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The Myth of Perpetual Summer

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  1,990 ratings  ·  437 reviews
From the national bestselling author of Whistling Past the Graveyard comes a moving coming-of-age tale set in the tumultuous sixties that harkens to both Ordinary Grace and The Secret Life of Bees.

Tallulah James’s parents’ volatile relationship, erratic behavior, and hands-off approach to child rearing set tongues to wagging in their staid Mississippi town, complicating he
Paperback, 355 pages
Published June 19th 2018 by Gallery Books
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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 ·  1,990 ratings  ·  437 reviews

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Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
5 southern family secret stars to The Myth of Perpetual Summer, my first favorite read of summer! 🌺🌺🌺🌺🌺

Set in Mississippi in the 1960s and 70s, Tallulah James’ story is memorable and haunting. Her parents have a tumultuous relationship sparked by a self-absorbed, yet bleeding-heart when it comes to social causes outside her own home, mother, and a father with an at times debilitating mental illness.

The town is always talking about the high profile Jameses, including lurid family secrets past an
Nov 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Myth of Perpetual Summer by Susan Crandall is a 2018 Gallery Books publication.

Heart wrenching southern style coming of age tale, bracketed into a touching story of eventual hope!

Mississippi during the 60s and 70s is boiling pot of tension and scrutiny. It’s the perfect backdrop for this coming of age story centered around Tallulah James and her dysfunctional southern family.

Tallulah copes as best she can in a house full of secrets and miseries. Her father exhibits the hallmark symptoms o
Diane S ☔
Jul 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.5 Tallulah James, adore the name and adore the fiesty young lady to which it belongs in this quiessentially southern novel. Mississippi, the sixties, Lulie as she is called, and her brother Griff are close, doing the best they can to take care of their two younger siblings. They do have parents, but the mother Margo is more interested in various causes, than she is in the children she bore. Their father, well let's just say he is present when he can be, but sometimes he is brought low, and som ...more
Diana | Book of Secrets
The drama of a dysfunctional Southern family plays out on the pages of THE MYTH OF PERPETUAL SUMMER, and woven in between is the tumultuous coming-of-age story of Tallulah James.

On the one hand, the writing in this book is quite beautiful. I was wrapped up in the sense of place and time the author conveyed, of Tallulah's small Mississippi hometown in the late 50s and early 60s.

There are many facets to this story, and really I wasn't sure what one was supposed to be the main focus. The book begi
There are times when a book reaches out, grabs your heart and doesn’t let it go. The Myth of Perpetual Summer is that book! 

Susan Crandall, author of the best-selling novel Whistling Past the Graveyard, captures the very essence of southern literature in her new tale, The Myth of Perpetual Summer.
Tallulah James – how typically southern is that name – was the glue that held her crumbling and decaying family together. Raised primarily by her grandmother, her parents a very dysfunctional pair who c
Karen White
Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Love, love, LOVE this book! Susan Crandall is a master at delving into family dysfunction and the human psyche. Highly recommend.
Jun 21, 2018 rated it liked it
The Myth of Perpetual Summer
Susan Crandall

Great writing and interesting characters combine
for a complex and moving coming-of-age story.


Tullulah James would be lost if it were not for her old older brother, Griff, and her Southern grandmother. Her parents are volatile and erratic and are rarely even home. Tallulah has taken personal responsibility for shielding the family‘s reputation and for raising her younger twin siblings.

Following a family death and abandonment Tullulah sets o
Janelle Janson
Jul 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you so much Gallery Books for providing my free copy of THE MYTH OF PERPETUAL SUMMER by Susan Crandall - all opinions are my own.

This is such a lovely book and Susan Crandall is a master storyteller. Set in the backdrop of Mississippi during the 1960s civil rights movement, the story centers around Tallulah James and her dysfunctional family. Tallulah returns home after seven years because her younger brother is accused of murder. Although her older brother and her grandmother were her ste
Karen R
Jun 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“I stare at the house for a few minutes, even now surprised I’m standing here, a place I thought I’d never see again. It causes a strange sense of vertigo, this collision of long-ago and now of childhood pain and adult understanding, of the unchangeable past and the possibilities of the future.” My favorite quote in The Myth of Perpetual Summer

This story tugged at my heart. Tallulah James, a precocious and thoughtful 13-year old girl grew up way too fast due to her selfish and largely absent par
Jun 13, 2018 rated it liked it
I won this book through a BookishFirst giveaway. Thank you!

