I've been on the move for years, searching for my one big break. Sucks that when I'm finally handed the key to success it turns out to be Katherine D'Arcy. Yeah, sure, she's hot as hell. But the last thing I need is some virginal summer girl screwing with my head.
I came to remote Little Bear Island to escape the confines of her uptight, country-club world. I'm sure as hell not going back. Still, I can't stop thinking about her…sexy, dark brown eyes…luscious curves… Does she hide her body under those oxfords and ridiculous cardigans just to torment me?
In just one summer, Katherine has become my everything. If only there weren't that one inconvenient truth I've been keeping from her... Because when she learns what I've been hiding, I just might lose it all.
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By A. S. Green, Karen Grove
Entangled Publishing, LLCCopyright © 2016 A. S. Green
All rights reserved.
I used to think my list-making was just a weird personality quirk. I had your basic to-do lists, of course. But also Christmas lists, future baby name lists, and packing lists for trips I'd likely never take. On top of that, I created restaurant rankings according to bathroom cleanliness, not to mention lists for about fifty theme parties — more than I could ever actually throw.
My obsession with order hit its low point my senior year of high school. That's when I found myself alone on Homecoming weekend, slipping lists into plastic sleeves before alphabetizing and assembling them in a three-ring notebook. Thankfully, my best friend and other obsession — Andrew Mason — was there to rescue me from a full-on mental break.
Two years of self-help books later, and with three years of Bennington College under my belt, I think I have it licked. So, admittedly, starting a new list (even a mental one) has me worried.
Relapse is nothing to mess with.
Top Three Reasons to Tell Andrew How I Really Feel about Him
1. Mom would finally quit bugging me about it.
2. Macie would finally quit bugging me about it.
3. Enough is enough already.
Top Three Reasons to Keep My Mouth Shut
1. It could end the longest relationship I've ever had with a guy.
2. He needs to realize how he feels about me on his own.
3. Self-preservation is not to be underrated.
With a sigh, I force myself to stop. The last exam of my junior year is complete, finished, behind me. I'm done thinking for the day. I skip up the front steps of the Alpha Phi sorority house feeling six inches taller and ten pounds lighter than when I left this morning. Econ has been the bane of my existence this whole semester, and now that it's over I feel like I could sing. Except that I can't. So I don't.
Instead, I give a little hop at the top step and slap the AΦ sign hanging between the two columns that flank the front steps. The sign swings on its thin, rusty chains, squeaking out my victory song.
I love this house, in large part because it's not my mother's house, but also because the architect had a perfect sense of what is orderly and good in this world. And orderly and good are practically synonymous in my book.
To illustrate, the house is a two-story Greek revival with a balcony straight out of a romance novel. From the front, the second story has five evenly spaced windows, under which the first-story windows and front door line up tidily. The balcony is supported by six fluted columns. The AΦ sign hangs exactly centered between the third and fourth columns. In short, it is a shining example of perfect symmetry. Which is why it was the only house I rushed.
Inside, I'm greeted by the ever-present aroma of home: popcorn, melted butter, and salt. I inhale deeply then dash up the wooden staircase, letting my hand slide along the polished bannister. A second later, I'm flinging open the door to my bedroom sanctuary. My heart rate slows at the mere sight of it.
The walls are painted a crisp white — a specific shade I selected after spending hours debating between Pearl, Antique, and Quartz. My best friend Macie Montgomery threatened to shave off my eyebrows in my sleep if I didn't flip a coin and get it over with. She's a nut, but I took her seriously. Eventually, I settled on Bone.
Ansel Adams black-and-white photographs, evenly spaced, accentuate the walls, and silver curtains flank the window, which faces the street. My elegant charcoal gray bedspread is smooth and tucked tight. My bookshelves are alphabetized with my favorite classics, many of them left over from my abandoned English major. There are no piles of dirty laundry, no fashion magazines, no high school memorabilia. In other words: perfection.
So what if I've missed more than one party to stay home and clean. So what if I skip out on a lot of things, particularly if they're poorly planned. Chaos begets chaos, I always say, and I've never found a reason to change my stripes, even though Macie calls my decorating style Prison Chic.
Macie and I both rushed Alpha Phi as freshmen, but we really met in Chinese 101, which I took because I needed a language and Andrew thought it would enhance my employability. Basically, the only thing Macie and I came out of that class knowing was that she is the yin to my yang.
A few cases in point: I am a business major. Macie spends her days in the theater department. Macie has hippie parents who started a health-food chain that's gone international. Her hair is black, naturally curly, and twisted into artful perfection. She can pretty much buy whatever designer clothes she wants but instead wears overalls made out of hemp or flax seed or something.
I, on the other hand, can only afford consignment shops these days, but I do my best to get my hands on every Ralph Lauren label I can find. Macie thinks my oxfords and cardigans make me look like a politician's wife. She might be right. Even my hair has gone a little Jackie O this semester.
Mom calls it "keeping up appearances," which has only been necessary since my dad took off with a produce broker from Tampa right before my senior year of high school. Mom has refused to divorce him in the hope he'll come home again, which means two things: (1) Mom is delusional, and (2) no divorce means no court-ordered financial support.
I'd be fine doing without cashmere sweaters for the rest of my life if it meant my dad sticking around. Basically, Mom and I have been living on a Ramen-noodle budget, but we do our best to sweep our broken noodles under the rug.
All of this makes it hard for me to justify living at the sorority house. It's way more expensive than the dorms. But Mom says if you want to attract a rich man, you have to look like you're accustomed to wealth. So my room and board is an investment on which she expects to get a big return.
I don't share my mom's obsession with me marrying "well," so sometimes it's like living in a modern-day Austen novel. Fortunately, Andrew's the only man I'm interested in marrying, and he's more than enough for my mom, so it's all good.
I'm still standing in my bedroom doorway doing deep-breathing exercises when Macie slips in around me saying, "Girl, welcome home. Was it as nasty as you thought it'd be?"
I groan but give her a quick, one-armed hug around the neck. "The best I can say is that Econ is over."
"Which probably means you did fine. I always get my best grades on the tests I think I blew."
I stack my book and review notes neatly on the shelf and pull my long, dark brown hair into a supertight ponytail. Macie flops down on my bedspread, undoing the hospital corners. She knows how much this bugs me, so for good measure she rolls over on her back and sweeps her arms up and down like she's making a snow angel on the blankets. She calls this "desensitizing me to chaos." Or "Macie Therapy" for short.
I've learned not to say anything. I'll fix it once she leaves.
"It's freaking amazing to be done," she says.
I can't imagine that her final in History of American Film was as grueling as mine, but I let her have her moment because she's my best friend and I love her.
"In thirteen days I'll be doing my summer theater program in Tibet, and you'll be dragging your ass out of bed for Professor Schumacher's internship from hell. Then one more year of this place and we're out of here," she says with a sigh. Macie had an awesome freshman year (complete with an awesome older boyfriend), but after he graduated she totally cooled to college life. I'm going to miss her when she's gone.
"It's not an internship from hell," I tell her (again). In fact, I worked all year to get into it. Andrew's doing it, too, though he was a shoe-in based on his grades and the fact Professsor Schumacher is his dad's old frat brother. I, on the other hand, had to get three faculty letters of recommendation, write an essay on the pros and cons of the European Union, plus take an extra three credits this semester so I had all the prerequisites checked off. It might not be the internship from hell, but I sure battled through hell to get it.
"Andrew says all the top law schools are demanding undergraduate work like this." Macie isn't listening; she's chipping the nail polish off her big toe. "My GPA is likely going to dip after that econ final ... not to mention poli-sci," I add, biting my lip. "But the internship will make up for it on my law school application ... assuming my LSATs are good."
She makes jazz hands, wiggling her fingers at me as if to say she finds this whole topic completely not fascinating.
My phone buzzes and I check the text: i'll pick you up at 6:00 for dinner. i got something to ask you. love ya.
"Who is it?" she asks. "Is it Andy?"
"It's Andrew." She knows Andrew is fundamentally opposed to nicknames. I straighten the framed picture of him and me that sits on my nightstand. He gave it to me for Christmas. The top edge of the frame is etched with the words: Friends Forever.
"What does he want?"
Andrew always ends his texts with love ya. It's like he knows we'll be together someday, even if he's not ready to admit it yet.
"He's taking me to dinner. He has something to ask me." I read the text again and suck in my breath. "You don't think ... ?"
Macie raises her eyebrows at me. "Girl, your optimism is inspiring."
I resist the urge to punch her. A girl can dream, and I've read plenty of love stories that are more unlikely than ours.
Top Four Reasons to Tell Andrew How I Really Feel about Him
1. Mom would finally quit bugging me about it.
2. Macie would finally quit bugging me about it.
3. Enough is enough already.
4. I love a happy ending.
"I don't know why you'd even want to date him," she says. "Judging by all the skanks he dates, you're not his type."
"That's where you're wrong," I say. "He may play the field, but I'm exactly his type when it comes to a long-term relationship. His parents would never approve of those girls. I'm in it for the long haul. And, by the way, his parents love me."
It's true. His mother even told me not to worry, that Andrew would come around in time. And besides me, who knows him better than his own mother?
"You make me so sad. Why would you want to wait around for him, or for anyone, for that matter?"
"I'm not waiting around. I've had boyfriends."
"Two," she says, rolling her eyes. "The first one lasted a week. The second only a month. You never even let him flick your bean."
"Excuse me?" I say, jutting out one hip.
"You heard me."
I shrug. I have nothing against sex, or flicking of any kind, so long as it's with the right person. Mom thought she had the right guy, but look how that turned out. Forgive me for being cautious. When I give it up, it'll be right. "Andrew's worth waiting for."
"He's smokin' hot. I'll give you that. And word around campus is that he's good with his hands, if you know what I mean."
I cringe, and there's no hiding it from Macie.
"But shit, girl, he treats you like you're incapable of making your own decisions."
"That's not fair."
I hate this argument. Andrew and I have only ever had each other's best interests at heart. He was there for me senior year after my dad left and my life turned to shit. He was able to get me through that, even though it had been a fragile time for him, too.
His brother had died years earlier, and his parents refused to talk about it. They still pretend like it never happened.
They deal with their grief by micro-managing everything about Andrew's life, but they do this without really taking care of him. I, on the other hand, take care of him. I care. I'm always there to listen, like that time back in high school when he tried to talk about his brother but broke down crying instead.
"Uh-huh," Macie says, not buying it. She refuses to believe Andrew has a soft side, but that's because he only shows it to me. "What are you majoring in again?" she asks.
I scowl at her. So what if Andrew convinced me to switch my major from English to Business sophomore year? It was a smart idea, and something I'm almost positive I would have done on my own, even if he hadn't suggested it. My future will be a lot more financially secure now, and God knows I need that.
After we graduate college and then law school, Andrew has plans for us to do some charity work for impoverished families, then we'll open up our own law firm. After we're well-established, we'll hire some associates. It's practical. It's orderly. I love it.
"You've let Andrew take the lead for too long."
"Half this campus doesn't even know your name. They only know you as Andrew Mason's girlfriend, which would be bad enough if you actually were his girlfriend, but seeing as you're not ..."
She's right. Andrew thinks people's assumptions are funny, so he never corrects them when they say it. He just plants a kiss on my forehead, which doesn't do much to set the record straight. What it tells me is that Andrew says with his actions what he can't say with his words. Yet.
"Well, I am his girl friend."
Macie rolls her eyes. "Drop the torch, Katherine, or you're going to die a virgin."
The first time she and I had this argument, I expected her to apologize. She never did. Instead she said, "You don't even know what you're good at. You. All alone. By yourself. For all you know you've got some incredible hidden talent that only needs a little personal space for it to come out.
