Books To Read After “The Summer I Turned Pretty”

“The Summer I Turned Pretty” is more than just a book series – it’s a journey into the complexities of youth, wrapped in the warmth of sun-soaked days and fleeting summer romances. Many of us found a piece of ourselves in Jenny Han’s vivid narrative, identifying with the characters’ struggles and triumphs.

So, you’ve turned the last page and closed the book, but you’re not quite ready to leave the world of beach houses, first loves, and transformative summers behind. We understand that feeling all too well, which is why we’ve compiled this list of books to read after “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

This blog post serves as a literary road map, guiding you towards stories that embody similar themes and stir the same emotions. Whether you’re longing for more sweet romances, or you’re seeking novels that explore the intricacies of coming-of-age, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s dive in!

Characteristics of Books Similar to “The Summer I Turned Pretty”

The books that resonate with fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty” share a unique blend of characteristics that echo the essence of Jenny Han’s beloved series. Let’s explore these key aspects.

Exploring Themes

The backbone of “The Summer I Turned Pretty” is its poignant themes, which range from the magic of summer and the pain and joy of growing up, to the complexities of romantic relationships and family dynamics. The books we recommend will delve into these themes, each in their own unique and compelling ways.

Relatable, Nuanced Characters

Han’s characters aren’t just names on a page – they’re individuals with distinct personalities, flaws, and growth arcs. This level of characterization immerses readers, evoking empathy and engagement. Our book recommendations feature similarly well-drawn characters who you’ll love getting to know.

Book Recommendations

In this section, we introduce a selection of books that encapsulate the spirit and themes of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”. Each comes with a brief synopsis and an explanation of why fans of Jenny Han’s series might enjoy it.

“Since You’ve Been Gone” by Morgan Matson

In “Since You’ve Been Gone”, Emily finds herself adrift when her best friend Sloane disappears, leaving behind a summer to-do list that pushes Emily out of her comfort zone. As she embarks on a journey of self-discovery, the book touches on themes of friendship, self-confidence, and adventure. The potent combination of summer escapades and emotional growth is sure to resonate with fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“We Were Liars” by E. Lockhart

“We Were Liars” tells the story of Cadence Sinclair Eastman, who spends her summers on a private island with her cousins and a special boy named Gat. After an accident leaves her with amnesia, she struggles to piece together what happened. The book’s exploration of family dynamics, love, and the pain of growing up echoes the themes found in Jenny Han’s series.

“Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe” by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

In this coming-of-age tale, Aristotle and Dante are two boys with vastly different personalities. Over the course of a fateful summer, they form an unbreakable bond. Through their friendship, the book explores themes of identity, belonging, and the bittersweet transition from adolescence to adulthood, making it a great follow-up read to “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“The Last Song” by Nicholas Sparks

“The Last Song” revolves around Veronica ‘Ronnie’ Miller, who spends a transformative summer with her estranged father. Amid family tensions and new romances, Ronnie matures and learns important life lessons. Its blend of familial relationships, young love, and personal growth parallels the themes that have endeared “The Summer I Turned Pretty” to so many readers.

“Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour” by Morgan Matson

This novel takes you on a journey with Amy, who embarks on a cross-country road trip with Roger, an unexpected companion. Along the way, they face their pasts and look forward to the future. Its themes of self-discovery, overcoming personal obstacles, and young love make it a fitting continuation for those who have enjoyed “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

Honorable Mentions

While the previous books made the main cut, there are many more novels out there that echo the themes and emotions of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”. Here are a few more that deserve recognition:

“Second Chance Summer” by Morgan Matson

A heartrending tale about a girl who, over the course of one long summer, must find the strength to face a family crisis and forgive. The exploration of familial bonds and self-discovery aligns well with the themes of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“Just Listen” by Sarah Dessen

This novel tells the story of a girl dealing with a traumatic event, navigating high school, family, and self-discovery. Its engaging narrative and deep themes make it a compelling read for fans of Jenny Han’s series.

“Fangirl” by Rainbow Rowell

“Fangirl” revolves around Cath, a fanfiction writer who struggles with the challenges of starting college, evolving relationships, and her own social anxiety. Its insightful look into the ups and downs of growing up makes it a worthy mention.

“My Life Next Door” by Huntley Fitzpatrick

This book dives into a story of forbidden love, family dynamics, and moral dilemmas. Its intricate relationships and well-drawn characters will appeal to fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“I’ll Give You the Sun” by Jandy Nelson

A vibrant tale about twins Noah and Jude, who cope with love, loss, and familial relationships. The book’s exploration of personal growth and complex family dynamics offers a familiar touchstone for fans of Jenny Han’s series.

Additional Recommendations

There are many books that encapsulate the same spirit as “The Summer I Turned Pretty”. Here are ten additional recommendations, each offering a unique exploration of similar themes:

“The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” by Ann Brashares

This book follows the lives of four friends who share a pair of magical jeans throughout their summer. Each girl experiences growth and self-discovery, echoing the coming-of-age theme prominent in “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“Eleanor & Park” by Rainbow Rowell

In this novel, two misfits, Eleanor and Park, share an unexpected love story. It offers a deep exploration of first love and the pains and joys of adolescence, much like Jenny Han’s series.

“Looking for Alaska” by John Green

This coming-of-age novel about a boy named Miles who goes to a boarding school and meets a girl named Alaska. It explores the depths of growing up, love, and loss, themes familiar to fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“An Abundance of Katherines” by John Green

This book delves into the story of a child prodigy who only dates girls named Katherine. Its exploration of relationships, self-discovery, and growth makes it a fitting choice for fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“The Truth About Forever” by Sarah Dessen

In this novel, Macy’s summer stretches out with predictability until she lands a job at Wish Catering. The book explores themes of love, self-discovery, and the power of the unexpected, much like Jenny Han’s series.

“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky

A coming-of-age novel that explores themes of adolescence, trauma, and the journey to self-discovery. Fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty” will resonate with its exploration of these profound themes.

“Thirteen Reasons Why” by Jay Asher

While more serious, this book explores the impact of our actions on others and the power of the truths we keep hidden. This examination of consequential themes can be appreciated by those who enjoyed “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.

“Love & Gelato” by Jenna Evans Welch

A sweet and comforting novel about a girl who travels to Italy after her mother’s death. It beautifully intertwines themes of love, self-discovery, and dealing with loss, appealing to fans of Jenny Han’s series.

“Before I Fall” by Lauren Oliver

This novel features a protagonist reliving her last day for a week, learning to understand herself and the people around her. Its exploration of self-discovery and the value of life makes it a worthy recommendation.

“Along for the Ride” by Sarah Dessen

A story of a girl experiencing a transformative summer in a beach town. Its exploration of self-discovery, family, and first love will resonate with fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”.


And there we have it – a selection of novels ripe for exploration once you’ve turned the last page of “The Summer I Turned Pretty”. Each offers a unique journey, imbued with elements of summer adventure, love, coming-of-age, and the complexities of family dynamics.

We hope that these books not only fill the Jenny Han-shaped hole in your reading list, but also introduce you to new characters and worlds that resonate with you. So, ready your beach chair and sun hat, because there are more literary summers awaiting you on these pages.

Remember, no two readers are alike. What resonates with one person might not strike the same chord with another. The beauty of literature lies in its ability to offer something for everyone. Explore these books, and don’t stop there. The world is full of stories waiting to be discovered.

Now, it’s over to you. Happy reading!

Leave a Comment