Fans of Jennifer E. Smith and Jenny Han will fall in love with this heartfelt and humor-laced debut following one zodiac-obsessed teen as she struggles to find the guy of her cosmic dreams.
As the daughter of an expert astrologer, Wilamena Carlisle knows that truth lies within the stars. So when she discovers a planetary alignment that won’t repeat for a decade, she’s forced to tackle her greatest astrological fear: The Fifth House—relationships and love. But Wil must decide whether to trust her heart or her chart when she falls for a sensitive guitar player whose zodiac sign points to cosmic disaster.
If Wil’s fate is truly written in the stars, then this summer is about to go supernova. . . .
RITA Finalist for “Best First Book” and “Young Adult Romance”
“This sweet summer romance will have you flipping the pages all night long!” —Bustle
“Astrology lovers and YA fans alike will adore this entertaining read.” —RT Book Reviews
One of “The 10 Best New Young Adult Books in May 2016” —Paste Magazine
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
Be humble for you are made of earth.
Be noble for you are made of stars.
Two fears have plagued me from the time I was little, and today I must face one of them.
It’s not the clowns. A lot of kids get squeamish around clowns, I know. But no one else at Jessica Bernard’s seventh birthday party screamed bloody murder and wet their pants at the sight of one. That’s when I earned the nickname Wila-pee-na. The nickname is quasi-forgotten--thank heavens. Though the fear of clowns is not.
Still, what I’m about to tackle is worse. Way worse.
Carefully I take my place at the top of the water tower, letting my bare legs dangle. The early summer breeze rushes to greet them. One hundred and twenty feet stretch between me and the ground. My pulse doesn’t even flicker. I wish it did. Because heights are a perfectly reasonable fear.
Beneath and around me, the water tower spikes like a bulbous-headed nail from an otherwise tidy landscape. The aging white reservoir once proudly proclaimed CITY OF CARLISLE. But since most everyone, except me and the elements, has forgotten the old tower, it now reads: ITY OF CARL.
I adjust the wrinkled towel underneath me since the metal of the six-foot-wide circular platform is equal parts rust and chipped paint. It’s not as if I planned on coming here--and certainly not in a dress--but driving by on the way to Hyde Park . . . well, I just had to stop. Because for all the structure’s imperfections, it does manage to get one thing right--the view. From here the world is utterly perfect.
Unfolding the yellowing paper, I smooth it over my lap. My astrological birth chart’s intricate and faded markings offer nothing I haven’t seen a million times. I do it out of habit, because the placement of every planet and its degree is as well-known as the location of the nose on my face.
And there it is: The queen mother of all my fears. The Fifth House.
Much as I’d rather bury myself in the study of astrology and its role in the human experience, I can’t avoid reality any longer. Because the clock is ticking. I have precisely twenty-two days.
Twenty-two days of planetary alignment to find my perfect match. If I don’t, it will take another decade for the stars to produce conditions this ideal. And by age twenty-seven, I could be a whacked-out spinster with eleven cats and a raging case of agoraphobia.
Well, that’s a risk I can’t take. Especially when born with an ill-fated Fifth House that already tipped the scales toward a dysfunctional love life. So help me, if I don’t find my match now, I am staring down the barrel of ten years of falling for the wrong guys. Ten years--or more--of heartache, heartbreak, and widespread astrological malaise.
I have no choice. I must swallow my fear and seize this cosmic opportunity.
Eyes closed, I inhale deeply.
From the moment my mother cast it, I have never deviated from the guiding wisdom of my chart. After all, its importance is as genetically predisposed as the blue color of my eyes. Failing just isn’t an option.
So I set to work. I dig out my notepad, pen, and iPod, slipping the latter in my dress pocket. Popping in my earbuds, I press play, letting the music take me higher. But even the upbeat song isn’t enough. I stand and pace the platform. Movement of body breeds movement of ideas--gospel according to Gram.
I begin my brainstorming by compiling a list of the twelve zodiac signs, placing stars next to Aries, Gemini, Libra, and Sagittarius for their intellectual-mindedness and passion for adventure. I add a couple more stars with question marks to the signs that are possible matches. Scanning the list, I cross off Taurus and Scorpio--too possessive; Leo--too outwardly absorbed; and Cancer--too feely. I don’t mesh with the emotionally upheaved. And then there is Pisces. Absolutely out of the question. Why did I even write it down? I scribble until the word is an unreadable inkblot.
