BiSome Secrets Just Won T Stay Buried I BpThey Didn T Mean It They Didn T Mean To Hit The Boy There Was A Party, And It Was An Accidentthat Wasn T Who They Were They Were Pre Law, A Football Player, Bound For New York No One Could Know, So Barry, Julie, Helen, And Ray Swore One Another To Secrecy But Now, A Year Later, Someone Knows Julie Receives A Haunting, Anonymous Threat I Know What You Did Last Summer The Dark Lie Is Unearthed, And Before The Four Friends Know It They Need To Outsmart A Killeror They Will Be The Next To DiepLeave The Lights On When Reading This Classic Thriller This New Edition Features Modernized Text And A New Introduction By Lois Duncan, The Master Of Teen Horror One is never to old to read the classic mystery I know what you did last summer which was also a movie not a very good one and spawned many a copy c at book with a similiar premise.I first read this as a kid I am a huge fan of Louis Duncan s work and this was one of her best novels The premise is simple A group of 4 teenagers, out late one night, partying it up, hit a boy on a bike and do not stop They make a pact to keep what happened a secret.One year later, Julie James one of the members of said pact, receives a letter in the mail All it says is I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER.This book was so damn good And I sort of wish the movie spin off had not happened as they took the original premise..and it WAS original back then..and turned it into a horror slasher movie which in my opinion is unforgivable given that the original book was so readable I would have liked to see the film follow the book.What is also great are the characterizations Duncan was always so good at that You feel you know everyone from Julie to her sweet mom to Ray to Helen and her sullen sister to Barry the ultimate jock and frat boy It is short book but it demands attention and honestly if you are in your adult years and have not read it, you would most likely like it.SPOILERS Back then, twists were not an every day thing as they are now so when Duncan did a stunner of one in this book, it was actually a surprise.I have reread this a few times and I always love it Nostalgia is no doubt one reason but there is also no getting around the fact that it s a mighty fine book Read the book, skip the movie. Before it was a 90s slasher movie, I Know What You Did Last Summer was actually a novel by Lois Duncan and believe it or not, a very good one Published in 1973 and revised by the author in 2010, I had superficial issues with her decision to rebrand everything from fashion to geopolitics to telephones for the Young Adult reader of today a decision that felt financial as opposed to creative but where it matters, the book generates a terrific amount of suspense and delivers a satisfying payoff without throwing graphic violence, sex or much foul language at the reader In this sense, it s like an Alfred Hitchcock thriller with teens than slasher fare.Set in the vicinity of Silver Spring, Maryland with its mountain roads, the story begins with high school graduate Julie James getting summer off to a promising start when an acceptance letter to Smith College, the alma mater of her widowed mother, arrives in the mail Mrs James has sensed a change in her redheaded cheerleader daughter over the last year, studying harder but having less fun, breaking up with a boy named Ray Bronson, who left town about a year ago and headed to California Julie almost ignores a second letter she s received, one with no return address on the envelope The message in big block printing ominously reads I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER.We next meet Barry Cox, freshman at the local college and a football hero in his high school days whose winning ways still get the attention of the girls For this reason and others, Barry has cooled to his girlfriend of the past year, Helen Rivers, a high school dropout whose ambition and golden looks have secured her a lucrative job with Channel Five as a station rep and on air personality Helen s success seems to be the only reason Barry hasn t broken up with her and when she telephones with something important to talk with him about, he has no choice but go to her apartment complex Barry finds Julie there as well, who shares the threatening letter with the couple Making reference to a pact they made last summer, Barry blames the letter on Ray, who Helen reveals is back in town Neither of the women believe Julie s ex would do something like this The football hero offers that Julie might be getting teased about something else she did last summer Helen is not comforted by this Julie returns home to prepare for a date when she encounters Ray waiting for her While he s missed Julie, she explains that she needs to move on, haunted by a tragic accident in which the car that Barry was driving with Helen in the front passenger seat and Julie Ray in back struck a twelve year old boy on a bicycle named Daniel Gregg.Driving too fast while under the influence of a few beers and a little pot, Barry feared prosecution and fled the accident scene that night Julie s vocal plea that they go back to help the boy was opposed by Helen, who then as well as now is in love with Barry and wants to protect him Casting the deciding vote to stay silent was Ray, who at that time lacked the nerve to stand up to Barry and instead made an anonymous call to 911 Their victim died on the way to the hospital Julie shares her letter with her ex, dreading that someone else knows their secret Ray believes they should confess to the police, not breaking the pact, but dissolving it by convincing Barry and Helen to agree with them.While Julie makes a fresh start with an Iraq war veteran she s dating named Bud, Helen continues to feel distance from Barry Growing up in a low income household and sharing a bedroom with her dumpy and vindictive older sister Elsa, Helen s self made success and minor celebrity has only made her feel ostracized by her family and peers She makes a friend with a handsome new neighbor named Collie but comes close to falling apart when Barry is lured away from his frat house by a telephone call and shot His ability to walk again in doubt, Barry claims that the phone call came