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Summer of Salt

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  6,761 ratings  ·  1,613 reviews
Practical Magic meets Nova Ren Suma’s Imaginary Girls and Laura Ruby’s Bone Gap in this lush, atmospheric new novel by acclaimed author Katrina Leno.

A magic passed down through generations. An island where strange things happen. A summer that will become legend.

Georgina Fernweh waits impatiently for the tingle of magic in her fingers—magic that has touched every woman in h
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by HarperTeen
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Alyssa Thomas Yes, there is LGBTQ+ romance elements. The main character, Georgie, is a lesbian. Her crush is attracted to multiple genders. Her best friend is aro/a…moreYes, there is LGBTQ+ romance elements. The main character, Georgie, is a lesbian. Her crush is attracted to multiple genders. Her best friend is aro/ace. The magic is more witchy vibes. (less)
This question contains spoilers... (view spoiler)
emma zackarina.reads
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Average rating 4.02  · 
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 ·  6,761 ratings  ·  1,613 reviews

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“Of all the stories about my family, the Fernweh women and the island of By-the-Sea, there are two that no one will ever forget. One is the story of how my sister, Mary, and I were born. And the other is the story of the summer we turned eighteen. This summer.”

This was nothing short of a beautiful delight to read. This was moving, and powerful, and magical, and sweet, yet also heartbreaking. This reads like a mix between Girl Made of Stars and The Wicked Deep, and if you love either
Oct 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
a good, accidental read.
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
Re-read 1/29/19: Finished my re-read of this on the plane home from ALA this morning and idk what it is about reading on planes but it makes everything feel EVEN MORE EMOTIONAL? This book is fantastic and I still love it so damn much. SO MUCH.

Original read 8/6/18: I cannot even begin to tell you guys how much I loved this book. I went into it thinking it was going to be a fun, queer contemporary romance with some whimsical elements, and while it did feature all of those things, it was SO MUCH MO
chan ☆
Jan 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to chan ☆ by: Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
not at all what i expected, but twice as lovely

i'm going to be frank with you, going into this i expected magical realism and rape. that's the two things i had heard about this book. so i kept putting off reading it.

and yes, this book does have both of those things but it has a lot more. the first thing i noticed when reading was the way i immediately felt like i was in By The Sea. katrina leno doesn't rely on overly purple prose but even in the dead of winter i felt like i was in this small mag
still waiting to be magically transported to the world of this book.

full review:



Dear universe,

I filed a formal request to leave this reality and move into the world of this book nearly three months ago, and yet here I am, still here.

So what’s the deal.

This reality is fine and all, but if given the option (and I am choosing to give myself the option), I would much rather live in an island world of beautiful ocean landscapes and lovely giant
C.G. Drews
I always expect a beautifully magical time when it comes to a Leno book. 😍And actually excuse me while I sit here all starry-eyed, but this was EXACTLY as beautiful and magical as I hoped. (Although I think my favourite Leno book is always going to be Everything All at Once because BOOKS. And ANXIETY. Basically the most relatable thing ever.)

This one is slightly more magicy than the others, with a family living on an island who actually do downright witchy things like float and turn into birds
Oct 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I really really enjoyed this, it was my ideal book setting with beautiful atmospheric writing.
If you liked practical magic, you’ll love this.
Whitney Atkinson
4.5 stars

New favorite!!! What this book lacked in its predictability and simplicity, it made up for in gorgeous writing, tangible characters, and enchanting world. The best way I can describe this book is Miss Peregrines meets Second Chance Summer, and I love that the magical elements of this were subtle but added just enough of a surreal element to make your head spin--in a good way, of course.

