"This was supposed to be my best summer yet, the one I've been working toward since practically forever. Now I'm being banished from everything I know and love, and it just doesn't make any sense."
Having recently discarded her dorky imageand the best friend that went with itColby Cavendish is looking forward to a long hot season of parties, beach BBQ's, and hopefully, more hook-ups with Levi Bonham, the hottest guy in school. But her world comes crashing down when her parents send her away to spend the summer in Greece with her "crazy" aunt Tally.
Stranded on a boring island with no malls, no cell phone reception, and an aunt who talks to her plants, Colby finds herself worrying that her new friends have forgotten all about her. But when she meets Yannis, a cute Greek local, everything changes. She experiences something deeper and more intense than a summer fling, and it forces her to see herself, and the life she left behind, in a whole new way...
One summer changes everything in this poignant young adult novel about best friends, popularity, and an unforgettable summer romance.
"The protagonist's venting and observations are alternately whiny, wistful, strident, and hilarious. Despite typical teen self-obsession, Colby is likable and ultimately well intentioned. As she deals with her feelings, she blunders her way rather charmingly into a new maturity."
School Library Journal
"Alyson Noël ROCKS at creating the angst and voice of teenage girls, and
Colby Cavendish, the main character of Cruel Summer is a witty, thoughtful
chick to spend the summer with. Cruel Summer is a great readbetter than
my fave books from Noël, Kiss & Blog and Saving Zoë."
"Though Cruel Summer addresses the usual sort of teen angst, it stands out
from its peers for both its unusual Greek island setting, and for the
honesty and vulnerability of Colby's blog and journal entries. It makes for
an absorbing read."
Hilary Williamson, Book Loons
"Noël convincingly captures Colby's self-transformation as the character
comes full circle and realizes that perhaps instead of fighting life and all
the things out of her control, she should let go and embrace them. Through
the typing fingers of Colby Cavendish, Noël teaches her readers that all the
years of suffering through teenage awkwardness are just a phase and, in the
end, if a person allows it, she can learn more about herself than she ever
Kristine MedeirosCIUDAD magazine
" ...Teen girls will totally love Cruel Summer by Alyson Noël. The story
is told using letters home, the journal her mother gave her, "Colby's
Journal For Desperate Times...," and her new blog. The range of emotions,
devastating lows to breathtaking highs, and the intense feeling that
everything affects her is so authentic. The reader will relate to her habit
of over-thinking every comment, gesture, or word of an email, and the
insecurity she feels around Yannis. I loved this book and totally devoured
it. For this reason, I give it five stars!"
Cana Rensberger, TeensReadToo
"Just finished this book, and absolutely loved it. Despite this being
Alyson's 5th or 6th book, this is my first Alyson Noël book. And I am
looking forward to reading more. Colby is lovable and humorous in her
telling of her life on Tinos through journal entries, letters, postcards,
and blog entries. Told in this particular way, the book becomes a quick,
absorbing read and very summery. I also loved Noël's way of dealing with
Colby's parent's divorce and her emotions about itthey were very
realistic. As the summer winds to a close, put this book on the top of your
reading pile. It's a perfect way to end the summer."
"I really enjoyed reading Cruel Summer by Alyson Noël. It was a very unique book filled with love, hate, adventure, and many unforgettable opportunities and experiences. I thought it was cool how the author wrote the book like it was partly a blog, a regular story, and a diary...Overall, Cruel Summer was a great novel that I definitely recommend to teenage girls looking for a little summer romance."
"The lovely descriptions of beaches and the beauty of Greece will make
readers want to get plane tickets over there. Alyson Noël, author of Kiss & Blog and Saving Zoë, does a great job in all her books of showing the fallout and hope that can come after what seems like devastating mistakes. Colby is a mess at first, and readers will feel like yelling at her for some of her choices, even while wanting to comfort her. But who wouldn't like to rewind the clock sometimes? Not everyone has a chance to go to a beautiful island in Greece to get perspective, but anyone can try to start
Amy Alessio, TeensRead.com
St. Martin's Griffin, (May 2008), ISBN: 9780312355111