There are many changes between Jenny Han’s YA novels and the Prime Video series The Summer I Turned Pretty. Some are meant to create a more gripping plot for TV, but some are simply updates to make the characters feel more well-rounded. One of these changes is the addition of queer characters to the story. One of Susannah’s sons, Jeremiah, is straight in the books but is openly gay on the show. Gavin Casalegno plays the teen with such boundless enthusiasm that it’s easy to see why Belly and Conrad both fall for him.
Laurel, Susannah’s sister, is also gay on the show, and her relationship with Belly is strained. She’s boy crazy and seems shallow, but by We’ll Always Have Summer she appears to have matured a bit. She tries desperately to pair Belly with both Steven and Jeremiah (and their twin brother, Jesse), but eventually ends up fighting them both off because she’s determined to have the perfect match.
Jeremiah, portrayed by Gavin Casalegno, is a bisexual character on the show. He is the life of the party and incredibly flirty. He is not afraid to express his feelings and talks openly about the girls he’s dated and boys he’s kissed. This makes him an attractive option for Belly, especially considering she reveals to Conrad that she has been seeing Jeremiah behind his back. It’s an important addition to the story, as it shows that not all teens are straight and not all LGBTQ people are bisexual.