Book Report: Our highly scientific analysis of a book, from the characters to the writing style to the swoon. See More...

Baby Let’s Cruise Away From Here

When her sister Storm dies in a tragic accident, Anna decides to hit the road with Storm's best friend Cameron and complete the summer bucket list that Storm would never get to finish in Someone Else's Summer.

Baby Let’s Cruise Away From Here

BOOK REPORT for Someone Else's Summer by Rachel Bateman

Cover Story: Splish Splash
BFF Charm: Yay
Swoonworthy Scale: 9
Talky Talk: Straight Up: Summer Edition
Bonus Factors: Road Trips, The Boy Next Door, Bucket Lists
Relationship Status: Let's Hit the Road

Cover Story: Splish Splash

Nothing says "summer beach read" like a girl on a literal beach, guys! What gives this cover a pass on being your run-of-the-mill stock photography YA cover is that the photo, along with the Polaroid border and Sharpie script are taken directly from the pages of this book, and were one of my fave things about the story.

The Deal:

Anna grew up in the shadow of her older sister Storm and Storm's best friend Cameron. She tagged along, a third wheel on their adventures, until she found her own path in high school and parted ways with her sister and the boy next door. But when Storm dies in a car accident on graduation night, Cameron seems like the only person who can truly understand Anna's loss. One night, Anna finds a summer bucket list that Storm made before her death and decides to embark on a road trip with Cameron to do all the things her sister will never be able to do. On their journey, Anna and Cameron learn a lot...about Storm, about themselves and about each other.

BFF Charm: Yay

This is one of those stories that feels like the entire book is an isolated incident. It begins with Storm's death and moves almost directly into a road trip, so there were times when I felt like I didn't really KNOW Anna or what she was like outside of this one part of her life. She was a cheerleader, a popular girl, and we were reminded frequently that she was a total babe, albeit one of those annoying ones that never has to wear makeup or blow dry their hair and is very skinny but still eats like a horse. (Not to shame people who are naturally beautiful and skinny and love hamburgers. You're probably great! Just let me be mad about it! It's my problem, not yours!) So while I only got a glimpse of what Anna was like, I still liked her. I liked that she was spontaneous and chill and low maintenance and just generally down for whatever, even if it was something that scared her.

That said, it stressed me the hell out that she was always turning her phone off or not answering texts/phone calls. Like sure, live your life, but that sort of disconnectedness felt unnatural and weird in a teenager.

Swoonworthy Scale: 9

I feel like I probably don't have to tell you how this romance goes down. Two pretty people who have known each other their entire lives embark on a road trip where they stay in tiny hotel rooms that NEVER seem to have twin beds, share once-in-a-lifetime experiences like parasailing, and are bonded through a mutual loss that no one else seems to understand? Yeah, dude, of course some sexy haps go down on this road trip. Like, way sexy. Set the pages ABLAZE sexy. There was nothing surprising or out of the ordinary about the swoon between Anna and Cameron, and to be honest, I've read a lot of books similar to this one that don't really do it for me. But I liked these characters, and I liked their chemistry, and whatever it was, it just worked. Bateman also gets her Girl Scout badge for Safety First. *wink*

Talky Talk: Straight Up: Summer Edition

Someone Else's Summer is the kind of book that I crave during summer months. It's quick, it's easy, it's swoony, it's the kind of book you want to read, frozen cocktail in hand, on a beach somewhere. Bateman captures that careless, exciting feeling of summer freedom and sunshine without ever being cheesy. Plus, it has a combination of all my favorite things! See Bonus Factors below.

Bonus Factor: Road Trips

Specifically, road trips to the beach! Cameron, man after my own heart, skips the interstate exit and chooses to take the windy, tree covered highway. I love a good long drive, music blasting, snacks at the ready. If a cute boy's behind the steering wheel? Even better.

Bonus Factor: The Boy Next Door

I blame the ultimate (and ultimately under-rated) 90s teen film, Drive Me Crazy, for my obsession with the boy next door trope (and the fake boyfriend trope, but that's a different book report). Does anyone ever end up falling in love with the boy next door or is it a total fantasy? I grew up with a boy next door, but now he's one of those people who gets in fights on my Facebook posts and has a profile picture of a bald eagle soaring in front of an American flag, so we are probably not soulmates.

Bonus Factor: Lists

I love lists. I love making lists and I love crossing things off of lists, and sometimes, I'll put something I've already done on a list just so I can feel the exhilaration of marking it off. Any book that has characters working off a list is one I'm probably gonna love. OMG I SHOULD MAKE A LIST OF BOOKS THAT HAVE PEOPLE MAKING LISTS.

Casting Call:

Maika Monroe as Anna

Nick Robinson as Cameron

He may be veering into Taylor Kitsch levels of overcasting, but Nick fits the physical description, and he has that sort of guarded darkness thing going on, as though he's always just lost someone close to him. Also, I love him. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Relationship Status: Let's Hit the Road

Book, let's make a playlist, roll down the windows, and head out on adventures together. You make me feel carefree and brave, and I bet we could get into some real trouble together.

FTC Full Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from Perseus Books, I did not receive money or Girl Scout cookies of any kind (not even the lame cranberry ones) for writing this review. Someone Else's Summer is available now.

Rosemary Hallmark's photo About the Author: Rosemary lives in Little Rock, AR with her cute husband and even cuter dog. At 16, she plucked a copy of Sloppy Firsts off the "New Releases" shelf and hasn't stopped reading YA since. (She's still got a soft spot for the swoony, contemporary stuff.) A former magazine editor, she is now a freelance writer, graphic designer, art director and photo stylist. The rest of her time is spent drinking cocktails, renovating her house and laughing at her husband's ridiculous Pretty Little Liars theories.
K