Summer Sleep-Away (book review)

Summer Sleep-Away was written by Ofer Aronskind.  I received a copy of Summer Sleep-Away as well as compensation. All opinions in this review are my own.

About the book:


Summer Sleep-Away is a tale of a young boy’s first summer going off to sleep-away camp. Far from home, separated from his family and not knowing a soul, Mattie Kleinfeld is scared, homesick and cries himself to sleep. But soon the tears give way to new friends and fantastic adventures. Mattie goes hiking and fishing. He sails and swims and participates in team sports. But it is not the canoe trips or the overnights that set this summer apart; it is not even his first girlfriend. It is a clue that he and his pals stumble upon that leads them to the adventure of a lifetime, to a vast treasure and to a window that sheds light on Mattie’s unique background.






My review:

I read this whole book today.  I just loved it.  It had me really wishing I had gone to a sleep away camp when I was 12.

Summer Sleep-Away is just such a great coming of age type of story.  It has me thinking of Stand By Me.  Not the story... but the feeling of the 4 boys bonding over an experience.  About one summer being like nothing else.  Their whole life, there whole self just being in that time.  Mattie is in this time of his life where he is just on this verge of everything happening.  He's this awkward shy boy just figuring out who his is and how he fits.  The experiences he has, and the people he meets, during this one summer really help shape who he is.  It's amazing to think of how at 12 you think everything and everyone are SO important and you'll never be able to live without them.  I look back and I still feel like those teen friendships... and the adults that affected my life... are still so big in my memory.  I may not be connected with those people... but in my memory they're still important.  Meaningful.  This book really captured that.

Absolutely a book that I would give to my girls to read as they get a little older.

About the author:

Ofer Aronskind was born in Tel Aviv, Israel and came to the United States at the age of six. He grew up in Little Neck, Queens, on the outskirts of New York City. He attended SUNY Albany then took a year off after college where he spent the year in Los Angeles writing screenplays. The following year he came back to NY to attend St. John’s University School of Law and graduated in 1989. He went to work at the law firm of Weil Gotshal & Manges as a real estate attorney and worked there until 1997. He now lives in Short Hills, New Jersey with his three sons and is a real estate investor. New Jersey resident Ofer Aronskind remembers what it was like to be 12 years old: the challenges of middle school, making new friends, attending summer camp for the first time, having your first crush. By drawing on events from his life, as well as those of his three teenage sons, he has been able to vividly recreate some of life’s most memorable experiences in his young-adult novels.

Ofer’s primary goal is to write books that young adults will want to read. His writing frequently draws upon his own life experiences, as well as those of his sons. His first two books, Summer Sleep-Away and That Same Summer, are loosely based on adventures and anecdotes from summer camp that his family operated in the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts.