Title: The Summer After You and Me by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult, Romance
Length: 304 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
Will it be a summer of fresh starts or second chances?
For Lucy, the Jersey Shore isn’t just the perfect summer escape, it’s home. As a local girl, she knows not to get attached to the tourists. They breeze in during Memorial Day weekend, crowding her costal town and stealing moonlit kisses, only to pack up their beach umbrellas and empty promises on Labor Day. Still, she can’t help but crush on charming Connor Malloy. His family spends every summer next door, and she longs for their friendship to turn into something deeper.
Then Superstorm Sandy sweeps up the coast, bringing Lucy and Connor together for a few intense hours. Except nothing is the same in the wake of the storm, and Lucy is left to pick up the pieces of her broken heart and her broken home. Time may heal all wounds, but with Memorial Day approaching and Connor returning, Lucy’s summer is sure to be filled with fireworks.
The Summer After You and Me by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski is a very sweet and charming young adult romance. Set on the Jersey Shore, it is a heartwarming story that takes place during the summer after Superstorm Sandy swept through leaving chaos and destruction in its wake. More than just homes need rebuilding when islander Lucy Giordano is reunited with summer resident Connor Malloy.
Lucy has a longtime crush on Connor but she knows a romance with a part timer is a recipe for heartache. But just before Sandy hits, she and Connor have a momentary connection that she hopes will lead to a real relationship between them. Outside interference derails their budding romance and when Connor returns for the summer, both have moved on. But it is pretty obvious they still have feelings for each other, and Lucy’s life becomes very complicated when a rash decision leads to problems with her friends and her twin brother, Liam.
Lucy is a very engaging and likable character. She has decided that love is not worth the pain, so she is going to play it safe when it comes to romance. But Connor’s return brings back all those feelings she has worked so hard to forget and once she finds out the real reason why their relationship fizzled, she finds it very hard to ignore her reaction to him. Lucy tries keeping all of her problems to herself, but in the long run, this causes a rift between her and her closest friends.
Lucy and her friends think that Connor is nothing but a player, but appearances might just be deceiving. He really is a nice guy despite his reputation and his friendship with Lucy is very endearing. Once he and Lucy work through their initial awkwardness, they enjoy hanging out together. For the first time since Connor started coming to the island, they take the time to get to know each other and Lucy is pleasantly surprised to discover she has misjudged him.
The Summer After You and Me is a light read despite the upheaval and turmoil in Lucy’s life. Jennifer Salvato Doktorski adroitly blends family, romance and friendship with real life problems and the resulting story is absolutely delightful. The characters’ growth is believable and the resolution of the issues is realistic. The storyline has plenty of depth and substance and it is blissfully angst free. A lovely young adult contemporary romance that I highly recommend to fans of the genre.