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The Summer of Impossible Things

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  4,937 ratings  ·  618 reviews
If you could change the past, would you?

How far would you go to save the person you love?
Luna is about to do everything she can to save her mother's life.
Even if it means sacrificing her own.
Kindle Edition, 432 pages
Published June 29th 2017 by Ebury Digital (first published May 4th 2017)
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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,937 ratings  ·  618 reviews

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Emer (A Little Haze)
I've been a fan of Rowan Coleman's books for a number of years. I always found that they were intelligently written and wonderfully stirring stories. That is until I read her two most recent novels. Both of which individually were wonderful..but when read one after another I found that there were too many similarities. Shared motifs. The writing felt sadly jaded and I was quite upset to think that perhaps I had fallen out of love with one of my favourite women's literature writers.

Then I read t
Aug 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This won Book of the Month on my blog for July 2017:

The Summer of Impossible Things is the first book I’ve read by this author, despite her books having been recommended to me on many occasions. It’s my usual excuse of so many talented authors, thousands of great books, and not enough hours in the day. If only time would slow down each time I decided to read a book.

Wow! The ‘Author’s Note’ alone at the very beginning had me completely fascinated and bursti
Sep 01, 2017 marked it as will-probably-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
I will not be finishing this book - I have been kinda reading it for like forever and I just can't ever seem to get into the mood to pick it up. This is very much a me-thing and not a reflection on the book. I expected something more in the realm of scifi and less in the realm of family drama. The first is a genre I adore, the second one I frequently struggle with. However, it is wonderfully written and the characters rang true for me: so if you enjoy family dramas with a bit of a twist, this mi ...more
Dale Harcombe
If you could go back and learn more about your mother and what she was like when she was young, wouldn’t you want to do it? That is the premise of this novel. After her mother’s death Luna finds herself suddenly transported back to 1977 where she comes face to face with her mother as a young woman. That week events transpired that changed her mother’s life and subsequently that of her two daughters, Pia and Luna. Whatever the cost to herself, Luna decides to make every effort to go back and chan ...more
Liz Barnsley
Feb 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is made entirely of magic.

Beautifully written and stunning in its impact, this is a story about love in all its forms and the things we sacrifice for it.

Also: Time travel and Disco. So what else do you honestly need?

Rowan Coleman writes with such a gorgeous lyrical style that you get caught up in the narrative and come out the other side a little starry eyed. And a little tearful. Luna is such an engaging protagonist, thrown into a strange and unlikely situation, during a very sad time
Apr 21, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
This book was on virtually every 'must-read' list for 2017, so I went hunting for it on Netgalley, who thankfully provided me a copy.

We follow Luna and her sister Pia, newly grieving for their Mum. They've headed from England to their Mum's hometown in Bay Ridge to settle her finances and sell her old home. Having recently uncovered a mind-numbing secret about Luna's origins, the girls are trying to fathom how to deal with all this information.

And then something truly bizarre happens to Luna. In
Aug 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
The reign of mediocrity ends with this delightfully charming book!!!
Luna sets out on an adventure to save her mother; running the risk of losing herself in the process.
After the suicide of their mother (no spoiler it’s in the blurb I promise you) Luna and her sister Pea take a trip to Bau Ridge Brooklyn to sell their mothers house with their estranged Aunt Stephanie.
Along the way Luna discovers she can time travel. She can time travel back to 1977 to the exact day and time her mother was raped t
Jul 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017
Finished this book last night and I can't stop thinking about it.
It was wonderful and exciting and magical and sad and I wish I could lean back and watch it as a series.

Detailed review will follow shortly. :)

Alright, here's my full review:
The Summer of Impossible Things is a book about making sacrifices for the people you love.

