You have to step off the trail to find your path....
When her mother unceremoniously dumps her at Camp Mapplewood for the summer, Emma Lane’s hopes of repairing their fractured relationship are gone with the wind. Now she’s stuck in the wilderness facing her worst fears. Trees? Terrifying. Spiders? Even worse. And don’t even get Emma started on how she feels about camp activities. But Emma’s got a plan, and she will do anything in her power to get kicked out of camp, from sleeping in to playing practical jokes on her fellow campers. Yet when Emma draws the attention of her illusive and attractive camp counselor Vivian Black, she has to come to terms with the fact that how her summer starts isn’t necessarily how it might end. Will Vivian be the key to unlocking Emma’s fears once and for all?
The summer before Emma Lane's eighteenth birthday is the last summer she will have to return to York Beach, Maine for the court ordered two months of visitation with her mother. Since Emma came out as gay at the age of twelve, her mother has been unaccepting of her sexuality, distant and divorced her father. Now, Emma returns to York Beach only to be dumped at Camp Maplewood where she suffered a traumatic episode several years before throwing Emma into a depression complete with PTSD while her mother jet sets around the world with her new husband. Emma immediately sets out to get herself thrown out of camp by breaking into the shed holding the camper's phones only to be thwarted at every attempt by counselor Vivian Black. As Emma deals with her worst fears at camp, she makes a friend in chipper, outgoing Gwen Black and a passion for cooking with Julie Black, the camp cook. Each time Emma even thinks about doing something to get herself kicked out, Vivian seems to be a step ahead, helping Emma through her fears and getting to know her well, maybe even more.
Night Owls and Summer Skies is a perfect summer romance. I loved that Emma's character was already secure in her sexuality and that finding her sexuality was not the main point of the book, this was simply a romance. Emma's character also had deeper issues such as her depression and PTSD which still affect her, but don't define her. The writing brought me into Emma's head and at times I felt like I was having a panic attack along with her. Emma's growth at camp was amazing to read through. From dealing with bullies, making friends, finding a hobby she enjoys and learning how to trust again along with slowly recovering from her trauma from years before. Emma and Vivian's relationship felt natural and unhurried as they simply fell into one another. I did find it a little weird that they were counselor and camper, although they were only one year apart in age. I do wish there was some growth for Emma's mother along with some of the other campers; however, it is Emma's story. Overall, a fun summer romance.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.