Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Review of A Midsummer's Nightmare by Kody Keplinger

Title: A Midsummer's Nightmare
Author: Kody Keplinger
Published by: Poppy
Pages: 304
Source: Library
Format: Hardcover
Rating: 4 stars
Summary from GoodreadsWhitley Johnson's dream summer with her divorcé dad has turned into a nightmare. She's just met his new fiancée and her kids. The fiancée's son? Whitley's one-night stand from graduation night. Just freakin' great.

Worse, she totally doesn't fit in with her dad's perfect new country-club family. So Whitley acts out. She parties. Hard. So hard she doesn't even notice the good things right under her nose: a sweet little future stepsister who is just about the only person she's ever liked, a best friend (even though Whitley swears she doesn't "do" friends), and a smoking-hot guy who isn't her least, not yet. It will take all three of them to help Whitley get through her anger and begin to put the pieces of her family together.

Kody Keplinger doesn't shy away from the awkward and uncomfortable situations people get themselves into...instead she makes them into fascinating and a bit scandalous YA novels. 

A Midsummer's Nightmare is a great contemporary read.  The characters themselves are realistic and even though Whitley and Nathan's situation may be a little extreme, they are both common teenagers.  They are not the type of people to be worshiped and put on a pedestal, instead they are real and flawed.  And the best thing is they change.  It gives hope to people that no matter what stereotype you may get filed under, you can still change and become the person you want to be.   

You cannot read a Kody Keplinger novel and not applaud her for the scenarios she puts her characters in.  There are edgy and saucy.  They are not a love affair at a boarding school, where everyone is perfect and very swoon worthy.  Instead she writes her stories as if she walked into the local area high school and just immersed herself in the culture.  Some of the character's you'll hate and some you'll love; there will be ones who annoying you and ones you want for your best friend.  You may not always agree with them or approved of them, but they are real.  To me this is a huge part of what makes a contemporary YA novel great. 

Though her novels do feature more swearing than I'd like, they also focus on sexual relationships of young adults.  This is a very touchy subject with many people and I know some parents would rather their children not be exposed to it.   I am not a parent so I cannot say what I would do in the situation, but I do know that by the end of the novel there is always a strong female empowerment and self-esteem message.  For me instead of focusing on the sexual aspect of the novel, it's more about the main characters realizing that they are women of worth and dignity; for me that's powerful message I want all young adults to know. 


  1. I couldn't agree with you more...and I've only read The DUFF. I'm desperately longing to get my hands on this one.

  2. I've only read The DUFF, but I have to agree with you about Keplinger, and the empowerment messages she is not afraid to put out there. I really admire her for that. I'm definitely looking forward to check this one out myself.

  3. I've never read any of Kody's books, and I feel like I really need to! This one sounds really good, as well as The DUFF. Thanks for the review!


I love love love hearing your wonderful thoughts! Thanks for stopping by and happy reading.