Friday, June 28, 2013

Nantucket Blue

Book:  Nantucket Blue
Author:  Leila Howland
Publisher:  Disney Hyperion
Date:  Available now
Source:  Publisher via Netgalley
My grade:  A

For Cricket Thompson, a summer like this one will change everything. A summer spent on Nantucket with her best friend, Jules Clayton, and the indomitable Clayton family. A summer when she’ll make the almost unattainable Jay Logan hers. A summer to surpass all dreams.

Some of this turns out to be true. Some of it doesn’t.

When Jules and her family suffer a devastating tragedy that forces the girls apart, Jules becomes a stranger whom Cricket wonders whether she ever really knew. And instead of lying on the beach working on her caramel-colored tan, Cricket is making beds and cleaning bathrooms to support herself in paradise for the summer.

But it’s the things Cricket hadn’t counted on--most of all, falling hard for someone who should be completely off-limits--that turn her dreams into an exhilarating, bittersweet reality.

A beautiful future is within her grasp, and Cricket must find the grace to embrace it. If she does, her life could be the perfect shade of Nantucket blue. (Book cover and description from

Initial impression
Wow!  That was really good!

Cover story
Booooooo!!!!  I hate kissing covers!  They are so cliché! And make a book with some substance seem like a bad romance novel.  I like the title though.  Just get rid of the couple.

What’s the Story?
So, Cricket has a best friend, Jules, who comes from a wealthy family.  Cricket doesn’t, but they seem to not care about it.  And this summer, Jules has invited to Cricket to join her family in their summer home on Nantucket!  But all they plans fall apart when Jules’ mom suddenly dies and for reasons unbeknownst to Cricket, Jules pulls away from her.  Cricket decides that she is going to Nantucket anyway because her friend needs her
 This is where I need to stop and talk about Cricket and Jules.  I had a hard time liking either one of them at first.  Eventually, I grew to love Cricket, but I think Jules was a spoiled, catty mean girl who did not deserve Cricket’s friendship.  And I got really upset with Cricket for just laying down like a door mat and letting Jules run right over her.  Luckily, this is a coming-of-age novel and Cricket learns to stand on her own 2 feet, but for a while?  Yeah, I thought I was going to have to slap some sense into her.

So Cricket arranges this job to be a nanny with a really wealthy family on Nantucket, but when she arrives, the job has fallen through.  That’s how she ends up cleaning toilets and changing sheets in a small inn on Nantucket.  But that inn is a lifesaver!  The people at the inn are so wonderful and those characters saved Cricket, and me, from the obnoxious Jules with Cricket as her poor puppy dog.

Liz is probably the best of these inn characters.  She is also a maid at the inn and she befriends Cricket and teaches how to be more assertive.  Liz kicks butt!!  Gavin is the manager and George is the writer staying at the inn.  He and Cricket develop a friendship and he helps her mature in a totally different way, trusting her to help with his book and showing her that she is intelligent and capable.

The romance in this book was awesome sauce!  I liked Zach from the moment he showed up and I never understood what Cricket saw in Jay Logan.  The love story was so well-written (well, the whole novel was) that it was one of those books that gave you butterflies in your stomach every time the cute boy showed up!!

I’ve never been to Nantucket, but now I am dying to go.  I have spent some time in New England since my husband is from Massachusetts, and I loved all the small details with New England references. (Del’s rocks!)  I think I am probably going to look for some vacation places in Nantucket for next year…..if there are any for us regular folks, that is!

I really thought that this was a well-written coming-of-age summer novel.  Cricket really grew and matured as a character.  The secondary characters were wonderful and the romance was swoon-worthy.  This novel explores family relationships, friendships, first loves, independence and finding oneself and it manages to pull all of it off beautifully.  And in a beautiful setting as well.  I highly recommend that you pick this one up!

The Soundtrack (I may have gone a bit overboard with this one….)

Soak Up the Sun by Sheryl Crow

Summer Love by We the Kings

The Beach by All Time Low

Thunder by Boys Like Girls

Summer’s Almost Gone by The Doors

Thank You by Simple Plan

Honey and the Bee by Owl City

First Time by Lifehouse

The Final Grade
My final grade for this book is an A.  I love it when characters grow and mature and arrive at the end of the book as better people.  And when it happens over a summer in Nantucket?  Even better! This book has a good story, good characters and a fabulous setting.  What more could you ask for?

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  I received no compensation, financial or otherwise, for this review.  Not even a postcard of Nantucket!

No comments:

Post a Comment