But this measly list doesn’t scratch the surface of the daunting research ahead. I’ll have to consult the astrology books tucked under my bed and, of course, my best friend, Irina.
Irina says she has a surprise for me. Something I’ll find quite valuable in my search. Hmm . . . a surprise from my dear Russian comrade doesn’t exactly lower my blood pressure.
I lean back, resting my elbows on the waist-high railing. Cumulus clouds drift overhead, their undersides ironed and starched. One of my finger waves has come loose and slaps the lens of my cat eyeglasses. I tuck the chin-length wave behind my ear, and lose myself in whirling thoughts of sun signs, decanates, and cusps. How in the world will I narrow my search? Where do I even--
All of a sudden vibrations carry from my feet all the way up my legs. And there’s another noise. Faint at first, but growing louder.
Confused, I yank out an earbud.
“--it! Okay?” a voice bellows from the ground.
I spin around, searching for the source. A guy stares back. The distance between us is too great to make out much more than that. I glance toward the outer part of the platform and spot a second guy racing up the ladder as though he’s being pursued by the hounds of hell and his rump is a beef-flavored chew toy.
A pickle-colored station wagon idles beside Gram’s Buick. The driver’s-side door hangs open.
“Help is coming! Stay where you are!”
Help is . . . coming? Then it occurs to me how this must look from far away--lonely girl at the top of a tower, unresponsive, manically scribbling while leaning over the rail. For the love of zodiac, they probably think I’m writing a suicide note or something! Oh my--
“Hey!” I shout, waving my arms. “No! No! There’s been a mistake!”
“No mistake is that bad! Just . . .” The guy’s head lowers, as if he’s searching the crabgrass-and-dandelion ground cover for wisdom. He then lifts his gaze again, cupping his hands to the sides of his mouth. “Just don’t jump!”
So much for wisdom.
The wind awakens with a violent gust. I try to situate myself in line with the shouter so I’m better heard. “Look, I’m not trying to--” I inhale sharply as my foot catches on the strap of my bag. Stumbling forward, I slam into the rail, folding like a rag doll over the metal piping.
“Ahh!” ground guy yells. “Grant!”
Powerful arms latch around my middle, reeling me away from the edge. We stagger backward. The guy hits the tower’s siding with a resonating bwong!
I topple against him, feeling the punch of his heart at my back. His arms remain shackled around me.
“It’s . . . okay.” The climber’s ragged breath blows the hair at my neck. Heat radiates from his body, carrying the scent of sweat and something clean like dryer sheets. “I’ve . . . I’ve got you. I won’t let you fall. I won’t let you fall.” Despite the insane strength of his arms, the rest of him shakes.
I wriggle in the stranger’s grip. “Let me go!”
His heart continues jackhammering. “Only if you promise to keep away from the edge.”
“Okay, I promise! Now loosen your death grip before you shatter my ribs!”
He immediately drops his arms.
“Thank you.” I heave a breath of relief and turn. His eyes are first to demand my attention. They’re brown. Brown isn’t always memorable, but his are. It’s as though something lights them from within. But maybe it’s just the glow from the setting sun.
“What are you doing up here?” I ask.
“I’m saving you, obviously.” The last bit comes out in a wheeze as his tall frame doubles over to brace his hands on his knees. His back sags with another heavy exhalation.
“Saving me,” I repeat with a bemused smirk. “Which is why you’re the one needing CPR?”
Ignoring my remark, he squints down, pushing the damp hair at his forehead. “Um . . . It’s really high up here.” The guy doesn’t appear to be trembling anymore but remains less than steady. He slides down to a sitting position against the tower.
“Well, yeah. That’s sorta the point.”
The breeze shifts, plastering my vintage yellow dress to my body. Sure, there was a time I felt self-conscious about my curviness. But the hourglass gene wasn’t something I could alter with diet or exercise. It was simply a force of nature--easier to accept than fight.