The most beautiful part of the book is, that it’s such a wonderful and heart-breaking story of a daughter’s love for her mother. There are so many stories about all the
Oct 21, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Shirley Revill
Nov 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book the first I have ever read by this author and it definitely won't be the last.
It really made me wonder what anyone of us would do if we could go back through time to be with someone we loved and lost.
Would we want to return to the present time and leave them behind. Maybe it would be hard not to cry when we see the person we loved so much. If we went back before we where even born and we are a stranger to the person we loved so very much.
Maybe we could alter things in the past
A really great book! This book really is the whole package. It contains romance, suspence, sisterhood, the love of a mother and even bit of comedy. I really don't get how a book like this, doesn't get more attention but other YA novels that are so unoriginal and cheesy get whole movie made out of them! So much better than I had anticipated😊💟
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
Find all my book reviews, plus fascinating author interviews, exclusive guest posts and book extracts, on my blog:

10 Things I Loved About...The Summer of Impossible Things

1.How we see the power and immutability of love played out before our eyes – romantic love, maternal love, love of friends and community: “Love outlasts even death. It’s present in every moment, even those filled with darkness; it’s never exhausted, it never gives up or wavers. It’s the
Jun 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, sci-fi, romance
Confession time- I purely wanted to read this book based on the fabulous, classy cover. I love it! ❤ My thanks to Netgalley and Ebury Press for providing me a review copy.

Beautiful and ugly, romantic and heartbreaking, possible and impossible. The Summer of Impossible Things explores it all.

Watching my mother’s face for the first time since the night she died, I am altered. I am unravelled and undone – in one instant becoming a stranger in my own skin.

A mother has died, leaving behind two heartb
Tracy Fenton
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Firstly, my thanks to the publisher, Netgalley and Rowan Coleman for the advance copy. I will admit to not reading the blurb before starting this book, so I wasn’t sure what to expect except if Rowan had written it – I was bound to love it. The Summer of Impossible Things is basically a book about making sacrifices for the people you love. I admit to only reading one other time travel book before (11.22.63 by Stephen King) so this isn’t a topic I know much about, but what I do know is how the b ...more
Julie Cohen
It’s a gorgeous, rapturous novel, intensely atmospheric. Reading it, I was transported back to Brooklyn in the summer of 1977, with the heat and music and shadows and disco. It was like watching a film and stepping right into it. The stakes are so high for Luna and her family and the rug-pulling moment, near the end, nearly took my breath away. I think my favourite part about it, though, was that it’s a beautiful and heart-wrenching story of a daughter’s love for her mother. We so often read sto ...more
Stacey (prettybooks)
I was fortunate to get a copy of The Summer of Impossible Things at my first ever Lush Book Club. It was a wonderful evening, full of bookish chat, Lush bath bombs, and delicious cupcakes. I was unfamiliar with the story up until the event – that's what's so great about the book club! – and it has taken me a while to pick it up because I have Too Many Books (as my family keep telling me), but this summer I was determined to read it. And so I met Luna, our time-travelling protagonist, and her sis ...more
Mar 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gosh, where to start with The Summer of Impossible Things? An amazing setting - 1970s Brooklyn. Wonderful characters - in the shape of slightly socially awkward Luna and her loving, recovering addict sister, Pea. Not forgetting their wise Brooklyn landlady, Mrs Finkle. I already know this will be one of my favourite books of the year. It's the kind of novel I'm keen to press on/discuss with friends, that I'll remember long after I've finished reading. It's about love and hurt and time travel and ...more
Feb 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A magical story quite unlike anything I have read before. If you could go back in time would you change anything? I cannot think of anything significant in my life that I would really want to change but this book certainly makes you think. Brings 1970s Brooklyn to life.
Renita D'Silva
Apr 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this wonderful, hopeful, sensitive and heartwarming story.
Now, I just want to watch The Lakehouse.
Jul 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Book reviews and more on

This is a really special book; it's one that made me think and made me cry, ultimately leaving me pondering the story after I'd finished it.

