That Summer Sarah Dessen
That Summer The book “That Summer” by Sarah Dessen is a book about the relationship between two sisters, who have their struggles but come together in the end more as friends than as a family member.
Haven is just another teenage girl that doesn’t agree with what her body looks like and tries her hardest to either be noticed by the guy she likes or hide in the crowd from the girls she wants to avoid. Haven is six feet tall her freshman year and lives in the shadow of her twenty-one year old sister, Ashley.Ashley is a petite five-four, with a curvy rounded body that everyone wishes they had; tiny feet, perfect hair, small enough to be cute, but forceful enough to be respected. When Ashley was Havens age she had already been voted most popular, dated and rejected the captain of the football team, and was a star cheerleader.
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She was always number one. Ashley had the life every girl dreamed of: being popular and always had the cutest boyfriend at all times. Haven is the complete opposite; awkward and tall.
With her parents’ divorce and her father getting remarried, Haven has just been trying to quietly get over all the chaos in her life.Haven is doing well until Ashley announced she was getting married in a few months; on August nineteenth. Ashley was getting married to Lewis Warsher, who would be the end of Ashley’s long boyfriend list. Out of all Ashley’s boyfriends there was only one boyfriend that actually ever meant something to Haven, his name was Sumner Lee. Sumner wasn’t like anyone else Ashley had ever dated. Ashley liked the guys who were well dressed, football players, wresters, and maybe a tennis player here or there. Sumner on the other hand, didn’t fit this description.
He wasn’t an athlete. He was skinny with black curly hair and bright blue eyes. Sumner had changed Ashley in a way that meant the world to Haven. Ashley was different with Sumner around. Ashley was always rude to Haven; acted like she wasn’t there and ignored her. Now with Sumner around Ashley actually talked to Haven and treated her like a sister. This helped a lot to Haven because it was during the time period when their father was getting remarried to the weather girl.
One night Ashley and Sumner broke up.To Ashley it was like every other break up in her life; go to sleep, wake up in the morning and nothing was never wrong. Ashley would move on and forget about everything that had ever happened. While working one afternoon, Haven was on her lunch break and saw. . . .
. Sumner! She went up and talked to him and they caught up on things like how they’ve been. She told Sumner that Ashley was getting married and the world still revolves around Ashley. Between Havens awful job, Sumner, and Ashley and her wedding crisis every minute haven just couldn’t take it anymore.So she quit her job and ran away from home. Haven was at a nearby park, curled up into a ball just trying to forget everything that had happened to her. She was pretending that she wasn’t six feet tall and awkward.
Ashley wasn’t getting married. She was pretending that she was with Sumner. On the street of the other side of the park the purring noise of a car was going by that she’s heard before. It was Sumner’s car. Haven immediately got up and followed him to a nearby senior center where he was volunteering at. It was a dance night there.Haven went inside and was watching Sumner dance with all the old ladies.
Haven watched him dance for a while and as she was walking away Sumner ran over and grabbed her by the waist and pulled her close to him for the last dance of the night. All the senior citizens were in a perfect circle around the both of Haven and Sumner swaying back and forth to the music. The music was coming to a stop. Haven and Sumner were gazing into each other’s eyes and when Sumner leaned into Haven, she just leaned into him and closed her eyes for a kiss.This is what Haven has been dreaming of and tonight was when it all finally came true. Haven got into Sumner’s car so he could take her home and that’s when she broke down. She told him everything; about how she quit her job, running away from home, and how she just couldn’t take Ashley and all her problems anymore.
Haven didn’t want to go home but that was the place Sumner was going to take her. Haven wasn’t going home so she got out of the car and ran into the nearby woods. It started to rain and haven was lost and had no idea where she was at.Meanwhile, Sumner was at havens house telling her family what had just happened. After that Ashley ran out looking for haven and found her in the woods in the pouring rain. When Ashley found Haven, Haven just started to cry and told Ashley how everything was wrong. Ashley was comforting to Haven more than she’s ever been and that’s exactly what Haven needed.
Today was the day of Ashley’s wedding. As Haven and her mother were walking to their car, her mother stopped her and told her that things would be better and that Haven needs to accept the fact that her sister was happy getting married to Lewis.During the wedding Haven was wishing that she could talk to her sister one more time before she walked down the aisle but she was too late. Ashley was already walking down the aisle and was as beautiful as always. When Ashley got to Haven she stopped and hugged Haven. Haven realized that everything was going to be ok at that moment. I really liked this book and would recommend it to anyone.
It really shows the struggle between two sisters and how they overcome it. The book talks about the divorce between Havens parents and kids who have had their parents split up might really relate to it.