I LOVED the relationship in this book from beginning to end. Georgie's reactions to Prue were so whol
Kayla Dawn
Sep 01, 2018 rated it liked it
3,5* - Awesome atmosphere, quite a unique premise and a VERY IMPORTANT MESSAGE.
(Even though the sentence "Men are always killing things" is definitely too much for me. Please stop hating on man for the sake of feminism, that's not really what it's about)

BUT it was way too short! Especially the last quarter felt very rushed and a little overdone. Everything happened so fast and that just made it feel less real and overdramatic.
The characters could've used a little more depth as well, they were
joanna ☽ the little brown fairy
"Are you happy at all?" she asked tentatively.
"Of course I'm happy. Why wouldn't I be happy?"
"Oh, I don't know. Sometimes you just find reasons not to be."

4 stars for a beautifully written and enchanting book.

Summer of Salt is the magical, whimsical story of falling in love, two twins, and a summer unlike any before. It focuses on a story passed down through generations, on birds-that-might-not-be-birds, on the magic and darkness that lurks just beneath the island's peaceful waves. With insp
may ➹
fitting that my first read of 20biteen features the softest, purest romance between two girls!
3.75 stars!

TW: theme of sexual assault (no graphic descriptions)

I read this in less than 24 hours. This was a lovely little magical realism (though not as heavy on the purple prose as others I’ve read) featuring an island town, a family of magical women, and the last summer before college. Our main character is lesbian and many of her friends range the queer spectrum from bi to aroace. This had a firmer grasp on the plot than other magical realisms I’ve read, but I felt it could have used more
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
This was just such a ‘me’ book. It was exactly what I wanted to read, and I absolutely loved it.
April (Aprilius Maximus)
Oct 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites, 2019
“On the island of By-the-Sea you could always smell two things: salt and magic.”

representation: lesbian mc (on-page), aroace side character (on-page), bisexual characters (on-page), poc side characters, twins.

[trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers]

✧・゚: *✧・゚:* 4 . 5 s t a r s *:・゚✧*:・゚✧

Wow, what an impactful book. From the very start I was drawn in. The atmospheric setting, the characters, the subtle hint of magic - it was a recipe for success and l
Katrina Leno
Sep 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Feels like this would make a great movie, someone should call Hollywood.
Julie Zantopoulos
I'm so so thankful to my bookish friends who told me I had to read this book, you weren't wrong. This was a beautiful book with sexual fluidity and representation in it is often lacking in magical realism/witchy reads.

"I think a person can be home, sometimes, just as much as a place or a house can."

Chelsea from Chelseadolling reads described it as a mash-up of The Wicked Deep and The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender which are two of my favorite books. It was 100% just that, only wi
Lea (drumsofautumn)
Summer of Salt is an incredibly atmospheric book that makes you feel like you're right there with the characters!

“On the island of By-the-Sea you could always smell two things: salt and magic.”

What had initially convinced me to pick this book up was the f/f romance. I'm normally not that into any kind of "witch" stories and don't read much fabulism anymore. But something about this book reached out to me.
And it was absolutely wonderful. I liked the subtle magic so much. The fabulism
Dannii Elle
Georgina Fernweh is a painfully ordinary teenage girl who comes from a long line of extraordinary women. Her mother can create magical concoctions to heal most ailments, her twin sister is often found hovering inches above the ground, and one of her ancient ancestors may or may not be a 300-year-old bird that returns to their remote island every summer for a brief two-month period. This bird is responsible for a busy, if brief, tourist season and keeping the year-round island inhabitants prosper ...more
This was a lovely, cute magical book. I typically don't read a lot of young adult fiction anymore, especially those that involve magical realism. It's not usually my thing, but I've been hearing such high praise about this book and the premise sounded interesting enough so I decided to give it a ago, and I ended up really enjoying this. This is a short and sweet novel that takes place over a summer on an island that follows this family of women - and it packed quite an unexpected emotional punch ...more
this book is the embodiment of waves crashing into each other. you know when you’re standing on a beach, and you’re watching a wave make its way to you, and you think to yourself: “i think i should stand here and let myself be taken by the sea.” and that’s exactly what happens by the end of this book. as the last words wash over you, you realize what they mean by the act of drowning: it’s the act of escaping.

