Summer of '76

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More About This Title Summer of '76


In this intense novel of secrets and simmering passions the acclaimed author of Glasshopper and Hurry Up and Wait takes us back to the legendary heat wave of 1976. It’s the start of one of the hottest summers on record, with soaring temperatures and weeks without rain; the summer of Abba, T-Rex, David Bowie, and Demis Roussos; of Martinis, cheesecake, and chicken chasseur; of the Montreal Olympics and the Notting Hill riots—the summer Big Ben stopped dead. Luke Wolff is about to turn 18 and is all set to enjoy his last few months at home on the Isle of Wight before leaving for college. Life is looking good; his job at a holiday camp promises new friendships, even the possibility of romance, and his parents are too preoccupied with their own problems to worry much about their son’s growing independence. But with windows and doors constantly open and life increasingly lived outside, secrets become hard to hide. As Luke listens in, his parents’ seemingly ordered existence comes unstuck. Soon the community is gripped by scandal, and everything Luke thought he knew about friendship and family is turned on its head. Winner of the Mail on Sunday Novel Competition, Isabel Ashdown once again unravels the complexity of her characters’ lives—and reveals what really lies beneath the surface.


Isabel Ashdown is the author of Flight; Glasshopper, which won the Mail on Sunday Novel Competition; and Hurry Up and Wait, which was listed as one of Amazon's Customer Favorites for Kindle in 2011. Isabel was 2013-14 Writer in Residence at the University of Brighton.