Sadly, I'm going to sit this one aside for now and maybe try again at another time. I don't read a lot of historical fiction and when I do they are usually in the gothic haunted mansion variety. The pacing of this one is much slower than what I'm used to and I keep finding myself distracted every time I pick this up.

I will say the writing itself is exceptional. It's no wonder that Susan Crandall has achieved the success that she has.

Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: release-2018
5 ☆ I absolutely loved The Myth of Perpetual Summer, is one of my favorites this year! ❤️
A tender Southern coming-of-age story set in the 1960-70’s about Tallulah James’ dysfunctional family with past secrets that have plagued the James family since before her birth. Following several deaths and her brothers fiasco with local shady law enforcement she flees from the only home she’s ever known to California. Years later after arriving back home for her younger brothers trial, secrets come to ligh
Sonja Arlow
3.5 stars

“My parents loved so wildly, they destroyed each other. My father was a tormented man. My brother betrayed my trust. My mother is a self-centered hypocrite. My grandmother has secrets so dark she’d lose me rather than reveal them.”

I loved Whistling past the Graveyard and since then have read my fair share of Southern coming of age novels. So, although the first half was nice it was nothing exceptional. I was wondering if I had finally reached my threshold of Southern coming of age novel
Jun 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018
Tallulah knows that there is something not right about her family. Her Father (Drayton) has episodes of “hurricanes” and “shadows.” He is bipolar but not much is known about the illness and how to treat it in1958.

Hurricanes describe his manic phases, when he is very energized, doesn’t sleep for days and his brain races with ideas. He also can be, paranoid, obsessive and impulsively buys things they can’t afford and don’t need.

In contrast, Shadows are the depressive phases when Drayton is feelin
Cassidy (Cassidys.Bookshelf)
Jul 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2018
The Myth of Perpetual Summer is a fantastic southern fiction novel that rivals my all-time favorites like Necessary Lies, The Secret Life of Bees, and I can even see it being close to my love for The Help. The author truly takes her readers to 1960's Mississippi with her eloquent words and descriptive settings. It really felt like I was right there with the main character, Tullulah, as she grew up under very dysfunctional and heartbreaking circumstances that ended up shaping how she and her sibl ...more
Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)
May 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc
Susan Crandall's latest novel is a coming of age story set in the sixties, following the James family through small town gossip and dangerous accusations.  Tallulah James's parents have a passionate but unpredictable relationship that often takes precedence over their children.  Her father suffers from erratic behavior and whispers around town suggests he inherited this trait from his uncle George who disappeared years ago and has since been erased from the family.  Her mother's parenting could ...more
Basic B's Guide
Jun 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“My parents loved so wildly, they destroyed each other. My father was a tormented man. My brother betrayed my trust. My mother is a self-centered hypocrite. My grandmother has secrets so dark she’d lose me than reveal them. I’m afraid if I love you, you’ll destroy me.”

A coming-of-age tale reminiscent of Glass Castle. Set in Mississippi during the 60s, this book deals with mental illness, the civil rights movement, and dysfunctional family life.

Tallulah returns home after seven years, when her yo
I really enjoy Crandall’s previous work but struggled to find as much passion in this work.

The Myth Of Perpetual Summer follows a young woman named Tallulah as she comes of age during a tumultuous time in history (civil rights) and an even more difficult time for her personally.

As she grows she has to come to terms with her past, specifically, her highly dysfunctional family history, a violent crime that touches her family, and abuse.

The book had all the ingredients but for this reader it jus
Oct 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Two Things....

1. I tried so hard to love this one. It was not meant to be. The pacing of this novel was inconsistent, the plot was loaded with everything but the kitchen sink & most of the characters were icky. BUT, I plodded my way through it because it is undeniable that Susan Crandall writes beautifully.

2. I simply devoured her former book, Whistling Past the Graveyard. Read that one without hesitation.
However, I AM NOT GIVING UP ON THIS AUTHOR! Her potential is limitless.

