Monday, May 26, 2014

Title: Nantucket Red
Author: Leila Howland
Series: Nantucket, book #2
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Publication Date: May 13, 2014
Source: received for review from publisher
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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Cricket Thompson's lifetime of overachieving has paid off: she's headed to Brown University in the fall, with a spot on the lacrosse team and a scholarship that covers almost everything. Who knew living in the dorm cost money? An Ivy League education seems to mean living at home for the next four years.

When Cricket is offered the chance to earn enough cash to afford a real college experience, she heads back to Nantucket for the summer. But the faraway island challenges Cricket in ways she hadn't anticipated. It's hard to focus on earning money for next year, when she finds her world opening up in entirely new ways-to art, to travel, and, most unexpectedly, to a future completely different from the one she has been working toward her whole life. A friendship blossoms with Ben, the gorgeous surfer and bartender who encourages Cricket to be free, even as she smarts at the pain of seeing Zack, her first love, falling for her worst enemy.

But one night, when Cricket finally lets herself break all her own rules, she realizes she may have ruined her carefully constructed future with one impulsive decision. Cricket must dig deep to fight for her future, discovering that success isn't just about reaching goals, but also about listening to what she's been trying to ignore-her own heart.

Last year I read Nantucket Blue. I liked it, it was a cute fast read, and though I had some issues with Crickets maturity, I still walked away feeling entertained. Nantucket Red though, I didn’t like it quite as much. It wasn’t bad, but it was lacking something.

It starts out pretty much where Nantucket Blue leaves off, but it speeds up like crazy. You get a tiny glimpse of Crickets Senior year. I mean TINY!!! Like pages… and I felt like I had pushed the super fast forward button on the dvd player and couldn’t get it to stop. Presto!!! It’s Summer again.

Cricket is now graduated and heading to Brown University in the Fall. (She is sure to tell everyone this at every opportunity so they know how smart she is. Lol) She needs money, so she heads back to Nantucket to get a high paying job to help fund her college room and board. She ends up finding a decent job, but there isn’t much of her actually working. So who knows if she ever did make the amount she needed, because it’s not really focused on.

Her friendship with Jules and a new boy interest, Ben, play a big part in the story. Then there is her ex, Zack, who is also spending the summer on the island with is new girlfriend around. Much drama ensues as well as stupid decisions.

Nantucket Red was okay.. it was a very fast read. I’ll give it that, but I still couldn’t build a connection with Cricket. I just didn’t like her. Honestly, I thought she was an idiot. Her relationships with everyone came off as fake to me, but that could be because she was kinda fake. I’m trying to go easy on it, because I did read an amazing book right before starting this and that can sometimes skew my feelings.. Overall I think it makes for a good summer read, but it’s nothing special.

About the author:

LEILA HOWLAND loves to read, explore L.A., and engage in funny and meaningful conversations with her friends and family, especially her brother who calls from Washington D.C. whenever he’s waiting for the bus. A lot gets discussed in those phone calls, but they tend to end abruptly when the bus shows up. She can really cut the rug, but wishes she could sing without people covering their ears. A graduate of Georgetown University, Leila spent five years acting in New York where she was a company member of the award-winning Flea Theater in Tribeca. It was a lot of fun and she often talks about “getting back into it.” The closest she has come was a stint as an extra on The Young and the Restless in 2010. Leila now lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two dogs. She teaches high school English and blogs for HelloGiggles. NANTUCKET BLUE is her first novel.

Find Leila:

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