From the brilliant characters - hugely likable Luna and sister, dad and mum, as well as those around her in both the present day narrative and the one situated in the past - to the poignant, wistful feeling of possibly being able to change the past... everything comes together in The Summer of Impossible Things to
Oct 10, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
With echoes of the film ‘Back to the Future’, this particular time-travelling journey takes us back to the Seventies and the whole ‘summer of love’ scene with its disco music, drugs and sexual-freedom.

A family mystery drama, combining romance and SiFi , with themes of depression, suicide, alcohol and drug addiction, would not seem to have much chance of delivering a feel-good factor - but other reviewers here give it rave reviews, find it uplifting, and even suggest it as perfect holiday-reading
May 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, netgalley
I absolutely loved The Summer of Impossible things by Rowan Coleman, it was a fabulous book. The chance to go back in time to change something that has gone wrong, is something I think a lot of people would like to do. The story had me hooked from the beginning. The characters were interesting and likeable. I did not want to put the book down. This is a book I will read again and again. I would like to thank NetGalley for my e-copy in exchange for an honest review.

Oct 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was great. It was a bit confusing, but I found that the mix of character development, scenes in the past, and action moments were a perfectly congregated to create a compelling book. I highly recommend it.
Mar 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
What if you could change just one thing in the past of someone you love?
I was so lucky to be approved by NetGalley for a preview copy of this book, I absolutely loved it - it's already my best read so far this year and it could well be my favourite book of 2017.
It does require a bit of imagination, you have to travel back in time to 1977, but it's worth the stretch and if you loved the Time Traveler's Wife then you'll love this too.

Luna and her younger sister, Pia, are devastated by the death of
Joanne Robertson
That line in the blurb for this book “If you could change the past, would you?” really did evoke so many conflicting emotions for me as I (like many others I suspect!) have often wondered what my life would have been like were I able to go back in time and make different decisions. So initially I had put off reading The Summer of Impossible Things due to its subject matter but having seen some sumptuous reviews from others (who are always recommending I try this author) I decided to treat myself ...more
Jul 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I'd turned the final page of The Summer of Impossible Things I felt as though my heart had been ripped out, screwed up and thrust back into my chest. This story consumed me, the characters became my companions, the setting is wonderful, the writing is exquisite, I felt as though I was living the story, alongside Luna and Pea, and of course, with Michael.

So, I'll admit that when I discovered that Rowan Coleman's latest book was a time-travel story, I felt a tiny bit scared. I wasn't sure th
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I love time-travel stories, so was looking forward to this book. It was easy to get in to, but for me it lacked emotional depth. Luna was surprisingly dense for someone who was supposed to be an expert in quantum physics. She just accepted things without questioning the whys or hows. The writing style was too frothy - the serious issues (rape, murder) were trivialised. I guessed the plot twist half way through. I did like Michael, but because of Luna chopping and changing timelines, I felt the l ...more
Feb 05, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Everyone deserves to read a book that is (relatively) free of grammatical, spelling and other proofing errors. This book is an insult to every reader for its complete lack of editing, leading to a sloppily-presented story throughout.

I was so enraged by the errors - often multiple mistakes on each page - that I nearly didn't finish. And I always finish.

My advice? No. Just no.
Rachel Gilbey
Jun 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Easily the most accomplished and impressive book that Rowan Coleman has ever written.

With every will in the world I was wasn't expecting to even like the book, and it was only due to it being written by an author that I greatly admire that I was willing to give it a go.

Let me explain, I like my fiction incredibly contemporary and always worry if I know in advance there is any history in the book, I am also very skeptical and knowing that there was a time travel element in the book worried me t
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Rowan Coleman lives with her husband, and five children in a very full house in Hertfordshire. She juggles writing novels with raising her family which includes a very lively set of toddler twins whose main hobby is going in the opposite directions. When she gets the chance, Rowan enjoys sleeping, sitting and loves watching films; she is also attempting to learn how to bake.

Rowan would like to li

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