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Summer Nights and Meteorites

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From the two-time Sydney Taylor Honor author comes another sweet Nantucket-set summer romance, perfect for fans of Rachel Lynn Solomon and K.L. Walther.

Jordan Edelman’s messy dating days are over. After a few too many broken hearts, and a father who worries a bit too much, she’s sworn off boys—at least for the summer. And since she’ll be tagging along on her father’s research trip to Nantucket, she doesn’t think it’ll be too hard to stick to her resolution.

But hooking up with the cute boy on the ferry doesn’t count, right? At least, not until that cute boy turns out to be Ethan Barbanel. As in, her father’s longtime research assistant Ethan Barbanel, the boy Jordan has hated from afar for years. And to make matters worse, Jordan might actually be falling for him. 

As if that didn’t complicate her life enough, Jordan’s new summer job with a local astronomer turns up a centuries-old mystery surrounding Gibson’s Comet—and as she dives into her research, what she learns just might put her growing relationship with Ethan in jeopardy.
Hannah Reynolds grew up outside of Boston, where she spent most of her childhood and teenage years recommending books to friends, working at a bookstore, and making chocolate desserts. She received her BA in creative writing and archaeology from Ithaca College, which meant she never needed to stop telling romantic stories or playing in the dirt. After living in San Francisco, New York, and Paris, she came back to Massachusetts and now lives in Cambridge. View titles by Hannah Reynolds
My therapist told me recently that instead of making lists about things I hated (Ethan Barbanel, Benjamin Franklin, death, entropy), I should make lists about things I loved, or even liked, or, at the very least, could appreciate in the moment.

And so: I liked the seventy-­five-­degree June day. I appreciated the cup of Dunkin’ in my hand. I liked all the fishing boats filling the port of Hyannis.

Dad loves boats. He took me to harbor after harbor every time we visited the Cape, explaining the difference between sloops and bowriders, daydreaming out loud about the kind we’d get if we were the kind of people who could afford boats, as opposed to a widowed historian and his seventeen-­year-­old daughter. And while I liked looking at the small craft, I couldn’t really picture myself sailing down the Charles River. Maybe because most of those people dressed a little differently from my normal all-­black outfits and combat boots.

However, people underestimated the greatness of combat boots,which went on my list of things I appreciated (specifically, their arch support). I’d taken the CapeFlyer from Boston to Hyannis, and good shoes were crucial as I hauled my two suitcases from the train station to the harbor. I maneuvered my load down the sidewalk edging Hyannis’s port, passing men loading giant cages onto a weathered fishing vessel next to elegant catamarans.

When I neared shouting distance of the ferry building, I dropped into one of the many Adirondack chairs lining the green. Forty minutes until my ferry left, and it hadn’t arrived yet, either, though people already waited by the dock. I closed my eyes and leaned my head back, trying to let the sunshine and lapping water soothe me. How bad could this summer be? Most people would be thrilled to spend three months on Nantucket.

When I opened my eyes a few minutes later, a boy sat in the chair closest to me, eating pizza out of a box. Broad shoulders, aquiline nose, and an easy confidence in the way he took up space. Too good-­looking and exactly my type. I’d dated guys with his same rangy frame and smiling eyes before, and they’d been all flirtation and flattery right up until they dumped me.

Two women walked by dressed in capris and light blouses. They paused in front of the boy. One, wearing a wide-­brimmed straw hat and bedazzled sandals, made an exaggerated expression of awe.

“Is that a salad on your pizza?”

I glanced at the pizza. There did, in fact, appear to be a pile of arugula on top.

The boy in the chair, too, contemplated the pizza and the green leaves. “Sure seems to be.”

The women both laughed. “What is that, arugula?”

“Yup.”

“I love arugula on pizza,” the second woman said. “Makes me feel so healthy. Where did you get it?”

I tuned out the rest because, honestly, how much could one listen to a conversation about arugula on pizza, attractive boy notwithstanding?

Yet not five minutes after the women walked on—­seriously, the chair boy had probably only eaten two bites—­another woman paused before him.

“Isn’t that a good-­looking pizza!”

