Nantucket Blue

Leila Howland. Hyperion, $16.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4231-6051-9
Cricket Thompson is inseparable from her best friend Jules Clayton, so much so that she’s practically a member of the Clayton family. When Jules’s mother, Nina, dies unexpectedly, everything changes, including the friends’ plans to spend the summer in Nantucket—it’s “family only” now. Disappointed, 17-year-old Cricket heads to Nantucket anyway, becoming a chambermaid at a popular inn (“Would I be churning butter, cleaning chimneys, beating rugs with a broom? Who cared?”). As she tries to handle Nina’s death and rejection by Jules, unexpected love awaits. Debut author Howland’s descriptions for everything from a summer storm (“The grass in the back yard was rain-drunk”) to the stirrings of first love (“There was this lightness that occasionally took me over, making me feel like I was made of balloons”) are lush and moving. Readers should feel empowered by Cricket’s efforts to grow up into a strong, honest, and emotionally intelligent young woman, even as they are enchanted by the romantic and exclusive island setting. This is a natural beach read, but will easily win Howland year-round fans, too. Ages 14–up. Agent: Sara Crowe, Harvey Klinger. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/11/2013
Release date: 05/01/2013
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 294 pages - 978-1-4231-6139-4
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