Jun 24, 2018 rated it liked it
I started out really, really liking this book. The writing was completely on top of it's game and the story was very compelling. But it felt like the last quarter of the book was rushed and maybe not that well thought out, or maybe there just wasn't much there to work with? So what started out with a bang for me, ended with a bit of a fizz. Many thanks to the publisher for providing me with a free copy in exchange for an honest review. ...more
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely loved this book. It had a mystery throughout that kept you wondering what in the world had happened and why the main character's life was falling apart. Susan Crandall has become one of my favorite authors and I love how she develops the story and characters so beautifully they hang out with you after you've finished the book. Great fiction read! ...more
Tina Woodbury
Jul 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For all of my reviews: www.readingbetweenthepagesblog.wordpr...

I was drawn into this story from the very first chapters!

Tallulah James kneels in front of her TV and sees a mug shot. The mug shot of her brother that she has not seen in several years. They say he is a killer, but she just can’t believe that would be true. Tallulah drops everything and takes emergency time off from work and returns home. She is heading back to Lamoyne, Mississippi, the town she was born and raised in. It has been n
Amy (TheSouthernGirlReads)
Jul 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Full review to come.
Jun 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Gallery books for providing me with a free copy of The Myth of Perpetual Summer in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

This. Book. Was. So. Good! I literally hugged this book when I turn the last page. This is going to be a full out gushy review because I have not one bad thing to say about this book.

When I think about why I like to read, the only important thing that comes to mind is: love of a good story. I love to be told a good story or read a good story. The
Alyssa Nelson
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
*I received a free copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*

The Myth of Perpetual Summer is a coming of age story rife with trauma and tragedy while focusing on the bonds of family and how much it means to have a core group supporting you no matter what.

The novel has dual-narration, with one part focusing on Tallulah growing up, and then the other part focusing on present-day, when she’s returning home. While I liked this style overall, I wish some
Jul 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
I've so enjoyed reading Susan Crandall's previous novels and The Myth of Perpetual Summer was no exception. The characters are so real and well developed. I get completely caught up in their stories and think about them long after the novel ends.

Tallulah James has left her Mississippi roots long behind when she receives disastrous news about her brother that calls her to come to his rescue. As soon as she arrives back, she is bombarded with memories from her difficult childhood but she also bri
Darcia Helle
Oh, this book! I'm trying to steer away from all the cliche words, but they are what comes to mind: compelling, powerful, thought-provoking, enthralling, beautiful.

The writing is exceptional. Susan Crandall doesn't overload us with words in order to pad the pages with unnecessary filler. There wasn't a paragraph I wanted to skim or even one word I wanted to skip. Crandall gives us exactly the right words to elicit emotion, offer insight, and paint a portrait. This is the kind of book I call imm
Jun 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, arcs-review
* Thank you Gallery Books & BookishFirst for my free review copy. *

Tallulah James' childhood is not stable - her parent's relationship is volatile, their behavior is erratic, and their approach to raising their children is very hands-off. Her constants in her life are her older brother and her grandmother. After a life-changing event occurs in their family, Tallulah heads out to California and recreates herself. Seven years later she returns home when her younger brother is accused of murder, an
May 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I enjoy nothing more than a good book about the south and this was one of those books. It was about a dysfunctional family in the 60s in Mississippi. There was a little mystery, a little romance and wonderful characters to love so it was a perfect book to curl up with on a long summer evening.

Tallulah left home at 16 to try to find a more stable life. She hitchhiked to California to start over and never let anyone at home know where she was. When she heard that her brother was in jail for murder
May 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Truly could not put this one down. A deep look into the lives of a troubled family with past secrets keep coming back to haunt them. Memorable characters and a setting so realistically described that I could feel the heat of the summer days. The perfect book for the beach, pool, or comfortable chair at home.
Jun 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Called back to a past she hoped she erased, Tallulah Mae James sets her steering to the swelter of southernmost mud when news hits her of her brother’s charge of murder.

Coming from a family tightly knit, due to its loose ends, begins on a pecan plantation. The father is an undiagnosed manic-depressant professor, the mother a flighty, free-spirited activist, and their combination tends to erupt more than teenage acne. Griffin, the eldest, tries to shield Tallulah “Lulie” from the ugliness around
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Alas, the rumor is true, Susan was a dental hygienist in her previous career. However, she "retired" from that profession many years ago and has been a full-time author ever since--thanks to all of you fabulous readers.

Susan grew up in a small Indiana town, married a guy from that town, and then moved to Chicago for a while. She is pleased to say that she has been back in her hometown for many yea

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