the last summer of the camperdowns.


It took me longer than one day to get back here – no matter. A review is on it’s way. 

The Last Summer of the Camperdowns by Elizabeth Kelly 

spoiler-free plot synopsis: Riddle James Camperdown (named after Jimmy Hoffa) is growing up on the well-to-do region of Cape Code in the summer of 1972. She is 13. She has red hair. She is looking forward to a summer whose most intense decision involves choosing horseback riding or reading. She lives with her mother, Greer, a semi-famous actress and her father, Camp, who is in the middle of a political run. Riddle’s summer is suddenly turned upside down when she witnesses something extremely disturbing and suspicious take place in her neighbor Gin’s barn. As she learns more about how her & her family’s life are intertwined with her lifetime neighbors, the Devlin’s, she holds on to the secret of what she saw. As the summer beats on, Riddle must decide what her silence is worth and whether her truth can solve the problems it has created. 

what I thought: Let my start by saying, I found this title through a suggestion in an online magazine that I read, called Matchbook Magazine that gives really great book suggestions every month. I’ve been trying to read more recent offerings, which can be difficult when you rely on the library – everyone else wants to do that as well. However, I managed to snag this one pretty early on the request list – huzzah! 

I enjoyed this summer read. Riddle is an awkward kid, I was an awkward kid – we got along well during my read- through. During the book you’re in Riddle’s head and seeing the happenings through her perspective – which I liked, she brings a unique perspective, if not a little simple. Riddle struggles to keep up with her dramatic mother and to impress her manly, war-ravaged father as she attempts to grow into her own person as well. She struggles with infatuation, love, and being 13. I like her. The book itself gets a little thriller-ish towards the end – Riddle’s secret is bigger than you think, and involves more people than I would have guessed at the beginning. The book itself makes for fast reading with the windows open and sunlight all around the apartment. 

favorite quotation: “Good night,” I said, heading up to my room, a queasy feeling overtaking me as I contemplated the dismaying notion that even this rich and powerful and famous man was no match for the wingless insect next door.” 


ashley . 


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