i escaped to a small little island over the course of this book, and i really don’t wan
May 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtq-plus, 2020, wlw
this book landed somewhere between soft, beautiful and delicately creepy. it was infused with love and magic, summer-y, rainy atmosphere, storms and melancholy. the writing felt like a warm, comforting hug. there were girls falling in love, gorgeous friendships, a witchy family and lots of amazing women. i'm glad that the romance, while very nice, wasn't the main focus. i have to warn, though, that it got pretty serious towards the end, but the difficult topic was handled with empathy and compas ...more
Jul 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Summer of Salt is a slow-paced, atmospheric contemporary fantasy story with a dash of mystery. It follows Georgina, a Fernweh girl who, unlike the rest of the women in her family, hasn't developed her powers yet. While I thought it was far from a perfect book, I can say that I liked the half that I read while on the beach immensely more than the other, so I do still kind of see it as a perfect summer book. It's a quick, nostalgic novel to read while you have salt on your skin and waves in front ...more
Es Summer
"She was born for the smell of water, for the way it sank into your bones, stained your skin, dyed your blood a deep, salty blue."

This novel reads like a force of nature.
The lyrical prose combined with the love for nature makes it very descriptive and surrealistic.
I think the idea of the story was interesting. I like magical fiction that is written so realistically and this novel is exactly that with a lot details about daily life during summer time.
It kinda reminded me of We Were Liars. I
lucky little cat
Yet another Goodreads-hyped disappointment. Arrrrrgh. Moralistic quasi-feminist gothic tale emerges as one big unholy Alice Hoffman/ Nancy Drew mashup.that's not fish I'm smelling
You're going to need a fresher plot.

No cliché is omitted: we get witchy twins (one gay, one straight, one hot, one not); eeevil stalking the woods; an ultra-wise ultra-witchy mom; cursed ancestor women; and back-to-back wild storms all on one tiny eastern-seaboard backwater resort island. We also get a love story, a (view spoiler)
Reading_ Tam_ Ishly

"Very magicky."


One of the best written young adult book.

I guess I fell for the characters a little too much than what I had expected. I totally love, love, love the writing. It's so well done!
Once you start reading this book, there's no way you would put it down saying it's going nowhere and nothing much is happening because so many things are happening in this small fantastical island.

The plot revolves around two teenage girls who are supposed to have magical powers sooner or
Amelia Oswald
This is just beautiful. It reminded me of Girl Made of Stars. But this book is laced with magic to tell the tale.
I think a person can be a home, sometimes, just as much as a place or a home can

Don't be tricked by the cover, it isn't cute as it looks.
Unlike Katrina Leno’s previous books, the magical realism in Summer of Salt isn’t subtle. The magic in this book is evident right from the beginning and plays a central role in the story. What isn’t evident from the beginning, however, is the important and powerful message this book has to share. It would have been a sweet, diverse, wonderfully relatable coming-of-age story regardless, but Katrina Leno doesn’t leave it at that. She wanted her book to mean something, and oh, did she succeed. This ...more
Karima chermiti

Trigger warning : Rape, Animal cruelty, Slut shaming

4 “We loved with a love that was more than love” stars

A book about magic, atmospheric island and complicated siblings relationships told in a beautiful and hypnotic writing style and yet it was lacking, something was missing or maybe was badly executed?

Summer of salt follows our main character, Georgina and her twin sister Mary as they navigate their final summer in their home island before they leave to college. Georgina and Mary Fernweh belon
"On the island of By-the-Sea you could always smell two things: salt and magic."

I can already feel that this is gonna be an Unpopular Opinion Time 🐸☕️

TW: rape, slut shaming

This was…just not my thing.

First though, lemme point out the diversity in this book:
lesbian main character
aroace side character
bi side character

If I gotta be honest, though, apart from the very appreciated diversity, the characters themselves felt rather…two-dimensional? They weren’t captivating and special.

Throughout the r
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