"Maybe you're a poet. Or you could throw pottery. Put some muscle on those scrawny little arms. I mean, for the love of God, Katherine, who in their right mind wants to go to law school?" She said these last two words like they were synonymous with root canals or waterboarding.
I slide my phone back into my pocket and quickly change the subject. "Andrew and I will probably end up at Theta Delt after dinner. Do you want to meet us there?"
"Yeah, I could go," she says. "There's an end-of-the-year drama club party, but I'm not really feeling it."
My phone buzzes again. I'm expecting Andrew, but this time it's Mom.
can you pop home this afternoon? there's something we need to talk about. can't do it through text.
I groan and text back:
sorry. andrew is picking me up at 6.
Mom responds half a second later:
have him pick you up at the house.
It's like she had her response teed up before I even hit send. I pinch the bridge of my nose. Andrew and I really should have thought about going farther away for school.
"What is it?" Macie asks.
In frustration, I pass my phone to her, and she shoots me a sympathetic look.CHAPTER 2
The house that I grew up in is a large two story on a quiet cul-de-sac. It has a porch swing and even a white picket fence. It looks like a happy family cliché, which is pretty much why I hate coming back, even with school less than a forty-minute drive away.
After getting Mom's text, I delayed the drive home so I wouldn't have to spend too much time here. Andrew should arrive shortly. Enough time for Mom and I to talk about whatever she thinks needs discussing.
When I open the door, the sound of the TV drifts from the family room to the front hall. I take off my shoes and line them up on the mat, taking the time to straighten my mom's carelessly discarded heels. My bare feet go shwip-wip-wip against the hardwood floor, down the hall to the kitchen.
"Katherine? Is that you?" Mom calls. I always wonder at the question. Who else would it be? It's not as if Dad is someday going to answer.
"Yeah, Mom. It's me."
She's in the kitchen wearing her pale pink business suit. The suit is a leftover from her days as a Mary Kay makeup consultant, back when Dad was around and she didn't have to work but did it just to get out of the house. Now she works for an insurance agent during the week and as a cashier at the Hy-Vee (one town over so she doesn't run into people she knows) on Saturdays.
She tosses back the contents of her wineglass, then sets it down on the kitchen counter with a dull clink.
"How was work?" I ask, eyeing the empty glass.
Excerpted from Summer Girl by A. S. Green, Karen Grove. Copyright © 2016 A. S. Green. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.5 stars Katherine has her life all planned out: she will marry her best friend, become a lawyer, and complete an summer internship that will allow her to spend time with Andrew. Everything is on track until she finds out that her mother spent over half of her trust fun in an attempt to keep up appearances after Katherine's father left. She is forced to find a summer job that will cover her cost for her final year in school and her search lead to the small island town of Little Bear. There she is met by a giant dog, a little town unused to strangers, and a handsome musician/ferry operator. Bennett is drawn to Katherine and they become friends. Eventually, they hook up and Katherine begins to question her life decisions/relationship with Andrew. Bennett is keeping a big secret and Katherine is still torn between her planned future and her feelings for Bennett. I really liked this book and was instantly drawn to the story. I liked both main characters and while it had a little more angst than i normally like, i definitely recommend this book to fans of the New Adult genre. I was given a free copy for an honest review.
I'm a bit torn with this one. I liked the romance, and really liked Katherine and Bennet together, and the setting of Little Bear and it's (sometimes quirky) inhabitants was wonderful. But Katherine's character annoyed me for a bit, especially her obsession with Andrew. I just couldn't understand what exactly she saw in him. And I liked the hero, Bennet, but didn't necessarily get to know him that well. I really, really enjoyed the middle 3rd of this. Bennet and Katherine exploring Little Bear, Katherine making friends, the bond growing between the two of them... And the dogs. Seriously, loved the dogs! Which, coupled with the sort of strange drama that seemed to come from nowhere, sort of ruined things for me when Sam and the bear meet their ends. It was incredibly depressing and honestly felt needless. Their deaths added nothing to the story but sadness. The way Katherine is towards Andrew even at the end was also disappointing. He has proven himself to not be much of a friend, yet she continues to act like he is her best friend. He is a VERY unlikable character throughout. I felt that the first 1/3 was good, the middle 1/3 was great, and the last 1/3 was okay. There were some great suspenseful moments, like the near-drowning and the bear at the beginning, which I liked, but I feel like the part near the end was over-the-top and things really shifted right before the Summer Fest. So, I liked this and would recommend it, but Dog Lovers be warned! :) I received a digital ARC from the publisher through NetGalley.com for an honest, unbiased review. This in no way influenced my review. My opinion is my 100% own.
