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Friday, May 17, 2013

Blog Tour Review & Giveaway: Nantucket Blue by Leila Howland

Publication Date: May 7, 2013
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Stand alone novel
Young Adult
Pages: 304
Genre: Contemporary, Romance

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.
*Digital galley provided by Disney Hyperion for an honest review*

It's been a really hectic week for me here between finals and packing up to go home for the summer, I was glad that I could get Nantucket Blue in for a read and get this review for the blog tour up on time.

Nantucket Blue was one of those easy reads for me. I flew through the book. Leila Howland's writing style just flowed so smoothly, made me laugh, and had me smiling. The scenery came to life and the kisses happening between Cricket and Zack sounded so soft and passionate I had been smiling during all the romantic parts. I was very satisfied with the romance in the book. The realism, the forbidden secret of dating her best friend's younger brother made this novel a little roller coaster in itself. And the way Cricket (love her name) fought to stay through everything that was thrown her way between Jules, her best friend, being mad at her; her crush, Jay, being angered and distant as well; the off-limits younger brother that she happens to be falling for; and the chambermaid job she gets in order to stay on Nantucket when Jules declines the invitation to stay with her, Cricket takes what she is given and pursues forward, building herself off the events and actions that are pushed down upon her. Her summer definitely is not boring, that's for sure.

There is just enough summer, stolen kisses, first times, and hidden diaries in this novel to make it a fun, little read in the sun. Cricket had a summer of a lifetime down in Nantucket, granted it is not the summer that I'd like to experience (Jules's mother passing away, a rift between friends, forbidden love, and unneeded drama), but it was enjoyable to watch how she would handle the situations dealt in her direction. I liked Cricket, she knew who she was, how she could handle situations on her plate (until they started to go out of control), and the relationships that she fostered between the workers at her job at the Inn, with her internship with the journalist, and the man who Cricket believes was her mother's "Lover Boy" back when she lived out in the beautiful Nantucket. 

I felt bad for the way Jules was treating Cricket during the duration of the novel, but then against there was merit to her cold nature. When Cricket stole her chance to say something about Nina, Jules's deceased mother, at her funeral because Cricket felt the need to save her speechless, distraught friend who was choking in the spotlight, I knew that had to be the reason for her anger at her best friend. If I had been sitting in one of the pews during the service, I would have felt awkward at Cricket stepping out of place and taking the words away from Jules. That was the one flaw that I found in Cricket, she felt that she always needed to save Jules, when she really didn't need to be saved. It felt like Cricket was trying to take over the mother spot that her own mother had left behind, and I started to feel pity for Cricket.

Final Summation: Nantucket Blue took me by surprise. Contemporary never really was my genre of choice, but I had so much fun reading this novel. Maybe it's because summer is right around the corner, maybe it was the voice of Leila Howland's writing that just sucked me in, or maybe the story was just that enjoyable. I think it's all three. I recommend this to anyone who wants a quick, fun-filled novel with a cute little forbidden love story with all the drama, tragedy, and family history hidden in the streets of Nantucket.

First Line: Even without Holly Howard and Dori Archer, who'd been suspended for drinking on campus, we were supposed to win that game.
Story: S
Cover: A

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