Friday, May 31, 2013
Nantucket Blue by Leila Howland
Source: Received an e-ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
I had originally planned to read this before I went on my vacation but time got away from me so I was actually able to read it on the beach, which was great because the cover screams out that it is the perfect beach read. I think that is true although this book is a bit on the heavier side than my preferred beach fare.
Cricket is looking forward to a beautiful lazy summer in Nantucket with her best friend Jules, an invitation that is suddenly rescinded after the death of Jules' mother. Nonetheless Cricket makes the trek out to Nantucket just trying to be there for her, something that is complicated as Cricket embarks on a secret summer romance that could hurt Jules if discovered.
This is a difficult review for me because while I liked most of the plot lines and characters in this book, they were definitely more than the whole. My overall impression of this book is decidedly neutral-I wouldn't warn you off of reading it but I'm not going to insist that you run out and pick it up. I think the main reason for that is just the way everything is tied together, that is to say not very tightly. Cricket had a lot of cool moments (most notably to me were her job as a maid with the hilarious Liz and her internship with a writer) but they weren't quite one cohesive whole for me.
The cover seems to hint at a big summer romance, to my mind, and to some extent that is true as Cricket experiences a giddiness from being with that one boy. But it does not overwhelm the other plots nor is it instalove. I actually found it to be a pretty accurate and realistic love story although toward the ending, it sort of explodes into melodrama. Communication is important people!
There is also parental drama as Cricket's mom has completely withdrawn from the world following her divorce while her father has fully embraced his new wife and child, possibly to the exclusion of Cricket. The father plot line is not at all resolved to my extreme dissatisfaction but at least the mother's story ends on a moment of hope.
Lastly there is the friendship arc, which was so sad to me. I have lost friends over the years (sometimes reconnecting with them later) but that was because I moved-not because of the reason detailed here, which absolutely broke my heart. Jules is kind of a crappy friend and I wish we had a bit more understanding of her history with Cricket to justify why Cricket kept trying.
Overall: Yes, there are a lot of good points to this book but the whole just didn't add up to much for me.
Content: Some language, quite a bit of alcohol use, and lots of sexual content make this probably better for the older YA reader.
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