What an amazing book from start to finish! If you are a lover of NA books, you will devour this story from start to finish! I enjoyed the characters and I look forward to reading more by this author in the future!! 4 stars from me.
Escaping to an island to find herself - can she also find love? When she discovers her mother has used a significant amount of the trust fund money supposed to finance her next year of studying to pay part of their mortgage, Katherine D'Arcy has to abandon her intern plans and get a job, quickly! She's lucky enough to find one on, courtesy of her friend, and it will entail moving to Little Bear Island house sitting for the summer and the earnings will more than cover the missing money. When she gets to the island she finds much more than she'd anticipated, including the opportunity her friend had talked about for her to find out more about what she actually wanted from life rather than spending her life trying to meet the expectations of her Mum and her best friend. As Katy gets to know the people on the island her outlook, expectations and relationships all undergo significant changes - especially as she develops a relationship with Bennett who has worked for the ferry company for two years but still feels an outsider. He resents that she seems to be more easily accepted into the community but then falls for her himself - which also helps get him more accepted, too. However he is keeping a secret, a very relevant secret and one which, when Katy discovers it, could end their possible HEA..... This is a highly enjoyable read with surprises being uncovered along the way, ensuring this is no smooth road to romance! The characters are well portrayed and the development of Katy's relationships with the islanders and Bennet are appropriately paced. There are plenty of twists and turns on their journey to ensure this is an engaging story which has the reader just hoping things will work out well in the end! I was gifted a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
summer girl, is a sweet (and sexy) new adult romance by a.s. green. told in the alternating(ish) viewpoints of our two leads, katherine d'arcy and bennet whose last name is kind of a spoiler so i won't say it here. katherine is a list-maker, a planner, someone who needs to control her emotions and her surroundings to feel safe. she has deep-seated abandonment issues and is trapped in a platonic relationship with her best friend, andrew mason, who she happens to think she is madly in love with. when their summer plans are derailed by her mother, katherine finds herself as a caretaker to a decomissioned lighthouse on little bear island in the middle of lake superior. there she meets bennet, the replacement ferry driver and other than katherine the most recent newcomer to the island. bennet is an aspiring songwriter, but since moving to the island he's been in a rut. his agent in l.a. wants him to try moving to nashville, especially if no new songs are forthcoming. bennet has a fraught relationship with his family, disowned by his parents when he chose to follow his musical dreams over staying and fulfilling the future they'd planned out for him. when katherine and bennet meet there are instant sparks, something that confuses katherine because she's been in love with andrew for so long. but they can't stay away from each other. and the relationship deepens quickly and as bennet pushes katherine further out of her comfort zone, the more confident and true to herself she feels. she discovers the future she and andrew had mapped out isn't actually a future that appeals to her. and starts to make changes to her life and her plans with bennet's encouragement. the misunderstandings when they happen all center around andrew. to get into the crux of the issues would spoil the plot a bit, but they provide a reasonable bit of drama and uncertainty, but aren't so overwhelming that you ever believe these two won't get their happy ending. bennet tends to call katherine, d'arcy. in part as a call back to pride & prejudice. it's a bit strange to hear a guy making the austen connection, but other than the names this wasn't meant to be a p&p retelling, which honestly i think is a good thing, even though i do love me some jane austen. all in all this is an enjoyable summery new adult romance. **summer girl is scheduled to publish on august 8, 2016. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/entangled publishing (embrace) in exchange for my honest review.
