“Nantucket Blue”—A Book Review

9781423160519_p0_v2_s260x420

Nantucket Blue by Leila Howland is the most absolute perfect beach read if you are looking for something a little thought provoking. Fans of Jenny Han’s The Summer I turned Pretty trilogy are sure to love this title.

Cricket Thompson is ready to have the summer of her life in Nantucket, staying with her best friend in the world, Jules. But right before the trip, Jules’ family suffers a tragedy and Cricket finds herself uninvited to stay with them.

But Cricket is determined—determined that Jules needs her this summer more than ever, and determined that this is the summer she will make her long-time crush, Jay, hers. Thus, Cricket gets a job as a maid at an inn on the island…not quite what she had in mind, but better than stuck at home all summer babysitting a snotty kid.

The thing is, life doesn’t always go how you planned it. Jules is dealing with her own sadness and decides not to be Cricket’s friend and is pissed that Cricket showed up in Nantucket.

“It didn’t matter how good my grades were or that I’d made varsity as a freshman; it didn’t matter how carefully, how perfectly, I’d managed my popularity; it didn’t matter that I’d measured an doled out my flirtations like teaspoons of sugar—never too much to be a tease, always enough to be sweet. Jules was able to take my happiness away from me with one swift betrayal. My social life had slid from good to bad like a hockey puck across a rink. It wasn’t fair. I wanted to take her to friend court.”

Now Cricket finds herself stuck on this island for the summer, scrubbing toilets and making beds, and without a best friend. While surrounded by rich hoity-toity islanders, Cricket must learn to lead her own life and stop wishing for things that are outside of her current grasp.

 “I was wishing I were that kind of rich, the kind where people have to respect you, because that’s what money does. It makes people shut up. It means you live in the big house, throw the cool birthday parties, belong to the country club that has its own jokes, its own dances; take awesome vacations, go skiing enough to get really good at it, own the best clothes, get the green dress.”

Ultimately, this is a summer for Cricket to find herself and to find love in the most unexpected place.

“The only opinion that should matter to me was that of the girl in the mirror. For the first time it felt true. It didn’t matter what other people thought of me; it mattered what I thought of me. I’m not sure why it was at that moment that it finally sank in, except that maybe this is how wisdom works sometimes. You hear it, and some extra-smart part of your brain that you don’t even realize you have grabs it. It stays there, hidden away, until it’s needed.”

This novel kept me turning pages from the very start. I simply couldn’t put it down. Five out of five stars for this brilliant debut!

Advertisements

“The Star Shack”—A Book Review

9781402241109_p0_v1_s260x420

If you’re looking for a super quick, mindless summer beach read, The Star Shack by Lila Castle is the book for you.

Pete and Annabelle have been coming to Gingerbread beach (a beach where it rains 95% of the time) with their families since they were kids and have been inseparable since the ripe young age of 12.

The summer before their senior year in high school, things have gone terribly wrong. Pete can put up with the fact that Annabelle is a Yankee’s fan (he’s a Boston Red Sox fan all the way), but the fact that she’s totally obsessed with Astrology and “the stars aligning” is just too much for him to stomach. He just can’t move beyond Annabelle’s New Agey freak stuff any longer.

To get back at Pete, and prove to him that there is a science to reading the stars (after all, it’s been used for centuries) she dares him to open up a business with her, reading the signs for tourist to help them find their “perfect love match” based on their astrological signs. She knows that Pete absolutely cannot refuse a dare.

The book takes place over the course of one summer, told in alternating narratives. It was a quick read, and was mildly entertaining. While I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it to anyone, I didn’t hate it. I give this teen novel two out of five stars.

“Sleepaway Girls”—A Book Review

9780316017183_p0_v1_s260x420

Sleepaway Girls by Jen Calonita is an adorable and fun summer read!

Sam’s best friend has a boyfriend this summer, and Sam refuses to hang around all summer being the third wheel. So she decides to sign up to be a counselor-in-training at Whispering Pines summer camp in the New York Catskills.

Of course, what summer camp experience would be complete without the camp counselor “queen bee” who likes to give Sam hell, and a super hot crush she just can’t help but flirt with? Sam also makes friends with a group of counselor-in-training girls who label themselves “The Sleepaway Girls.” The girls have a blast all summer sneaking off and documenting their summer experiences to remember for a lifetime.

And then add to the summer experience, Cole: the playful guy who Sam becomes fast friends with.

This book was pretty much your typical mindless summer read, complete with a totally predictable plot, but it was still entertaining. I give it three out of five stars!

“Endless Summer”—A Book Review

9781442406599_p0_v2_s260x420

Endless Summer by Jennifer Echols is a stupendous summer read! It’s a collection of two summer novels: The Boys Next Door and its sequel Endless Summer.

Lori spends the entire year just waiting for her summers at the lake, where she works at her neighbors’ marina with her older brother. The pluses for working there every summer: 1) Wakeboarding everyday 2) Extra cash 3) Working on her golden summer tan 4) The Vader brothers.

Ever since Lori was a little girl, she’s had a crush on Sean Vader. The downside=he’s two years older than her and sees her as “one of the guys.” Lori has tagged along with her older brother since childhood, just to hang with Sean and Adam Vader. But Lori is determined that this is the summer Sean will notice her. She has a plan!

The plan: First, start acting and dressing more like a girly-girl. Second, start hanging out with the younger of the Vader brothers, Adam, who is her age. The hopeful outcome is that seeing her with Adam all summer will make Sean jealous, thus causing him to sweep Lori off her feet in a fit of jealousy. The fatal flaw in this otherwise brilliant and foolproof plan: Adam has an agenda of his own.

Full of romance, summer sun, and laughs, this two-in-one novel is the perfect poolside read!

I give this fun book five stars!