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Review of The Girls of Summer by Katie Bishop

This scorching, sun-soaked debut is the book of the summer. Written in a dual timeline, the novel explores the coming of age story of teenager Rachel who, on holiday in Greece, is seduced by Alistair, a man 20 years older, which tempts her to remain on the Greek island. Sixteen years later, Rachel returns to the island and, unsatisfied in her marriage, seeks out Alistair to uncover the secrets buried behind in the sand because not all was as it seemed.  Rachel refused to see Alistair as an antagonist to what happened during the nights at the fancy parties he hosted for his boss, and she won't accept the scandalous accusations her friends are now making about how they were treated, because Rachel was too young, too naïve and vulnerable, to see what was really going on within the stifling heat.

This book is intended to be read by the beach, sipping lemon Fanta with an ice lolly dripping down your fingers. Like a heatwave, this book is sweltering and sometimes uncomfortable. Shaded by the dark goings on when the sun sets, this book is not a light-hearted read, but one which will stay with you like sand sticks to your skin and gets in your shoes. You won't be able to resist booking a holiday to Greece as soon as you've finished it, then read it all over again in your own island paradise. 

Review by Victoria.

The Girls of Summer was published on 25/05/23 by Bantam Press.

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