Review: The Boys of Summer by CJ Duggan

March 11, 2013
Title: The Boys of Summer
Author: CJ Duggan
Published: Self | Dec 11, 2012
Genre: I felt it was more Chick-lit, NA
Series: Summer
The Boys of Summer
An Endless Summer

Goodreads | Amazon
It seemed only natural to nickname them the ‘Onslow Boys’. Every time they swaggered in the front door of the Onslow Hotel after a hard week’s work, their laughter was loud and genuine as they settled onto their bar stools. I peeked through the restaurant partition, a flimsy divider between my world and theirs. I couldn’t help but smile whenever I saw them, saw him ... Toby Morrison.

Quiet seventeen-year-old Tess doesn’t relish the thought of a summertime job. She wants nothing more than to forget the past haunts of high school and have fun with her best friends before the dreaded Year Twelve begins.

To Tess, summer is when everything happens: riding bikes down to the lake, watching the fireworks at the Onslow Show and water bomb fights at the sweltering Sunday markets.

How did she let her friends talk her into working?

After first-shift disasters, rude, wealthy tourists and a taunting ex-boyfriend, Tess is convinced nothing good can come of working her summer away. However, Tess finds unlikely allies in a group of locals dubbed ‘The Onslow Boys’, who are old enough to drive cars, drink beer and not worry about curfews. Tess’s summer of working expands her world with a series of first times with new friends, forbidden love and heartbreaking chaos.

All with the one boy she has never been able to forget.

It will be a summer she will always remember.

Warning: sexual references, and occasional coarse language.


     Bad news guys. But before you start yelling at me for not liking this book, let me say something. The Boys of Summer is the perfect beachy summery read for a younger teen but not the one for me. Do you know the feeling when you read a book and it just seems wrong even if it's the best book out there? Something doesn't click and The Boys of Summer was that book for me. I didn't connect with any characters, and on top of that, I felt very old reading this story and that's not something I enjoy feeling.

     Tess is a high school sophomore who started working at the Onslaw Hotels for summer with her best friends Ellie and Adam. There she meets the Onslaw boys aka the hottest guys in Onlaw including one of her crush, Toby. Tess was pretty much a normal teenage girl who hasn't dated much and is shy of her feelings. What I didn't like about her was that she misunderstood situations or words too easily and at times I felt like she was literately dumb. The guy is clearly giving her hints but she just doesn't get it and after few pages I got bored with that. As for Toby, I don't even know him. The whole story was on the surface, it never got deep but I think that's what it was suppose to be because it's a light, summer read. See, I feel like it's-me-not-you thing, I'm just not suited for light reads. I want strong, powerful, makes-me-swoon romance, which clearly wasn't here.

     The story did capture the summer theme. There were boat rides, tanning, colorful clothes, flirting boys, dating rumors, and lots of blushing. So all in all it might be a cute read for someone and don't let my review discourage you from giving it a try. The Boys of Summer was something different than I expected and I really liked the fact that there was an aussie slang to the writing. I did learn a lot of new words but importantly I was surprised by the fact that this book was set in the 1990's and the time period didn't even affect the story. It's really impressive when authors can pull that off. Oh and Adam was one of my favorite characters ever, I loved his teasing and overly enthusiastic emails. I really wish he gets a book, until then I'm looking forward for Sean's book. Why? Because he plays football and players are hot!

A Copy was provided by the Author for an honest review. (Thanks You!)


  1. We can't all like every story. I think I might try this one in the summertime if I do read it. And doesn't the girl on the cover look like Katherine Heigel lol. Nice honest review!

    1. She does look like her! I didn't even notice that but that cover is gorgeous. I didn't have anything negative to say, this is more like a positive 2.5 stars review. You should totally give it a try.

  2. Aha- now all I see is Katherine Heigel ! :P

    I've seen this book around, but after reading your review I don't think this one's for me. Like you, I'm more into the deep, swoon-filled novels that are layered with thousands of emotions! If i'm ever looking for a light read though, I might give it a shot :) Great review!

    1. I love me some deep angsty romance too! Some books are just meant to be read when you are in the mood and this is one of those.

  3. I've had some "it's not you, it's me" moments recently too. I'm sorry that this didn't work for you, and I hope that the next book you read is fabulous. Tess does sound really normal, but I'm not sure that I'll like this one either-- heavy romance is my favorite too! ;) Fabulous review, Aman!

    Megan@The Book Babe

    1. I hate those moments and I really feel bad for the book when that happens. But like Harley said, every book is not going to be my favorite.

  4. Oh I so hate it when it happens to me too! I don't know if I'm just over light teen reads or what but nowadays I just tend to gravitate towards dark disturbing reads. I feel NA and adult books are more intense. I'm definitely skipping this book.

    Janhvi @ The Readdicts

    1. Same here! I want to read dark, gritty, angsty reads and I agree Na is my favorite right now too.

  5. Oh it's a shame that you didn't enjoy this Aman, but I get why a lot of it didn't work for you. I think I was in the mood for something light and funny at the time and so that's why it worked so well for me. I can't wait to get my hands on An Endless Summer, here's hoping that we both really enjoy it! :)

    1. I was so looking forward for this one but maybe it wasn't the right time but I loved sean and I really hope his will be better.

  6. It made me feel old too! I liked it how it reminded me of the summer when I turned 18 and when I realized how many years ago that was...drat. Seems like many more than it actually is ;)
    Sorry you didn't really connect with this book, but I totally see why that is so. The characters weren't exactly my favorite part either.

    1. I felt old in the way that the story was very childish for me and I'm more of a winter person. lol This book was completely opposite of me but I'm glad you enjoyed it :)


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