His face flushes darker and he quickly looks away. “Look, whatever it is, this can’t be the solution. Because if you think jumping off a tower is going to be--”
“I am not a jumper!” I cry. “How many times do I have to tell you guys? Sometimes I come up here to think, to clear my head, not . . . flatten it.” My gaze wanders the vista. I don’t need daylight or twenty-twenty vision to know how Carlisle’s homes and businesses align in static rows. Or how the railroad tracks suture the well-to-do east side to the blue-collar west. There’s the hazy outline of the three smokestacks guarding the south, smokestacks that watch everything with winking, tireless eyes. There is place and purpose to every single thing if you’re high enough to see it.
“Being up here gives me a different perspective, you know? Sometimes it’s all a person needs.” I bend to collect my scattered belongings, shoving my papers into my bag before he can question the scrambled charts and lists of signs.
“Whoa, whoa . . . wait.” His dark brows knit. “You seriously climbed all the way up here just . . . to think?”
He scratches his head; dark hair sticks up every which way. Somehow I get the impression his hair is a serial misbehaver.
“Well, I came to think and for the Milky Way.” I tap the mini telescope in the side pocket of my bag. “I’m referring to the band of stars. Not the candy bar.”
“So I gather.” He gives the ladder a sideways glance and gulps.
“Summer’s the best time for viewing, and up here, it’s easier to see without all the light pollution from the city.” I squint. “Sun should be fully set soon; then it’ll be spectacular. Hey, did you know some Native Americans believed the Milky Way to be a pathway for departed souls? Like a sort of astral skyway they traveled until they found a star to inhabit. And you know what’s even more amazing?”
He shakes his head.
“Some scientists are predicting a supernova will be visible inside the Milky Way within the next fifty years! Can you imagine? Witnessing a star going supernova in our very own galaxy! That moment a star dies, it explodes and emits the most brilliant . . .” My smile collapses when I find him staring like I’ve just declared the moon made of cheese. “Sorry. I, um, didn’t mean to go all tangential on you. I’m Wil, by the way.” I offer my hand. “Wil Carlisle.”
Yes, the same Carlisle our fair Midwestern city is named for. Some quadruple great-uncle or other founded it back in 1847. Which is reason enough for Gram to live and die here.
He rises before taking my hand in his. “You’re kind of an unusual girl. No offense, Wil.”
I grin. “Yeah, well, I tried ordinary once and got bored.”
“I’m Grant, Grant Walker. And somehow”--he gives his head a small shake--“that doesn’t shock me.” When he finally smiles, it is for real. It shows in his eyes and where his skin touches mine.
My pulse unexpectedly flutters. “So, Grant Walker”--I pull back my hand, wiping my palm down my dress--“mind calling your friend off suicide watch? As you can see, I’m pretty intent on living.” I notice four lines of orangey-brown where the metal rail has left marks across my midsection. I look like a grilled banana. Awesome. I brush at the unmoving lines.
“Yeah, about that. Unfortunately, I think it might be--”
Wee ooh, wee ooh, wee ooh.
The distant wail draws nearer. I jerk my head up.
“Too late,” he finishes with a grimace.
Several police cars and a fire truck barrel down the side road, red lights whirling, sirens screaming. Rocks spray, ricocheting off the base of the tower as the truck screeches to a halt. I watch in horror as firemen and emergency personnel spill from their vehicles. They’re barking orders while unfurling a large trampoline that bears a striking resemblance to the Japanese flag.
This. Can’t. Be. Happening.
A nasally voice projects over a loudspeaker. “Wah-wah, wah-wah-wah. Waaaahhh!”
I can’t make heads or tails of what’s being said because the guy is smothering the mic with his mouth. I’ll assume he’s telling me not to jump.
I bury my face in my hands, sending my glasses askew. All I wanted was a little peace and perspective. Instead, I get a circus. My only consolation is there aren’t any clowns.
Stars in heaven, Gram will kill me. Kill me. I’ve gotten myself in some pretty bizarre twists, but this one’s a cake-topper.
“Damn!” Grant rakes his hand through his hair. His expression offers the apology his mouth doesn’t deliver. Giving his hair a rest, he asks, “So what do we do now?”
I shake my head and blow out a breath. “Now we go down there and explain what a huge misunderstanding this was. Is.”
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book is fabulous from the start to the finish. You will fall in love with smart and sassy Will. A girl like many of us looking for love in all the wrong places. Her zany commitment to astrology, her love of family and oddball friendships are completely irresistible. Witty Woods is a natural modern storyteller blending fresh humor, family values and romance that all connect. Couldn't put it down.
