The Gypsy Moth Summer by Julia Fierro
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
In my opinion, it felt like this book was trying to do too much, and in that process feel completely short of everything it set out to accomplish. There are so many things going on here (TW for: Animal cruelty, profanity, drug use & alcohol abuse,racial prejudice, an abused wife) that sometimes it was too painful to read what was going on that I had to put the book down and just take a breather for the intense conflict.
There are bugs overtaking this isolated island, most literally and metaphorically. Leslie is the daughter of the esteemed Navy commander who isn't who he seems, and moves in with her black husband and biracial children to a house called "The Castle". It's has a mysterious maze and is an enchanting place to all of the other islanders.
Than there's Maddie, trying to be a full-on teen drama queen, and yet just experiencing first love for the first time with the new black boy in town, Brooks. Ah to be in young and in love, but it wasn't romantic to me, instead it became stilted and fell flat. The sexual situations were overused, there was no many sensual details. It awkwardly started to detract from the story and I thought the majority of it was unnecessary.
Usually, I'm such a sucker for hints of star-crossed lovers but in this book it just didn't work. Sure, there were secret trips to see eachother in the dark, both sets of parents disproved, they came from completely different backgrounds, but it was missing every excellent point that I genuinely enjoy in that trope. And in the end that was one of my biggest disappointments with this one.
**Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.**
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