Wow, just wow! This book was amazing and is totally big screen worthy. I absolutely loved this book & I couldn't put it down. I rank this book right up there with Nicholas Sparks. Sometimes our childhood affects who we are as adults and the choices we make...Kathrine has her whole life planned out in perfect order until the unexpected happens. This book will take you through her journey to get outside of her comfort zone. That's when she takes a summer job on a little island. It is there that she truly starts to find herself and live on the edge just a little and she meets Bennet on the ferry to the island and everything for Kathrine begins to change. This book takes you through all the twists and turns and even a few surprises along the way. I look forward to reading more from A.S. Green & can't wait to tell everyone I know to read this book!
Sometimes, it only takes one summer to change your life… Katherine is obsessed with order and planning. She’s determined to finish college and go on to law school. All of this, along with her summer internship, will bring her and her best friend Andrew together, where they belong. Until she finds out that her mother spent almost ten thousand dollars of her college money. Her friend, Macie, convinces her to take a summer job on an island taking care of the lighthouse. The pay is more than she needs to finish her last year of school. Katherine takes the job as the new Summer Girl so she can get her life back on track. Bennet left his affluent family to follow his dream of being a musician. His journey brought him to Little Bear Island, working as a ferry driver to make ends meet. He isn’t interested in getting to know the new Summer Girl. He’s only driving the ferry to fill in for a sick member of the crew and then he’s off to Nashville or LA or somewhere where music can be his main focus. He knows that Katherine is destined for the country club at their first meeting and he already left the life behind. This story was slow to start but once Katherine got the island, I was pulled in and couldn’t stop reading. Katherine’s OCD and super planning was pretty funny. A little time away from Andrew and Katherine became her own person and realized she needs to set her own path. Bennet is thoughtful and sensitive but also willing to give Katherine the push to realize that she needs to have her own dreams. He gave her the space to find out who she is. There were parts of this story that brought me to tears and some that had me laughing out loud. This was my first book by this author but it definitely won’t be the last. *I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
Loved this one!! The writing was fantastic and the characters grabbed my attention immediately. It was fun to watch Katherine evolve from the very dependent, rigid girl we first meet in the story to the more relaxed, fun loving Katherine she truly is. She arrived in the island town of Little Bear just wanting to put in her time, get paid, and get back to her real life. Never did she expect what the summer had in store for her. A couple of dogs, some really good friends, and a very sexy guy turn her world upside down. For Bennett, having Katherine show up in Little Bear is a godsend and a curse all at once. He's been hiding out there for a while trying to write his music but nothing would come. Not until Katherine. Now he's writing some of his best music. Too bad Katherine seems to come from a world he left behind long ago and has no interest in returning to. As the summer rolls along and these two become close Bennett knows he needs to tell Katherine about his real identity but will the truth send her running home??? This is definitely a book I recommend.
If you like NA romance, you will LOVE this book! New Adult romance usually isn't my first choice. But holy cow, I was SUCKED IN to this book. Couldn't put it down! The story moved at a perfect pace, and A.S. Did a fantastic job of keeping me sucked in by dropping little hints about a huge mystery that I couldn't wait to see solved! I loved Katherine. Her inner monologues gave me some good chuckles, and I enjoyed watching her grow as a person throughout the book. And Bennet. Oh my gosh. You WILL dump your current book boyfriend for Bennet. Thoughtful, wise, tough yet sensitive. And HOT. Let's not forget that attribute! I was almost in tears at a couple parts, and again, the suspense of finding out about the mystery and how everything would turn out in the end made this story absolutely enthralling. I thought the final scene could have had a little more of a "POW!" moment, but I have absolutely zero complaints about this book! A.S. Is incredibly talented, and I can't wait to read more of her books! ***I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review***
Katherine is living a life scripted by everyone except herself. Scripted by her Mother and by her secret pretend boyfriend Andrew. After a shortage of funds for her last year of college arises she takes a job as a lighthouse keeper for the summer. Thus begins the journey of finding herself and possibly finding the love of her life.