I stared at her, astonished. I knew Hyannis was an hour and a half outside the city—a small seaside town on Cape Cod—but did people seriously talk to strangers here? About pizza? Not that pizza wasn’t a worthy topic of conversation, but you couldn’t pay me to talk to a stranger.

Well. Okay. I’d talk to a stranger who looked like Chair Boy.

Still, did all these women seriously consider this boy hot enough to strike up a conversation? Chair Boy was around my age. If not jailbait, close to it.

Maybe people were being friendly and I was ridiculously standoffish.

Beyond Chair Boy, a large, multistory ferry cruised into place. My ferry. Probably my neighbor’s ferry, too. I snuck another glance at him, our eyes briefly meeting before I tore mine away and focused on my phone. God, he really was my type, with an extra hint of confidence and arrogance in the way he lounged. Come to think of it, I usually would strike up a conversation with someone who looked like him. But I wasn’t going to, not today, not anymore. It’d occurred to me recently, given the stream of guys I’d hooked up with who made me feel like shit afterward, that I was the common factor. I selected boys who never wanted anything to do with me long-­term. My selection criteria needed to be severely recalibrated.

So I wasn’t going to engage with the kind of boys I usually engaged with anymore. I wasn’t going to date or hook up with anyone this summer. I wasn’t.

I glanced over again and found him glancing at me.

And my mouth parted, and I started to say, You’re basically a walking advertisement for that pizza place, aren’t you? Only the grace of yet another person pausing to greet Chair Boy saved me from myself, this time an older man who apparently actually knew the guy. Not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, I headed for the ferry, checked my luggage, and got in line for the Grey Lady IV.

My shoulders slowly climbed toward my ears as I took in the passengers around me. I’d known the summering-­on-­Nantucket aesthetic would be different from mine, but I hadn’t expected to feel quite so out of place. Everyone seemed to have received the same memo about their outfits: faded blues and salmon pink, men in Sperrys, and more women with blond hair than allotted by nature. No one else wore mostly black. Which, fine. Most people at school didn’t, either. But I’d never felt uncomfortable dressed in black lace or fishnet tights before; I’d felt stylish. Interesting. Edgy.

It felt different wearing my clothes in a sea of beige and pearls.

I’d picked my outfit carefully this morning because I was dressing for Ethan Barbanel, who I hated, who I’d never met. I’d wanted armor, so I chose an outfit my friends said made me look both hot and badass, and which made me feel untouchable. A black top to highlight my red-­and-­black tartan skirt (Alice + Olivia, thrifted for twenty dollars at the Garment District). My trusty combat boots, dangly black earrings, and cat-­eye eyeliner.

A bored crew member scanned my ticket’s QR code and I boarded the ship, winding my way up several staircases until I reached the top outdoor deck. Somehow I’d chosen the slowest line, but plenty of seats were still open. Including one by the rail, where Chair Boy sat, having miraculously arrived before me.

Don’t do it, I told myself. Nope. Don’t. You’re done with hot, bro-­y boys. They’re bad news bears.

I did it. I took the seat on the other side of the aisle from him, also facing the water. But I didn’t look at him as the ship pulled out from the dock, Hyannis’s harbor falling away behind us. At least I had that much control.

An announcement came on about rules and regulations. To my right, women in tank tops with Greek letters poured White Claws into thermoses; boys in ACK baseball caps ate slimy-­looking ham sandwiches. I noticed my shoulders had drawn up again, high and tight, and forcibly relaxed them. I wasn’t being shipped off to Forks or anything, forced to handle pewter skies and brooding vampires. Plenty of people would give an arm and a leg to visit Nantucket.

Across the aisle, Chair Boy laughed.

A loud laugh. A look at me laugh.

I steadfastly did not look at him. I might have chosen my seat precisely to put myself in this position, but surely I had some willpower left? Surely I could keep myself from sliding down a slippery slope proven, time and again, to leave me feeling bad about myself.

He laughed once more.

I couldn’t help it. I couldn’t. I glanced over inquisitively. Our gazes collided.
“A story of self-discovery peppered with great banter [and] a minor historical mystery. Light, sweet, and a little salty: just beachy.” —Kirkus Reviews

“With an enchanting setting, sharp banter, and an emotionally grounded story, Reynolds' novel is sure to sweep teen romance fans off their feet.” Booklist

About

From the two-time Sydney Taylor Honor author comes another sweet Nantucket-set summer romance, perfect for fans of Rachel Lynn Solomon and K.L. Walther.