from Helen, who denies this By now, both Helen and Ray have received ominous messages as well.Taking the initiative, Julie and Ray go up up to Mountain Highway to visit the Greggs They meet Daniel Gregg s sister Megan, who reveals that her mother blamed herself for Daniel s death and fell ill She s convalescing in Las Lunas with her father Julie is certain that none of the Greggs could be responsible for the threats, while Ray notices a fresh coat of paint on the house and men s shirts drying on the clothesline The mystery thickens when Ray sneaks into the hospital to confront Barry about his fatal phone call He conceals the truth, which is that a caller threatened to blackmail him with photos of the accident and lured Barry into a meeting, where he was shot.Meanwhile, Mrs James has a very bad feeling about all of this Not that the feelings were foolproof and could be taken as gospel Last summer, for instance, there had been a time when she could have sworn that she felt something terrible approaching It was during a period in which Julie was seeing a great deal of Ray, and for a while Mrs James had wondered if that was it, if the young people s feelings for each other were growing too strong and would create a problem Fond as she was of Ray, she was aware of his immaturity, and she wanted another year of high school for Julie and then hopefully college The idea of an unwed pregnancy or a very young marriage was not easy for her to accept.In the 2010 revision of I Know What You Did Last Summer, Lois Duncan made a number of superficial changes to her 1973 text A few are hard to spot, like a blue pantsuit changing to blue pants and a blouse Vietnam and an antiwar demonstration are changed to Iraq and an indiscriminate campus demonstration A noticeable change is the juggling act Duncan has to do with mobile phones, which could have solved her mystery in half an hour if characters were easily able to contact each other or authorities in an emergency In the inferior revised edition, all manner of dead batteries, dropped signals or landlines still strangely in use are offered to keep the plot going.There are reasons why a novel written in the 1970s or 80s should not be revised for the Information Age, even a novel that on the surface seems to be little than a Young Adult thriller The world has changed so much in forty years that relabeling is not sufficient to pass Duncan s story off as one that could take place today The catalyst of I Know What You Did Last Summer is a boy on a bicycle being struck by a hit and run driver at ten o clock at night, plausible and effective in 1973, but today, when all bicycles have reflectors and all children are cocooned in safety gear, not to mention guarded by anxious parents who rarely let their children out of sight, this scenario feels like a stretch.This sort of reboot feels like a financial gambit than one made to improve quality of the book and I Know What You Did Last Summer is compelling enough not to need it Duncan does a wonderfully subtle job of generating tension with characters who ve committed an irrevocable crime and are wrapped so tight with guilt that the slightest tug might force them to snap This is a thriller where I was able to feel empathy not only with the protagonists, but their tormentor, who unlike the boogeyman in the derivative 1997 slasher film and its sequels, inflicts psychic violence as opposed to mostly physical The reveal in his identity, also altered for the movies, is novel as well.Duncan, who allows her teenagers some illegal substances but lets the reader imagine how much sex they ve experimented with, should be respected for writing a terrifying book without racking up dead bodies More sinister and imaginative is how Duncan keeps the teenagers alive In addition to the guilt that s been building over a year, each character is dragged into their own level of hell A sports hero view spoiler may not walk again hide spoiler Find all of my reviews at StarsWelcome to I decided to take a break from my usual selections And read listen to this oldie but goodie to celebrate my favorite time of year Spoiler Alert He s really going to murder her for being a basic white bitch After having a pretty meh time with Killing Mr Griffin during Banned Book Week, I set my expectations super low before starting this one Imagine my delight when I ended up really enjoying it The basic premise was the same group of drunken stumbly teenie boppers kill someone in a hit and run and then decide Little plot twist in the book version they didn t run over an adult instead it was a kid A year goes by when suddenly the teens start receiving notes That have them concerned their secret might get out Or worse I Know What You Did Last Summer stood the test of time surprisingly well While it has obviously been updated since its original release back in the 70s, a thorough job was done here making the modern day references effortless instead of standing out like a sore thumb It does date itself with antiquated remarks regarding things of a girly nature, but if you aren t of the easily offended variety, you can simply laugh it off as talk of the olde days of yore Although I did see the whodunit from about a football field away, there was a little something extra that I wasn t really looking for that ended up being a pretty decent bonus Fairly PG references to underage drinking and smoking pot that wouldn t pass the test with some parents for youngsters to read this Halloween season. Not the greatest film in the world and even worse of a book I Know What You Did Last Summer is so cheesy and predictable that it seems almost on purpose The characters are ridiculous caricatures of typical teens and they acted completely ridiculous at the best of times.
Lois Duncan born Lois Duncan Steinmetz was an American writer and novelist, known primarily for her books for children and young adults, in particular and some times controversially considering her young readership crime thrillers Duncan s parents were the noted magazine photographers Lois Steinmetz and Joseph Janney Steinmetz She was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but grew up in Saraso
- 198 pages
- I Know What You Did Last Summer
- Lois Duncan
- 10 April 2017 Lois Duncan