A Summer to Die

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Overview

Thirteen-year-old Meg envies her sister Molly's beauty and popularity, and these feelings make it difficult for her to cope with Molly's illness and death. "Not simply another story on a subject currently in vogue, this book is memorable as a well-crafted reaffirmation of universal values." -- Horn Book

Thirteen-year-old Meg envys her sister's beauty and popularity. Her feelings don't make it any easier for her to cope with Molly's ...

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A Summer to Die

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Overview

Thirteen-year-old Meg envies her sister Molly's beauty and popularity, and these feelings make it difficult for her to cope with Molly's illness and death. "Not simply another story on a subject currently in vogue, this book is memorable as a well-crafted reaffirmation of universal values." -- Horn Book

Thirteen-year-old Meg envys her sister's beauty and popularity. Her feelings don't make it any easier for her to cope with Molly's strange illness and eventual death.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Christina M. Desai
This reissue of a 1977 classic deals with themes that are just a relevant today: birth, transition, death, and renewal. Over the past thirty years, children's literature has evolved in many ways. It has become much more open about unpleasant matters such as disease and dysfunctional families. Still, children like Meg, the main character, are not always ready for brutal honesty. In this novel, the seriousness of her sister's illness unfolds by degrees as Meg gradually allows the unthinkable to make its way into her consciousness. Natural surroundings provide mute clues leading her toward gradual understanding. For example, February's barren whiteness, when sky and horizon become indistinguishable, mirrors Meg's confusion and lack of direction. The vacant old house, with blank window-eyes, represents emptiness—and also possibilities for renewal and fulfillment. The novel abounds in these layers of meaning drawn from its New England setting. Were it written today, we would expect some evidence of diversity, but this novel maintains an inward focus on the crisis facing this white, nuclear family. A thirteen year old's first person narrative today would be less polished, more reflective of teen idiom: unlike more contemporary treatments of this topic such as Jenny Downham's acute YA novel Before I Die, there are no ugly moments to confront here. But Meg's articulate account is no less moving for all that. Like her growing acceptance of Molly's imminent death, the novel's impact gradually intensifies toward the climax, but only after healing forces are also in place and Meg is ready to accept them. The novel is a keenly sensitive look at the death of a sibling, especiallyappropriate for the younger "young adult." Reviewer: Christina M. Desai
From the Publisher
"Not simply another story on a subject currently in vogue, this book is memorable as a well-crafted reaffirmation of universal values." Horn Book

"Not simply another story on a subject currently in vogue, this book is memorable as a well-crafted reaffirmation of universal values." Horn Book Guide

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553243895
  • Publisher: Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 8/28/1999
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Lois Lowry

Lois Lowry is the author of more than thirty books for young adults, including the popular Anastasia Krupnik series. She has received countless honors, among them the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award, the California Young Reader’s Medal, and the Mark Twain Award. She received Newbery Medals for two of her novels, NUMBER THE STARS and THE GIVER. Her first novel, A SUMMER TO DIE, was awarded the International Reading Association’s Children’s Book Award. Ms. Lowry now divides her time between Cambridge and an 1840s farmhouse in Maine. To learn more about Lois Lowry, see her website at www.loislowry.com.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 56 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(39)

4 Star

(12)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 57 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 12, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    This is a must read book...

    I picked this book up at the library a while back because of the cover. I had no clue what it was about. I thought that the title was interesting and I began to read it. I found this book to be both enjoyable and depresing. This novel is about a family of four. The father is a writer and professor. He has a wife named Lydia and two daughters, Molly and Meg. Both, he and his wife decide to rent a house in the country, so that Dr.Chalmers (the father), can complete the book that he is in the process of writing. They rent a house from a man named Will. He is a free spirited 70 year old man. Both he and Meg share a passion for photography. Meg becomes friends with Will and meets his new renters across the field. Ben and Maria are a couple with a child on the way. Of course Molly loves this, because her dream in life is to get married and to have a child. Molly can not wait for the child to be born and be able to see it, but Molly become very sick and is hospitalized. Will Molly be out in time for the birth of Ben and Maria's child? What will Molly's fate be?