Really good story with likeable characters. The relationships felt real and it was easy to lose myself in Wil's story.
I've been stuck in a 'like, but didn't love' rut with most of my recent reads, but I loved SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS. And not just because it contains almost all of my favorite contemporary YA tropes in one perfect package. There's a quirky heroine with an interesting passion--astrology, in this case--and a kickass best friend. There's a (mostly) drama free female friendship, a vivid, funny cast of side characters, a bunch of family secrets, a scorching hot guitarist, a generic Midwestern city that springs to life on the page, and a quest for true love. Sometimes I take issue with female MCs who have some ridiculous hang-up that governs their life and prevents them from finding love, but there was a lot of hidden depth to Wil's relationship with astrology that I wasn't expecting. Her determination to conduct her life in a way that conformed with her star chart wasn't just about respecting her mother's legacy, and that revelation eased a bunch of my frustration with the sometimes ridiculous decisions Wil makes as a result. It didn't hurt, either, that Wil was loyal and fierce and funny, or that this was one of the only books I've read this year that actually made me laugh out loud. Even the story's love triangle didn't bother me because it was so easy to understand why Wil would be torn between two choices--her so-called destiny, and the person her heart really wants. If you, like me, have still been looking for that perfect summer read, look no further. SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS is it.
Ms Woods debut is full of fun and humor and tension. What a great triangle! Well done!
Reading “Summer of Supernovas” was like reading the literary equivalent of the actual character of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Willamena is the main character, a young woman obsessed with astrology and who has lost her mother. The character is written as edgy and artistic, but this character is trying WAY too hard. She’s irritating and immature. The astrology stuff has loose connections but never seems to come together, completely pushing to the side the interesting fact that she is a genius with actual astronomy. As is always the case with an annoying female character, there is a love triangle, leaving us to wonder what is going on in this world. The frustrating part is one of the love interests has so much potential to be a great character and salvage the book on his shoulders alone. Instead, the author leaves us with facts about him that make the reader want more only to never get it. The relationship Willamena has with her grandmother is another goldmine waiting to be explored. It had some page-time but not nearly enough. The author of “Summer of Supernovas” has talent, but it was focused, in my opinion, on the wrong areas of the story. I wish there could be a do over, because there really is a story in there I would like to read. Unfortunately, I can’t recommend this one. This review is based upon a complimentary copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Below this paragraph, the following review has spoilers, because the chances are that you have read this book already and are looking to see other perspectives on it. If you are truly looking for a spoiler-free review of the book to help you decide whether to buy it, here you go: buy the book. It's clever, funny, insightful, and is so well-written that it's possible to empathize with each of the major characters, none of whom acts in an incomprehensible way. It is entertainment that treats its cast with kindness and imbues its members with intelligence and perfectly human flaws. You will lose yourself in this book enough that you will start wondering if you are reading the story or just remembering it from your own life. It's perfect to keep with you for the down times at your summer job, the train ride to the beach and the beach itself. Now for the spoilers. I want to make clear, from the outset, that I am not part of the target demographic for this book. I am a 38 year old cis/het/whitish male and have never been, in form or identity, a goofy teenage high school girl. I do, however, take turmeric every day. Not, you know, a spoonful of turmeric, because that would be nearly impossible, but a capsule full of the spice every morning. Turmeric is, among the naturopathic set, an effective immunomodulator and an antiinflammatory. All of that is more or less rubbish, which I know because I am a board-certified vascular surgeon and have done a thorough literature search about turmeric which, the natruropathic set aside, is a very tasty spice and not much more. And yet, every morning, I take a dose of turmeric, and do so enthusiastically, because my mother asks me to. Every morning, I remind myself of my mother and take a useless pill, and I don't do so despite its being irrational nonsense, but because of it. I take the pill and I pay tribute that the love of my family dwarfs reason and evidence and natural law. Wilhelmena Carlisle knows this. She's not an idiot. I've seen criticism of her behavior as so plainly ridiculous that she must be deranged, but this critique itself belies a ridiculously crude understanding of people. Wil's submission to astrology has nothing to do with a genuine belief in the practice; she isn't relying on the truth of the stars to direct her, but on the truth of how much she misses her mother, and how much she loves her. This book is the story of a girl who has suspended her life since the death of her mother and is afraid to keep going without her. She won't let anyone call her by her old name and the only way she can keep getting through each day is through the astrology that has come to take the place of her mom's presence. The conflict in this book isn't Seth-or-Grant, which isn't even a question, or even astrology-or-not, but whether or not Wilhelmena can accept that she has to become a woman and an adult without her mother's guidance or supervision. That she has to make decisions about her own happiness without that guidance, even in the surrogate form of astrology.
