Expected Publication: July 2, 2019
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Format: via NetGalley
Growing up, Lara always dreamed of leaving Nantucket to become a writer. Now that she's a bestselling novelist living in New York City, she realizes that success isn't what she thought it would be. Confused, and with a harrowing case of writer's block, Lara misses the island way of life more than ever. But going back to Nantucket out of the blue isn't so easy, as a deep rift with her childhood best friend, Isabelle, has kept the two from speaking for years.
When her mother is laid off from her job and becomes depressed, Lara reluctantly comes home, leaving a failed relationship and hopefully her other troubles behind. But facing her estranged best friend is harder than she expects. And falling for Isabelle's brother, Sebastian--who was also Lara's teenage crush--only complicates things. Lara soon realizes that she must remedy the mistakes of her past in order to find true happiness.
Surfside Sisters focuses on best friends Lara and Isabelle who have been friends forever, Isabelle has been the one with a cushy life and no worries while Lara has always had to work hard for the things she wants. When Lara was a teenager she fell hard for Sebastian, Isabelle’s brother but never acted on it since she valued her friendship like nothing else. So she denied her feelings and possibly lost out on the love of her life just so she wouldn’t make Isabelle mad.
As time goes on both Lara and Isabelle fall in and out of relationships but Sebastian was always the love of Lara’s life. They flirted but she never knew if his feelings were mutual or just simply flirting. Both friends wanted to be writers and after Lara’s father passed away she dropped out of school to help her mom, while Isabelle continued college. With a little luck Lara’s writing career takes off and she becomes successful. She wants to share this news with Isabelle but even after years of not talking Lara still thinks of them as friends while Isabelle doesn't want anything to do with her. She has moved on with Lara’s ex and is simply jealous that her career hasn't taken off like Lara’s.
While I liked this beachy read there were parts I didn't like. I didn't like how Lara kept trying to hang on to a friendship that was done by all accounts. I didn't like how it seemed Lara was the only one who still wanted to be friends, it was as if she was begging Isabelle to be friends with her. Isabelle seemed like a bully at times just playing with Lara’s emotions when she wanted to. She knew how Lara felt about her brother yet basically always told her he was off limits like she controlled Lara. I think a true friend would want you to be happy no matter what even if that meant becoming involved with your brother.
The romance with Lara and Sebastian was something alright. I liked the push and pull of it all. Their timing was never right, but all relationships aren't always instant right? The fact that it took them forever to get together was a great move, we saw them grow and come into their own which to me meant when they finally got together it was the perfect time. Even the friendship of Lara and Isabelle came together at the end, which I thought was good also. Sometimes friendships don't always last but the ones that do endure over time are ones that can make the long haul. Surfside Sisters is the perfect beach read one that gives us a wonderful story about love and friendships that capture the perfect essence of Nantucket Summers.