Title: The Square Root of Summer
Author: Harriet Reuter Hapgood
Year Published: 2016
Goodreads link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27420164-the-square-root-of-summer
“Last summer, Gottie’s life fell apart. Her beloved grandfather Grey died and Jason left her – the boy to whom she lost her virginity (and her heart) – and he wouldn’t even hold her hand at the funeral! This summer, still reeling from twin heartbreaks, Gottie is lost and alone and burying herself in equations. Until, after five years absence, Thomas comes home: former boy next door. Former best friend. Former everything. And as life turns upside down again she starts to experience strange blips in time – back to last summer, back to what she should have seen then . . .”
The Square Root of Summer was the perfect book for me to end the summer season with. Books that feature romance could swing either way for me. Sometimes, I find the romance a little too sickly sweet which can make the characters really annoying. But in TSROS, the romance often took a step back and was mostly focused on her grief for her grandfather, the whole reason I wanted to pick up the book in the first place. Having lost my grandfather back in 2013, I could really relate to Gottie as she was mourning. It’s a pattern of emptiness when you are so used to seeing someone everyday of your life and then they’re suddenly not there anymore.
I thought the use of “wormholes” were really interesting to read about. It felt like a fresh new take on flashback scenes in novels. And there are illustrations throughout the book describing how the wormholes happen. Gottie is really into physics and I was worried that the science side of the book would go over my head, as it’s an area I have a real lack of knowledge in. And I was pleasantly surprised to find that it didn’t. Watching scenes from Gottie’s past really shaped who she was as a character and enhanced the development of her character towards the end of the book.
I really enjoyed the characters as well. I enjoyed reading about Gottie’s family – her father and her brother as well as her grandfather who has passed away. The book is just over 300 but I do wish it was a bit longer so we could see more into her past with Thomas before he moved away. And I wish we could see more of her friendship with Sof who moved to the town after Thomas left, I really liked her and I don’t think she featured enough in the book.
Overall, The Square Root of Summer is a wonderful, fast contemporary that makes you feel reminiscent of summer. The day after I finished the book, I attended an event at Waterstones in Piccadilly titled ‘Time Slips + Time Capsules’ that Harriet Reuter Hapgood attended. Also on the panel were Holly Bourne & Non Pratt. And I had such a wonderful time watching the authors speak so passionately about their books, through the theme of time. In ‘The Square Root…’ Gottie & Thomas create a time capsule for them to open when they are older. So I decided to create my own time capsule of Summer 2016.
My 2016 Summer Time Capsule
- Samantha Barks’ self titled album and tour tickets.
At the start of the year, my absolute favourite person, Samantha Barks announced she was going to release her debut album June 2016. Alongside the album release she was also going on tour across the UK performing songs from the album. In my time capsule I would keep my tickets from her shows in Bromley, Shoreditch & Richmond as well as a copy of her album. And I’d also throw in the polaroid picture I have of us that was taken before her gig in Shoreditch.
* I also reviewed her preview show at the St James Studio earlier this year if you would like to know more about Samantha and her album!
- DNCE ticket/EP
My absolute jam this summer has been ‘Cake By The Ocean’ by DNCE. And I recently saw them perform at their headline show in London at the o2 academy Islington. Where Jen & I had a space at the barrier and a front row view and it was incredible.
- West Ham United ticket.
My dad and I attended the first home match of West Ham United’s at their new home at the London Stadium, Olympic Park. It was such a thrilling atmosphere only topped by the fact West Ham won 3-0!
- My YALC lanyard
While I only attended one day of YALC 2016, I had such a fantastic time meeting authors/seeing old friends/attending panels. I can’t wait for 2017 and I’m hoping I can do all three days!
- Jeremy Jordan concert wristband
Also this summer, I got to see the man with the best voice ever, Jeremy Jordan perform in London for the first time. It was an experience and a half. If you ever get a chance to watch Jeremy perform, please do. I also reviewed his concert in a previous post if you would like to know more!
Probably not a wise decision to include food in a time capsule so I’ll probably keep the receipts? I had many trips to Nandos this summer and I always love going there to catch up with friends or as a pre-theatre meal.
- School of Rock cast album
Lastly in my time capsule is the Original Broadway Cast Album of School of Rock:The Musical. I was almost close to putting Alex Brightman, who plays Dewey Finn,himself in a box but I don’t think that would work out well. So I’ll take his vocals instead. I first heard one of the songs ‘Stick It To The Man’ on the jukebox in The Theatre Cafe and fell in love with the cast album instantly. I can’t wait for the show to come to London in October!
Thanks for reading! What would you put in your time capsule?
Until next time,