I seriously had a book hangover when I finished this novel because I just adored the main character and followed her story way into the wee hours of the morning. Wil is all about her astrological chart and what the stars and her astrology-loving mother has told her is her perfect match. But when she meets Grant, she is sent into a tailspin when she gets the stomach flutters for him but he is the absolutely wrong sign for her to be with. His brother, however, is a perfect match. So, well, she forces her feelings to please her mother, who has died, and to make the universe and, hopefully, herself ultimately happy. Woods totally balances hilarity with tons of relate-able emotion. She takes a cute book idea and turns it into a great, thought-provoking read by exploring the ideas of loyalty, love, and how to define who someone is. Bravo to this novel and to Darcy Woods for making it super-swoony!!
Oh, I had so much fun reading this! Wil is such a charming, quirky spirit, just spending time with her would have been reason enough to keep reading and reading. She's smart and thoughtful, and absolutely committed to finding her perfect astrological match. Now, I don't believe in astrology, but Wil has such compelling reasons for her commitment to it, I found myself fully empathizing with her belief that she had to make it work. After all, it's about her love for her late mother, and what could be more important than that? So when she finds herself drawn to a guy who's exactly the sign that her mother warned her against, well, that's a huge dilemma. But oh, this guy! This book is full of heart; it's about romantic love and family love and friends' love for each other. It's also witty, delightful, and full of cupcakes that sound so delicious, I could almost taste them. An all-around scrumptious read.
A unique and beautiful read! When you finish this book, you'll have a totally fresh understanding of what it means to be truly "star-crossed"--in life, and in love. Do NOT miss this wonderfully unpredictable and beautifully satisfying story due to the dreaded Triangle Talk! A love triangle exists in one-dimensional space, and this book has so many dimensions, I think it moved out of the realm of astrology and into physics. (Maybe it's a pyramid--deep, mystical, well-built, with lots of twists and turns and treasure inside. Yup, it's a pyramid.) This author is brilliant, and she makes it utterly work. Here's the story: Quirky, relatable and often hilarious Wilamena is too busy following astrological signs to notice any other kind of sign. Like "STOP", or "YIELD". Or even "WRONG WAY". But this heroine isn't an airhead; she's only trying to follow the destiny her astrologer mother figured out before she died, when Wilamena was only a child. So when her friend Irina helps her find a gorgeous, sexy guy (Seth) who's the perfect fit according to the stars, Wilamena goes for it, knowing the universe is going to love her choice...and so would her mom. Too bad that on the same evening, she meets the absolute *wrong* guy--Grant-- who somehow feels just too damn right. Neither one of these guys is going to make it easy for Wil to figure out how to deal with this situation. It doesn't help that they're brothers, either! The romance is firmly interwoven into a network of relationships. It has all kinds of love: from Wilamena's best friend, to her warm but tough grandmother who raised her, to her dear departed mother and even the question of her absent father. Seth and Grant have their own engaging network, as well, with family and friends and complex stories that led them to this moment. The way the author lovingly crafted every single sentence of this book provides still another dimension to the non-triangle. She gives the heroine the kind of "voice" that draws you in and makes you love her so much, you completely get why both Grant and Seth would love her, too. For example: "...the yoga DVD says this will help open my channels of energy and awaken my kundalini. Which...come to think of it, sounds kind of scary and messy." Or this one: "The grin on my face feels crooked, like a picture frame you tap this way and that, impossible to level." And how about: “...if time were really measured in grains of sand, I would take this grain and flatten it. Stretch it as far as physics allowed, let myself bask in this feeling. Forever and ever and ever.” I had to stop and re-read this stuff just to savor it--and there were so many more quotable lines! Now I'm sitting with this lovely book on the sofa next to me--a book that kept me caught up in its spell for days. I feel reluctant to write this review, because it means the book is finished, it's over, I'm not living with these characters anymore. SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS lit up my heart!
