’t see Jess, tucked under Blondie’s arm. He probably thought he was being subtle. And Blondie played right along: widening his stance as if experiencing a sudden and significant surge in ball size, speaking in the drawl used by guys who are fluent in Brah.
The feeling I got after reading this book was the same one I felt when I finished watching Boyhood. That’s not say that the storylines are similar, because they aren’t. But Boyhood gave me the sense that I was watching life; ups, downs, mistakes, uncertainties. That’s how Summer Skin made me feel. Like I was reading about life. Or at least a part of it.
“It’s like we meant nothing to them,” Jess said, hooking her friends through the wire mesh of the fence and sagging despondently. “Who’s going to ogle us now?”
“I feel used,” Farren agreed. “Cast aside for some honcho from head office. And now I’m not being objectified, my sense of self is suffering. I’ll have to get back on Facebook.”
For having quite a heavy subject matter, this book was surprisingly not depressing. The humor was great and kept things from getting dark. And any book that faithfully portrays feminism is already in my good graces. Summer Skin shows that it isn’t easy voicing thoughts that you’d think would be common sense. You’re constantly learning what it means to be a feminist and it’s not easy and it’s not always black and white.
“Jess nodded, dry mouthed. “Are you okay?” she rasped.
Mitch shook his head. “Not without you.” He took a breath. “Jess?”
I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to hear the next five words that come out of his mouth.
The romance aspect of Summer Skin is exactly what I was looking for. Kirsty Eagar must have been like, “I’m going to make them hate this character . . . and then I’m going to make them love him”. Which is exactly what she did. I was pretty dead-set on not liking Mitch. He comes off as a mega douche, the very embodiment of what rubs me the wrong way. And yet . . .
However, despite really enjoying this book, there were a few things I wish would’ve been more developed. Particularly, the side characters. Jess had an amazing set of friends and I really would’ve liked to see more. Not that they weren’t present, but I felt like I was just watching their friendship instead of feeling it, youknowwhatimean? Also, there were a few moments when I felt that things were going over my head. Something would happen and it was so ambiguously written that I was just there like, did something happen?? It was like listening in on a conversation that had already started. I could kinda guess what had happened but at the same time I felt like I had read over something.
All in all, this was a great feminist romance. Lots of humor, lots of angst, lots of good things to say about it.
((f.d: the visuals above were edited by myself– base images found on google))