The Changing Season - Review

The Changing Season by Steven Manchester
Publication date: February 23, 2016
Publisher: The Story Plant
Source: Publisher/author via NetGalley for an honest review

This was supposed to be a simple summer for Billy; one more lazy expanse of time before college began. He'd fill the hours playing with Jimmy – his canine best buddy – going camping and doing all the things he promised Jimmy they'd do before Billy left.

But that was before the accident that shook the entire town.

It was before the summer job that turned into something so much more than a way to get a paycheck.

And it was before Vicki.

This summer was destined to be many things to Billy, things he didn't truly understand until now. But it was definitely not going to be simple.

My Take:

The Changing Season was one of those books that was featured in one of NetGalley's emails and it had several favorable blurbs and it sounded like a nice, sweet story, so I requested an  e-galley.  Life got busy and it took me awhile to get around to reading it - although I did attempt it a couple of times but just didn't get into it and had other more pressing deadlines, so I put it down. 

Since the author contacted me (several times) about a review, I made time to read the book. I know that The Changing Season is supposed to be a heartwarming coming-of-age story that takes place during the summer between high school graduation going off to college. And I guess, technically, it is exactly that. The main character Billy is a self-centered teen with a good heart and a good brain - just your typical teenager. His best friend Jimmy - his dog - has been his loyal friend for years. Billy gets a job at an animal shelter and learns a lot about people, animals and himself. He has a great mentor and makes a decision about his future. 

Something bad happens because of one of Billy's friends and then this friend spends the summer avoiding responsibility for it. Billy gets a girlfriend then loses her. But he grows up over the summer and heads off to college a young man. 

I guess this book just isn't my cup of tea. It just seemed to me to be a kind of fairy tale written by adults to tell to other adults about our kids. Much of the dialogue just didn't ring authentic or likely to me. If the story had taken place in the fifties or sixties, maybe, but I just couldn't buy it. If you enjoy After School Special or Hallmark movie-type stories, then you may really like The Changing Season. Unfortunately, it just didn't work for me.


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