If you’re anxiously awaiting the second season of the popular adaptation, then you absolutely must read the original The Summer I Turned Pretty books in order. The trilogy has an abundance of tropes that make these books so beloved. There is a love triangle, the hints of forbidden romance, first love, and first heartbreak.
Jenny Han wrote the popular and best-selling trilogy and is also at the helm of the Amazon adaptation. While there were changes between the first book and the first season, Han is the brains behind it all. Han is the co-creator, executive producer, co-showrunner, and writer of the show.
These books are full of quintessential summer fun in the sun and the blush of first love.
The Summer I Turned Pretty Books in Order
It’s a relatively simple task to read The Summer I Turned Pretty books in order. That’s because the publication order is the same as the chronological order for this trilogy. While you could read the first book as a standalone, the best reading experience will be to read the series as a trilogy.
This will follow Belly and the Fisher brothers through each consecutive summer. This reading order will make the most sense to follow along with the ebb and flow of first love.
The first book begins with Belly experiencing the ups and downs of love and heartbreak for the first time. It all takes place in the summer house at Cousins Beach that her family shares with the Fisher family.
Belly has had feelings for Conrad for a long time, but this is the first summer things are promising to flourish into something more. But to complicate matters, his brother Jeremiah, also Belly’s close friend, is developing romantic feelings for her too.
- The Summer I Turned Pretty (2009)
- It’s Not Summer Without You (2010)
- We’ll Always Have Summer (2011)
About the TV Show
Amazon threw its weight behind this summer rom-com by renewing it for a second season before the first even aired. The first season premiered in 2022. After signing on for the first season and its subsequent success, Han signed an exclusive deal with Amazon for the adaptations moving forward.
This will keep Han at the helm of the show as the core part of the creative and executive team. But that’s not to say the first season was a direct page-to-screen adaptation.
The first season saw subtle changes to the characters and moments of plot. Han viewed writing the screenplay as a way to update the book for the current day. The first book was published more than a decade ago.
The second season is anticipated to premiere in the summer of 2023 after filming wrapped in November 2022. However, given the changes that Han made in the first season to help the book work best for the screen, she did tease in December 2022 that there might be changes in this next season as well. Despite the possible changes, it will be based on the second novel.
One such change will be the introduction of a new character. Again though, Han is the one who is making all these changes. So, fans should know that the adaption is in the best hands possible for an adaptation that is true to the source material.
Lola Tung will return as Isabel “Belly” Conklin, Christopher Briney as Conrad Fisher, and Gavin Casalegno as Jeremiah Fisher. Kyra Sedgwick will join the cast for the second season.
About Jenny Han
Jenny Han says that as a child she never felt that she could idealize about a far-off dream job. Her parents were immigrants and worked blue-collar jobs, so Han imagined she would follow suit with a practical profession. Despite this, she says she was always a writer and writing stories in her notebooks.
She has found great success in telling her stories to a wider audience, both through the pages of a book and on screens around the world. Her hope was that adults watching the adaptation of her book would reminisce about those lived experiences when they were young. Meanwhile, younger audience will feel a kinship with Belly.
It was, however, a dream to have Taylor Swift tracks heavily feature throughout the first season. Han wrote the books listening to Swift’s music, so the themes parallel quite well.
In addition to The Summer I Turned Pretty books in order, Han is also the author of another popular young adult romance series: To All The Boys I Loved Before. This series also had a popular and successful adaptation, as well as a spin-off in the works.
While Han is aware that fans may not be the biggest fan of changes being made from book to screen, she felt it was important to take the chance to update the books. As well, Han was closer to Belly’s age when she first wrote the books, but Han is now the age that Belly’s mother is in the novels.
A Summary of The Summer I Turned Pretty Books in Order
Now that you know all that there is to know about the adaptation, let’s discuss the original The Summer I Turned Pretty books in order. Since this is only a trilogy, each book ties into the previous quite significantly. So, we have tried to keep spoilers to a minimum in this summary section, just in case you haven’t yet read these books.
1. The Summer I Turned Pretty
Belly measures her life in summers. Everything good, everything magical happens between the months of June and August. Winters are simply a time to count the weeks until the next summer, a place away from the beach house, away from Susannah, and most importantly, away from Jeremiah and Conrad.
They are the boys that Belly has known since her very first summer. They have been her brother figures, her crushes, and everything in between. But one summer, one terrible and wonderful summer, the more everything changes, the more it all ends up just the way it should have been all along.
2. It’s Not Summer Without You
Last year, all of Belly’s dreams came true and the thought of missing a summer in Cousins Beach was inconceivable. But like the rise and fall of the ocean tide, things can change — just like that. Suddenly the time she’s always looked forward to most is something she dreads.
And when Jeremiah calls to say Conrad has disappeared, Belly must decide how she will spend this summer: Chasing after the boy she loves, or finally letting him go.
3. We’ll Always Have Summer
Belly has only ever been in love with two boys, both with the last name Fisher. And she thinks she knows which one is her soulmate. But there is a niggling of doubt.
For while one brother has captured her heart and attention for the last two years, the other has not gotten over the mistake he made when he let Belly go. When things begin to look serious, he realizes that it’s now or never. He must tell Belly he loves her, or lose her for good.
Belly must finally confront her feelings for Jeremiah and Conrad and face a truth she has possibly always known: She will have to break one of their hearts.
While this is a short series with only three books, it is one that has captured the hearts and imaginations of thousands. If you’re looking for an escapist read, The Summer I Turned Pretty books in order will transport you to the idyllic Cousins Beach. Han will bring the smell and sound of the shoreline in a quaint coastal town to you through the pages of her books.