“One day you’ll be fluent in the language of the stars.” The Plot Steps of All ‘Happy’ Contemporaries: 1. Girl Meets Boy 2. Girl and Boy have undeniable chemistry 3. Girl and Boy Face Undefeatable Problem 4. The Girl Boy Faces The Worst Time in Their Life (sick relative/ divorcing parents) 5. Girl and Boy realise they are soulmates and have fallen in love with each other (separately) 6. One Great Reunion to end the book I’m right, you know I am. And yet, even while contemporaries mostly follow the same storyline, there are some that manage to stick to the norm and beat it hollow altogether. Summer of Supernovas is (mostly) one of those rare novels. “You’re kind of an unusual girl. No offense, Wil.” I grin. “Yeah, well, I tried ordinary once and got bored.” This had some elements that were GREAT: (AKA. I FELL MADLY IN LOVE WITH) 1. Astrology: I loved how this wasn’t put to the side as just some quirk of Wil’s to make her seem more interesting. This was really well done, when it was mentioned. In fact, I, non-believer in anything of this sort, started wondering is Astrology actually had some truth to it! 2. CHEMISTRY: This is a love triangle, okay? But the CHEMISTRY with both boys was REALLY REALLY good! 3. BAKERY/ CUPCAKES: Because, well cupcakes are AWESOME. And bakeries are even more awesome. This also had elements that were so cliché, they made me cringe: 1. The Best Friend: Irina was an AWESOME character, okay? AWESOME. I would read a story just about her and not get bored because she is AWESOME. And yet, in Wil’s story, she was this character that only showed up when the story required her, and she vanished otherwise. POOF. It just didn’t feel very real. 2. The Sick Relative: FOR GOD’S SAKE. STOP. The person our protagonist loves the most has a sudden medical ailment and the boy that was alienated comes running back. While this book could have been better, could have been as brilliant as a supernova, it fell just a little short. The chemistry was BEAUTIFULLY done, the cute scenes were swoon worthy, the food was mouth-watering, and I, overall, had a fun time reading Summer of Supernovas. 4 Stars!
4.5 twinkly, amazing stars!! Wil's mother was an expert astrologer, so from a very young age she was taught the truth lies within the stars. Wil is ready to find her Fifth House of relationship and love, and she realizes she only has 22 days to accomplish this feat. Wil is well aware of which signs she should steer clear from, and which is her best match... but to go with this logic, she must ignore her heart. Wil is struggling with this choice since both guys have wonderful assets, but one is chosen by the stars and one by her feelings. This story, guys!!! It was all kinds of adorbs from page 1. Yes, it's has a total rom com feeling that may make some roll their eyes... but whatevs, because I TOTALLY LOVED IT!! I'm a huge sucker for silly, funny, and romantic stories, and that's exactly what this was. But it wasn't all silliness and boys either... this story is about finding yourself as well and what truly makes you happy. The friendships are incredible as well. Wil and Irina are such wonderful best friends. They don't always see eye to eye, but their friendship lasts even the toughest times. I adored Wil right from the beginning and found her to be very real. She's quirky, spunky, and pretty self-conscious, but totally adorable at the same time. My favorite character in this story though was Wil's grandmother. Their relationship reminded me so much of my grandmother and me. It literally made me tear up a few times. Such a strong bond between grandmother and granddaughter, and I loved every second of it. Okay, let's all talk about the elephant in the room, the dreaded love triangle. *gasp* I know a lot of people despise love triangles. No. Matter. What. But, honestly, I'm not one of those people. I find myself really enjoying love triangles at times, when they're done appropriately. This one was definitely one right, and I enjoyed it quite a bit. I'm not going to go into too much detail about who these guys are because it's better if you don't know at this point... but let's just say it wasn't easy for Wil to choose which guy she was "meant" to be with. I was totally #TeamGrant, just for the record. Since my husband is a drummer, I have a soft spot for musicians. *swoon* Both, though, had several positive qualities that Wil liked, making her decision that much more difficult. And BOTH were swoon-worthy. ;) “...if time were really measured in grains of sand, I would take this grain and flatten it. Stretch it as far as physics allowed, let myself bask in this feeling. Forever and ever and ever.” Summer of Supernovas was such a fun and enjoyable read! I haven't read any stories about astrology that I can think of, but I know that this one will stick with me for quite some time. As a proud Cancer over here, I've always been interested in getting to know the signs and such more thoroughly. And though this book doesn't go into astrological signs in any sort of real depth, it was mentioned quite a bit and I loved all of the little additions here and there. This is an absolute must-read for your summer TBR! Even if you're not a fan of love triangles, you still may want to give this one a try. It's so much fun and definitely leaves you with the warm fuzzies when you turn that last page. I'm so excited to see what Darcy Woods brings us next. (Thanks to Crown Books for Young Readers for the review copy!)
SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS by Darcy Woods is a sweet & refreshing romantic read. If I only had one word to describe this book, it would be: "delightful!" Wil Carlisle is a spunky, smart, and completely lovable protagonist. Her search for true love seems to be in line with the stars, until she realizes the guy she might be falling for is not only the wrong fit, but the brother of her perfect astrological match. Drama and feelings abound... The writing is sharp, the characters are well developed, and the story arc is perfection. This book is packed with humor, passion, and one of the most swoon-worthy endings ever. I fell in love with these characters and this story immediately. SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS has officially made its way on to my favorites shelf. A MUST read!!!
Oh, how I adore this book. Quirky Wilamena Carlisle, lover of cupcakes and vintage dresses, falls for a swoony guitar player whose stars don’t exactly align with hers. The struggle to honor her dead mother’s fervent belief that astrology should guide all when the heart wants what it wants sets up the perfect conundrum. While this book is full of romance and humor, it also takes a thoughtful look at grief and all the ways we struggle to work through it while staying true to ourselves but still managing to honor those who have passed. This book is perfect for summer but will also warm you up in the cold days of winter. I closed the last page with a huge smile on my face.
One girl. Two brothers. An astrological chart. Love. Fate. A promise to a deceased mother. Darcy Woods brings you all this and more in her gorgeous debut, Summer of Supernovas. It took me about two seconds to fall in love with Wil, the quirky and unique main character who made me laugh time and again. Wil is unlike any protaganist I’ve met in the pages of contemporary YA and she is positively addicting. Readers will love Wil’s passion and confused heart. She’s hilarious, with all the idiosyncrasies that make her endearing and relatable. But underneath the flirty, funny, romancy cast and their dialogue, there is deep emotion in SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS. Woods asks her characters (and readers) to consider how we honor, accept and share every kind of love and this (for me) was the gem at the core of this shining debut. It is a rare book that has me laughing while simultaneously contemplating the rules of my heart, but that is the gift of SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS.
This book put stars in my eyes! Woods infuses her characters and words with so much sparkle. There is a lovely uniqueness to the main character, Wil (Wilamena), that just drew me in--from her vintage-loving style, to her astrological fixation. The heart of the story is deeply centered, a look at loss and letting go, portrayed honestly and with a sweet vulnerability, through Wil's humor-filled struggle to find love. I read this book in two days, because it was such a treat--as sweet a story as Gram's muffins. (Which, I'm warning you now--you're going to crave while reading this book!) A swoon-worthy debut!
I downloaded this because Christina was pushing it at me daily. And I'm so so so glad she did. Love love loved Wil and Grant and Seth. It's not exactly a triangle, but there are two swoony boys who say and do some of the sweetest things. And let's not forget the awesome secondary characters in Irina and Manny. I would happily devour a companion novel from either of them. I did get a bit irritated at some of the things Wil chose to do, but her snark helped me overlook them. The plot may have been a bit predictable, but I loved every page of it. And that ending was perfection. **Huge thanks to Crown Books for Young Readers and NetGalley for providing the arc in exchange for an honest review**
Summer of Supernovas is fun, fresh, and (really, really) funny—AND it has a lot of depth. It’s really hard to find a book with that kind of balance, and this book just nails it! It’s a story of a strong, independent, and fabulously quirky girl (Will) figuring out who she is and what she believes in life. Will’s voice and character stuck with me a long, long time after reading this. I seriously want to hang out with this girl! She’s trying to make sense of a complicated relationship with her mother and it’s truly beautiful how she grows and changes throughout the book. And speaking of complicated relationships—in a whole different way—there’s the Walker boys (Seth and Grant) vying for Will’s affection. Oh. My. Goodness. They are seriously hot and totally charming—AND they have their own interesting quirks and issues to work through too. A great read!