Jordan Edelman’s messy dating days are over. After a few too many broken hearts, and a father who worries a bit too much, she’s sworn off boys—at least for the summer. And since she’ll be tagging along on her father’s research trip to Nantucket, she doesn’t think it’ll be too hard to stick to her resolution.

But hooking up with the cute boy on the ferry doesn’t count, right? At least, not until that cute boy turns out to be Ethan Barbanel. As in, her father’s longtime research assistant Ethan Barbanel, the boy Jordan has hated from afar for years. And to make matters worse, Jordan might actually be falling for him. 

As if that didn’t complicate her life enough, Jordan’s new summer job with a local astronomer turns up a centuries-old mystery surrounding Gibson’s Comet—and as she dives into her research, what she learns just might put her growing relationship with Ethan in jeopardy.

Author

Hannah Reynolds grew up outside of Boston, where she spent most of her childhood and teenage years recommending books to friends, working at a bookstore, and making chocolate desserts. She received her BA in creative writing and archaeology from Ithaca College, which meant she never needed to stop telling romantic stories or playing in the dirt. After living in San Francisco, New York, and Paris, she came back to Massachusetts and now lives in Cambridge. View titles by Hannah Reynolds

Excerpt

My therapist told me recently that instead of making lists about things I hated (Ethan Barbanel, Benjamin Franklin, death, entropy), I should make lists about things I loved, or even liked, or, at the very least, could appreciate in the moment.

And so: I liked the seventy-­five-­degree June day. I appreciated the cup of Dunkin’ in my hand. I liked all the fishing boats filling the port of Hyannis.

Dad loves boats. He took me to harbor after harbor every time we visited the Cape, explaining the difference between sloops and bowriders, daydreaming out loud about the kind we’d get if we were the kind of people who could afford boats, as opposed to a widowed historian and his seventeen-­year-­old daughter. And while I liked looking at the small craft, I couldn’t really picture myself sailing down the Charles River. Maybe because most of those people dressed a little differently from my normal all-­black outfits and combat boots.

However, people underestimated the greatness of combat boots,which went on my list of things I appreciated (specifically, their arch support). I’d taken the CapeFlyer from Boston to Hyannis, and good shoes were crucial as I hauled my two suitcases from the train station to the harbor. I maneuvered my load down the sidewalk edging Hyannis’s port, passing men loading giant cages onto a weathered fishing vessel next to elegant catamarans.

When I neared shouting distance of the ferry building, I dropped into one of the many Adirondack chairs lining the green. Forty minutes until my ferry left, and it hadn’t arrived yet, either, though people already waited by the dock. I closed my eyes and leaned my head back, trying to let the sunshine and lapping water soothe me. How bad could this summer be? Most people would be thrilled to spend three months on Nantucket.

When I opened my eyes a few minutes later, a boy sat in the chair closest to me, eating pizza out of a box. Broad shoulders, aquiline nose, and an easy confidence in the way he took up space. Too good-­looking and exactly my type. I’d dated guys with his same rangy frame and smiling eyes before, and they’d been all flirtation and flattery right up until they dumped me.

Two women walked by dressed in capris and light blouses. They paused in front of the boy. One, wearing a wide-­brimmed straw hat and bedazzled sandals, made an exaggerated expression of awe.

“Is that a salad on your pizza?”

I glanced at the pizza. There did, in fact, appear to be a pile of arugula on top.

The boy in the chair, too, contemplated the pizza and the green leaves. “Sure seems to be.”

The women both laughed. “What is that, arugula?”

“Yup.”

“I love arugula on pizza,” the second woman said. “Makes me feel so healthy. Where did you get it?”

I tuned out the rest because, honestly, how much could one listen to a conversation about arugula on pizza, attractive boy notwithstanding?

Yet not five minutes after the women walked on—­seriously, the chair boy had probably only eaten two bites—­another woman paused before him.

“Isn’t that a good-­looking pizza!”