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2008

    A summer to die

    When I first saw this book in the library, I had thought it would be a good tragedy book that would take a while for me to read. Turns out that the book was not what I expected it to be, because Meg and Molly are both sisters and are not alike, at all! Meg is very jealous of molly until she finds out her sister is going to die. The family goes up-side down and everything is a wreck. I liked this book for many reasons: it had a great mortal, it was a great, flowing, and easy to read book. Its a book everyone should love to read!!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2012

    Amelia

    Best book ever.. sad and heartbreacking....funny also

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2011

    .......

    This book us one of the sadest books I've read but one of the greatest!! This book had a few mistakes but other than that it was a very good book! Its worth the ten dollars for sure!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2011

    Anonymous

    Amazing book!!!! Loved it:)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2009

    I loved this book!!!!!!!!!!!

    The first time i read it i was 8 years old and i couldn't put it down!!!!!!!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2008

    Sweet and Honest

    Although short, this story kept my attention for quite a while. After I finished reading it I immediately wanted to experience it again. The characters are so personable and blunt, the narrating clear and thoughtful-something you don't often find-and Lowry always impresses me.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2008

    a book reader

    ths book is very recommended and everyone should read it it made me cry when her sister died.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2007

    A Summer to Die

    A Summer to Die, by Lois Lowry, was not an outstanding book, but also not a bad one. The novel was OK and had a deep meaning of fraternical relationships and when one dies, but the author did not bring it out with strength. It was an OK and also forgettable story.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 12, 2002

    THIS WAS A GOOD BOOK

    I like that book. It was sad when Meg's sister was diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia, a boold- cell cancer. It was a story about a 13 years old girl and her sister, Molly's illness and death. I feel too quiet when I read the part, 'Two weeks later she was gone. She just close her eyes one afternoon and didn't ever open them again.' It reminds me of someone who I know died in last year in the month of March.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2001

    Not So Happy

    I hated that book! It was so disturbing and I felt that it didn't discribe a thing, I read it for Spanish class in Spanish and it was awful I would like to read it in english and find out what you people are ranting and raving about

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2012

    One of my favorites!

    The first time i saw this book i thouht it was just going to be some sad story. Don't get me wrong, this story is sad, but it's so much more. I've probably read this book more times than any other book and each time i read it i love it just as much as the first time i read it. This is by far one of my favorite books and i highly recomend you read it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2012

    a bittersweet read

    A Summer to Die is a perfect book for both preteens and adults. The novel touches on sibling rivalry, friendship, identity, and as the title would suggest, death. Despite its age, the book still holds up today.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 17, 2012

    Touching.

    A Summer to Die is a great book. It is a real page turner, you won't want to put it down. I read it for lit and it was a heartfelt tear jerking book. Deffinately worth the time.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2012

    Very sad

    This is a very sad book. It was also very descriptive when the birth scene came. What kind of name is happy for a baby boy? I read this book in 30 min. Just get it at the library dont pay your good money for a short book like this!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 19, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Amazing to see this again.

    How crazy is it...find after all these years? I remember this book like it was yesterday. A good friend, suggested it to me back in Jr.high school. I never thought I would see it again after all those years.

    Great book. Great Story line. A must read for any teenage girl...one with a older sister.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 3, 2011

    I recommend this book

    I remember reading this book when I was either 11 or 12 years old. It had a lasting impression on me particularly now as I am an adult. Because I have been suffering with nosebleeds, for some reason, this book came back to my mind after all of these years. A really GOOD BOOK. Although I remember feeling sad after I read it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2006

    Fantastic Book to read!!

    I loved reading this book because it had suspenese, love, and of course genuine sister-love. I was sad when Molly got sick, and really happy when the baby was born. I would reccomend this book to ANYONE. I loved this book and so would you. I like the way Lois Lowry writes because she makes you feel like you are the main character in the story. I loved this book

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2006

    The Best Book Ever

    This book was really sad but it is one of the best books I have ever read! You should definately read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2006

    Great book,Emotional too!

    I definitly loved this book.It was very touching and showed how to sisters think they might hate each other but at the end you know you really care about them.I totally recomend this books for preteens and teenagers who want to be popular and have all the boyfriends but in reality it shows you that you should admire everything you've got.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 57 Customer Reviews

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