Just for the Summer

Forever: Grand Central. Apr. 2024. 432p. ISBN 9781538704431. pap. $17.99. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
Justin and Emma are cursed. Everyone they break up with finds “the One” soon after, going on to a life of wedded bliss. But if Justin and Emma date each other, maybe the curses will cancel each other out? That’s what Justin pitches to Emma after meeting her online. Emma, a traveling nurse who rarely stays in one place for more than six weeks, thinks it’s worth a shot. That’s how she and her best friend Maddy find themselves in Justin’s state of Minnesota, working at a hospital. It’s only for the summer and supposed to be casual, but Justin quickly falls for Emma. Unfortunately, after a childhood of neglect and abandonment, Emma’s heart is locked away. The story begins as does the relationship, breezy and easy. As the characters reveal more of themselves in alternating chapters, readers get a front-row, intimate view of each protagonist’s thoughts, feelings, and inner conflicts. Undiagnosed mental health concerns, toxic relationships, and PTSD are treated sensitively and realistically.
VERDICT This witty, emotion-filled novel from Jimenez (Yours Truly) isn’t one to just read, it’s one to sink into. Hand it to fans of Helen Hoang and Christina Lauren.
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