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Summer of ‘69

The significant historical events of 1969 are uniquely interwoven into the personal lives of the Levin family.



Summer of ‘69 is a family saga centered on four siblings. The mother Kate Levin has taken to drinking after her only son, Tiger is drafted and sent to Vietnam. Blair, the eldest sibling is pregnant with twins and escapes to Nantucket while her astrophysicist husband Angus, is consumed by his work on the the Apollo space launch. Middle sister Kirby, is spreading her wings on Martha’s Vineyard this summer after getting arrested for protesting and a recent breakup with a married man. Jessie is 13, and the youngest sibling and facing puberty. She has a crush on Pick, the grandson of the family’s longtime caretaker and is consumed with her brother’s absence.


The Summer of ‘69 happens to be a significant time in the personal life of author Elin Hildebrand. That was the summer that she and her brother were born. This story serves as a historical capsulation of the significant events from that summer. The Apollo 11 mission, Chappaquiddick, Woodstock and the Vietnam war are all referenced in the book. Each of these events are interwoven into the personal lives of members of the Levin family. An interesting twist on the historical fiction genre.

The story is that of a privileged-family summer drama. The writing was good and this just may make a nice beach read if you are looking some something light and breezy. But you may find yourself easily distracted by the sand, the sun and the waves. The rock-and-roll era of the day is given a nod through the themed chapter titles which are drawn from songs popular at the time like: Born to Be Wild, Magic Carpet Ride, White Rabbit, and a Whiter Shade of Pale.

I listened to the audible edition of the story and enjoyed the narration.

Publisher Little Brown/ Hachette Audio

Published June18, 2019

Narrated Erin Bennett


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