The Square Root of Summer - Harriet Reuter Hapgood

This is what it means to love someone. This is what it means to grieve someone. It's a little bit like a black hole. It's a little bit like infinity.

Gottie H. Oppenheimer is losing time. Literally. When the fabric of the universe around her seaside town begins to fray, she's hurtled through wormholes to her past:

To last summer, when her grandfather Grey died. To the afternoon she fell in love with Jason, who wouldn't even hold her hand at the funeral. To the day her best friend Thomas moved away and left her behind with a scar on her hand and a black hole in her memory.

Although Grey is still gone, Jason and Thomas are back, and Gottie's past, present, and future are about to collide—and someone's heart is about to be broken.

With time travel, quantum physics, and sweeping romance, The Square Root of Summer is an exponentially enthralling story about love, loss, and trying to figure it all out, from stunning debut YA voice, Harriet Reuter Hapgood.

 

I think 'strange' is the best way to describe this book. If I'd been more invested, this could have been strong.

 

I had to suspend my disbelief about halfway through and I went with the flow instead of trying to wrap my head around what was happening, but perhaps that meant that I got less out of the book because I was rather confused by what had happened at the end. If I'd spent less time being confused, I might have become more invested in this book. I did appreciate that the author tried to mathematically explain all that happened and I loved a certain cannoli analogy, but I didn't understand it enough to buy why it would happen just to her.

 

I felt that the characters could have been better fleshed out. Sof, for example, had a personality that was a neat idea but only really shone through once. I don't even know who Meg was, though she was fun when stoned. I felt like reading Jason and Thomas talking they could have been the same people. That was a real detriment to the book in my opinion.

 

Ultimately I think the most important aspect to this was overcoming grief and managing to achieve and accomplish despite. Our main character, Gottie, was an incredibly talented mathematician (physician?) and I appreciated that her talent didn't go unrecognised.

 

If you really enjoy (or even have a baseline understanding of) math and physics and enjoy YA, this might be for you. But I think I'll have to read this another two times before I'm no longer puzzled.

 

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.