Review: Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson

Posted August 2, 2015 by valeranne in Reviews / 2 Comments

Review: Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson

Second Chance Summer

by Morgan Matson
Published on June 7th, 2012
by Simon & Schuster UK
Genres: Contemporary, Family, Friendship, Romance, Young Adult
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
Amazon | B&N | BookDepository | Goodreads

Also by this author: Amy & Roger's Epic Detour, Since You've Been Gone

Taylor Edwards family might not be that close - everyone is a little too busy and overscheduled, but for the most part, they get along just fine. Then Taylor's dad gets some devastating news, and her parents decide that the family will spend one last summer together at their old lake house in the Pocono Mountains.

5 Stars

What? More Morgan Maton awesomeness? Yep. You’re welcome.

I have officially completed my second book in my MoMa Reread and I couldn’t be happier. I actually enjoyed this more this time around. Still cried which I told myself that I wasn’t going to do but you win some, you lose some.

Taylor Edwards has consistently chosen flight over fight for years now, but she finds out that she will have to face the mess her flight has made. The story opens with Taylor attempting the great escape before her family heads to their lake house that they haven’t been to in five years.The reason that they’re heading up there after all this time is to spend their last summer together as a family before her father’s cancer likely  overtakes him. It’s an extrememly difficult time for the family and they all want to reconnect during their last summer as a unit. The only hitch is that Taylor returns to a whole lot of hostility; turns out, the more time you leave a mess, the worse it gets.

Before I get into that, we’ll talk about family; Taylor’s family is not close at all. She’s close with her father but the rest of the family orbits around one another; it reminded me so much of Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour (Amy and Roger have a cameo in this!) in that aspect. It really is a coming-of-age story; Taylor has to confront her feelings with her father’s cancer, her past, and her mistakes while also trying to grow up. I really appreciated the family aspect in this book because it was beautiful to see them all come together and grieve in different ways. I think the reason that Taylor always ran away was so she could be alone but she was living alone in her family as well. To see her confront her past and to bond with her family, it was really wonderful.

On top of her family, she left a pretty huge pile of dung with Henry Crosby and Lucy Marino. Lucy was her childhood best friend and Henry was her first boyfriend, both whom she hasn’t talked to in five years. We all make mistakes and it was humbling to see her have to face her mistakes, literally. She came face-to-face with the pain that she caused and she has to deal with the aftereffects all these years later. I respected Taylor for not cowering, she stood up in the face of what she did wrong and tried to right it.

The romance was sweet but not the best. Henry could be pretty swoony when he wanted to be though. It was sweet but it’s not a romance I’m going to turn to when I need a swoony fix.

I reread my original review and I will just leave you with this: Being brave means staying even when it’s hard.


About Morgan Matson

Morgan Matson grew up in New York City and Greenwich, Connecticut. She attended Occidental College in Los Angeles but halfway though a theater degree, she started working in the children’s department of Vroman’s Bookstore and fell in love with YA literature.

Following college graduation (and the proud bearer of an incredibly useful theater/English degree) she moved back East to attend the New School, where she received her M.F.A in Writing for Children.

Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour, inspired by Morgan’s three cross-country road trips, was published in May 2010. It was named an ALA Top Ten Best Book, a PW “Flying Start” book, and was shortlisted for the Waterstone’s Book Prize.

In the meantime, Morgan moved back to California, went back to school again and in 2011 received an M.F.A. in Screenwriting from the University of Southern California.

Her second book, Second Chance Summer, was published in May 2012 and draws largely on her experiences spending summers growing up in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania.

Her third book, Since You’ve Been Gone, was published in 2014.

Morgan currently lives in Los Angeles, though she loves to travel and does it whenever she can. She is currently writing another book, to be published in 2016.

Follow me

Tags: , , ,

Like what you see? Enter your email here to get Quite the Novel Idea directly in your mail box. Great, huh?

Enter your e-mail address below to receive new posts directly in your inbox!

2 responses to “Review: Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson

  1. Liza

    I read Amy & Roger, but I haven’t read any of her other books. I’m not sure why because it seems like everyone (including you!) loves them. Great review Val!

Leave a Reply

(Enter your URL then click here to include a link to one of your blog posts.)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.