I stared at her, astonished. I knew Hyannis was an hour and a half outside the city—a small seaside town on Cape Cod—but did people seriously talk to strangers here? About pizza? Not that pizza wasn’t a worthy topic of conversation, but you couldn’t pay me to talk to a stranger.

Well. Okay. I’d talk to a stranger who looked like Chair Boy.

Still, did all these women seriously consider this boy hot enough to strike up a conversation? Chair Boy was around my age. If not jailbait, close to it.

Maybe people were being friendly and I was ridiculously standoffish.

Beyond Chair Boy, a large, multistory ferry cruised into place. My ferry. Probably my neighbor’s ferry, too. I snuck another glance at him, our eyes briefly meeting before I tore mine away and focused on my phone. God, he really was my type, with an extra hint of confidence and arrogance in the way he lounged. Come to think of it, I usually would strike up a conversation with someone who looked like him. But I wasn’t going to, not today, not anymore. It’d occurred to me recently, given the stream of guys I’d hooked up with who made me feel like shit afterward, that I was the common factor. I selected boys who never wanted anything to do with me long-­term. My selection criteria needed to be severely recalibrated.

So I wasn’t going to engage with the kind of boys I usually engaged with anymore. I wasn’t going to date or hook up with anyone this summer. I wasn’t.

I glanced over again and found him glancing at me.

And my mouth parted, and I started to say, You’re basically a walking advertisement for that pizza place, aren’t you? Only the grace of yet another person pausing to greet Chair Boy saved me from myself, this time an older man who apparently actually knew the guy. Not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, I headed for the ferry, checked my luggage, and got in line for the Grey Lady IV.

My shoulders slowly climbed toward my ears as I took in the passengers around me. I’d known the summering-­on-­Nantucket aesthetic would be different from mine, but I hadn’t expected to feel quite so out of place. Everyone seemed to have received the same memo about their outfits: faded blues and salmon pink, men in Sperrys, and more women with blond hair than allotted by nature. No one else wore mostly black. Which, fine. Most people at school didn’t, either. But I’d never felt uncomfortable dressed in black lace or fishnet tights before; I’d felt stylish. Interesting. Edgy.

It felt different wearing my clothes in a sea of beige and pearls.

I’d picked my outfit carefully this morning because I was dressing for Ethan Barbanel, who I hated, who I’d never met. I’d wanted armor, so I chose an outfit my friends said made me look both hot and badass, and which made me feel untouchable. A black top to highlight my red-­and-­black tartan skirt (Alice + Olivia, thrifted for twenty dollars at the Garment District). My trusty combat boots, dangly black earrings, and cat-­eye eyeliner.

A bored crew member scanned my ticket’s QR code and I boarded the ship, winding my way up several staircases until I reached the top outdoor deck. Somehow I’d chosen the slowest line, but plenty of seats were still open. Including one by the rail, where Chair Boy sat, having miraculously arrived before me.

Don’t do it, I told myself. Nope. Don’t. You’re done with hot, bro-­y boys. They’re bad news bears.

I did it. I took the seat on the other side of the aisle from him, also facing the water. But I didn’t look at him as the ship pulled out from the dock, Hyannis’s harbor falling away behind us. At least I had that much control.

An announcement came on about rules and regulations. To my right, women in tank tops with Greek letters poured White Claws into thermoses; boys in ACK baseball caps ate slimy-­looking ham sandwiches. I noticed my shoulders had drawn up again, high and tight, and forcibly relaxed them. I wasn’t being shipped off to Forks or anything, forced to handle pewter skies and brooding vampires. Plenty of people would give an arm and a leg to visit Nantucket.

Across the aisle, Chair Boy laughed.

A loud laugh. A look at me laugh.

I steadfastly did not look at him. I might have chosen my seat precisely to put myself in this position, but surely I had some willpower left? Surely I could keep myself from sliding down a slippery slope proven, time and again, to leave me feeling bad about myself.

He laughed once more.

I couldn’t help it. I couldn’t. I glanced over inquisitively. Our gazes collided.

Praise

“A story of self-discovery peppered with great banter [and] a minor historical mystery. Light, sweet, and a little salty: just beachy.” —Kirkus Reviews

“With an enchanting setting, sharp banter, and an emotionally grounded story, Reynolds' novel is sure to sweep teen romance fans off their feet.” Booklist

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