The Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Hapgood // The Gorgeous Cover Kind of Fooled Me

Thursday, 26 May 2016
The Square Root of Summer, by Harriet Reuter Hapgood
Publication: May 3, 2016, by Roaring Brook Press
Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Romance, Time-Traveling
Pages: 295
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Rating: ½

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.

My Thoughts:

I was kind of fooled by this beautiful cover, my lovely reviewers. Kind of. Slightly. I'm kidding. I was a LITTLE MORE than SLIGHTLY fooled by this cover and the time-traveling premise of Harriet Reuter Hapgood's debut novel that was released at the perfect moment—before summer and before allergy season (which has hit now), before I get the sniffles and am not able to look at books for a few days because my eyes are blurry. 'Twas a perfect period of time to release the book, but surely not a perfect story overall. I found this one to be too good to be true. In fact, it was not as math-based or philosophically inclined as I expected when I requested it for review.

The Square Root of Summer was supposed to be what you first thought: about time traveling and rewinding. I saw this more of a coming of age, moving story about a girl who is trying to discover what memories are important in life and what should she keep in mind as she makes new decisions and all of that jazz. This was mostly focused on the ever-building romance between Gottie and Thomas, two "best friends" who have known each other since birth and were separated by Thomas moving. He comes back, and things speed up once more even though they were separated for a real long time and y'know... once we become teenagers, shiz changes. Greatly, sometimes, even. I do not want to head back to my eleven-year-old life, let's just say that.

I liked this one, don't get me wrong. Hapgood delivers a good message in this story, proving that we all have what it takes to form bonds (once again) with people who may be our enemies (even though it has never happened to me), or with people who we lost ages ago. 

Five Reasons Why I Gave This 3.5 Stars:

1. It missed the "WOW factor." I think y'all get it. I just was not able to see the thing that draws me in so much and keeps me drawn in. I read this because I was initially intrigued, but that seemed to fade away after I kept reading and things started to speed up, or in this case, s l o w down. I wanted more mathematical concepts explained, more theoretical stuff, less fluff. WHY THE FLUFF, HARRIET?!

2. I loved Gottie. Once in a while us readers are introduced to a protagonist who is so relatable that we feel like the book is strictly about our lives and it turns out to be kind of... creepy. Gottie was that person for me. When I read a book, I do not go into it expecting to be able to relate to every single character and feel like it's my life. But when it does happen, it turns out to be a factor that just makes me enjoy the book even more. I even had this conversation with my friends today. We laughed and anchored about a book that was supposedly "so bad" to others but I loved it. I turn out to be the black sheep in those senses a few times while reading. This? I was equal with everyone else. This is not a five star read, but Gottie's lovely, cheery character made everything a touch better. 

3. It's different. Uniqueness is that DEFINITE factor that makes me smile a bit. Jokes. A LOT. I love diversity in themes, and this definitely had it. I love ROMANCE WITH TIME TRAVELING. And this time-traveling had a twist, my friends! Let's head into the Tardis or whatever you Whowards or whatever call it. *wink*

4. You will enjoy it. I'm pretty sure it's everyone's cup of tea. I mean, there's a bitter taste at the start, but things do get better.

5. Thomas is smoking. Not as in cigarettes but as in HOT FACTOR. I ship Gottie and him so hard. *giggles*

"Thomas didn't belong on his side of the hedge, where the lawn was neatly clipped and his scary dad's rules were practically laminated. And I didn't quite belong on mine, where we were allowed to roam free. It wasn't about like or love—we were always together. We shared a brain. And now he's coming back..." (15)

The Square Root of Summer is that beachy read for your science nerds. Or for anyone, for that matter. I loved its depth, characters and diversity in themes, compared to your typical contemporary romance featuring long-lost lovers. Boom, this is the perfect book to add to your TBR list right now. This instant. This time period. Or, you could just go back in time and pretend that you did it already. You're a genius.

*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for a honest review. Thank you so much!*

What is the most 'mathematical' YA book you've read? Isn't this cover gorgeous?


  1. I so badly want to read this, it sounds good! I'm sorry you didn't love it but I'm glad it wasn't too bad. ;D I haven't actually read that many YA books that have science/mathematical elements in it...meh. Great review!

    1. Thank you! I was immediately captivated by the scientific thing... I really hope you enjoy this one! It's the perfect summer read to just quickly skip through on a rainy day, so I definitely recommend getting it! Perhaps you could enjoy it more than I did! :P


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