Review: Summer Heat by Rachel Van Dyken (Cruel Summer #1)



Summer Heat by Rachel Van Dyken
Series: Cruel Summer #1
Publication Date: August 2, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance


SummerHeat_eBook_HighRes (1)


Spoiled Princess is what he used to call me.

We were an inferno of hate and passion wound up with a dash of chaos.

For four years I watched him mow my lawn.

For four years I watched my friends make fun of him.

For four years I hated myself for wanting him, but even more for the way I treated him.

And then I had him.

For one night, we put all labels away and I spent the best night of my life in his arms.

Then the next day, with my secret night under lock and key, I looked the other way while my friends shamed him.

But now the jokes on me, because the scrawny lawn boy who I secretly loved from afar is now the director of Hollywood’s most exclusive summer camp.

And I’m on his staff.

Now it’s his turn to punish me.

His turn to make me pay.

His turn to take his revenge after years of humiliation.

He’s no longer a boy you can ridicule.

But a college graduate who can have any woman he wants.

I want him to look at me the way he did that one night we had together, but right now

the look in his eyes tells me he’s going to enjoy having me under him for two straight months.

I don’t know where his hatred ends, his passion begins.

All I know is he wants revenge.

And I’m his lucky target.


Now this is the epitome of an enemies-to-lovers story. Holy moly. I’ve never felt so much hate and sexual tension together in a book before. It was NUTS. And… I think that is exactly the reason I didn’t love this book. 

For starters, I’m not a huge fan of enemies-to-lovers (The Hating Game is always my exception). You’re probably thinking “well, you shouldn’t have picked up this book!” and you’re right but I can’t say no to Rachel Van Dyken’s books so there’s that.
Second of all, I’m not the biggest fan of enemies-to-lovers even when there’s barely any “hate” involved so imagine how I felt reading a story where the main characters were absolutely horrible to each other in the past and because of that they really, truly, honestly feel a lot of hate towards each other in the present and SOMEHOW they are still attracted to each other. Just imagine!

Another reason (aside from me not being a fan of enemies-to-lovers) I wanted to drop this book is because I couldn’t—and still can’t—understand how the main characters were going to get through the hate and start loving each other when all I could feel was a lot of anger and baggage and tension. HOW does one go from hating the person who basically bullied you to loving them? I don’t know! I’m sure it is possible but I’m good at holding grudges. And apparently not very good at forgiving.

In the end, Summer Heat was not the book for me and I think the entire world can see that even from miles away.
I kept reading it because I had to see how it ended and now I can’t get off the bandwagon because it ends on a cliffhanger. So keep that in mind if you decide this is the book for you! You’re going to want to know what happens next whether you love it or not. But I’m pretty sure this is a very unpopular opinion and I think most of y’all are really going to enjoy this one so you probably have nothing to worry about!


2 / 5 flowers




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Rachel Van Dyken is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestselling author of regency and contemporary romances. When she’s not writing you can find her drinking coffee at Starbucks and plotting her next book while watching The Bachelor.

She keeps her home in Idaho with her Husband, adorable son, and two snoring boxers! She loves to hear from readers!

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