EXCLUSIVE: Read an excerpt from ‘Just for the Summer’ by Abby Jimenez

Abby Jimenez's sixth book, "Just for the Summer," is out April 2, 2024 and the baker-turned-romance author couldn't be happier to share it with the world.

Jimenez revealed in an interview with TODAY that this was the most challenging book she's written to date.

"I was going through some of my own health issues when I was editing that book. My brain was not in a place to work on that book, so it was very much a time crunch," Jimenez says, adding that a 30-stop book tour made it even harder for her to find time to sit down and write.

"It wasn’t really that this plot was challenging for me. I didn’t protect my creative space enough to be able to feel unrushed."

Like many, Jimenez often finds herself down a rabbit hole of AITA Reddit threads, which sparked the idea for her new book.

"I’m obsessed with them. They’re just so fun to read. I just thought, 'Wouldn’t this be such a fun way to kick off this story?'"

Jimenez shared a brief synopsis during an exclusive interview with TODAY.

"They meet through an AITA Reddit thread. Justin does a post about a little disagreement he got into with his best friend and in the post, he mentions that every woman he dates goes on to find their happy ever after when they break up. Emma has the same problem. She ends up reading this post and they jokingly decide that if they date each other, when they break up, their curses will cancel each other out and they’ll both go on to find their happy ever afters," she explains.

Like all of Jimenez's books, she recommends that readers read the trigger warnings in the first few pages before settling into chapter one. "This touches on the effects that your childhood can have on your relationships as an adult," Jimenez says.

While all of her books are written as stand-alone novels, they exist in the same universe. To get the most enjoyment out of "Just for the Summer," Jimenez recommends starting with her 2022 book, "Part of Your World" followed by "Yours Truly."

Get a sneak peak of "Just for the Summer" in this exclusive book excerpt.

Read an excerpt of 'Just for the Summer'

Benny and Brad were both in serious relationships now. I didn’t like fifth wheeling it when their girlfriends were around— and they usually were.

They were starting to do the couples thing for all the trips and birthdays. They were all going up to Lutsen in October to go hiking. They asked me if I wanted to go, but I didn’t. Not alone.

I puffed my cheeks and blew a breath. “I’m just getting burnt out on dating, I think.”

“I hated dating,” Benny said.

Brad leaned back in the booth. “You lucked out. Met Jane through your sister. And you know she’s ride or die too ’cause she was with you before you even had kidneys.”

Benny laughed. He’d had a kidney transplant two years ago, donated by Jane’s brother Jacob.

Brad took a swallow of his drink. “Ask that nurse out. Go wherever she is. Pitch the idea to her, she might be into it.”

I eyed him. “Pitch the idea?”

“Yeah,” Brad said. “She dates you, you guys break up, and she rides happily into the sunset too. It’s a win- win. Seriously. This is your chance. If you don’t do something you’re gonna spend the rest of your life sending women on to their forever families and never getting one for you.”

“Ha.” I finished my mozzarella stick. “You know, it’s not a science. Not every woman I date goes on to get married.”

“No, it only happens with anyone you like enough to ask out more than twice. Look,” he said, leaning onto the table. “You know I’m not a superstitious person. I don’t believe in magic or hexes or curses, but this thing that’s going on with you? It is real and it’s been happening for three years and it’s going to keep happening if you don’t do something. Maybe this is the something.”

I shook my head. “Why do I care if the women who didn’t work out for me go on to be happy? I don’t see why I need to put a stop to it.”

“Because every girl you’re serious enough about to date more than a few weeks is cosmically destined for someone else?”

I paused and stared at him.

Brad looked me in the eye. “You will never find someone as long as all the women you date aren’t actually meant for you. You’re not their soulmate. Their soulmate is the person they meet after you. It’s decided the minute it starts. They are literally fated not to be The One. Think about it.”

But I didn’t have to think about it. Because the second he said it, I knew it was true.

He was right. Ever since I noticed the streak, there was always something…missing. Nobody ever felt right. Not enough chemistry or I just lost interest after a few dates. I didn’t think much of it. Just figured it wasn’t a fit. But now that he mentioned it…

“Message her,” Brad said, going on. “Try it. What can it hurt?”

Benny was nodding.

I had actually thought about her. I’d checked once or twice to see if she’d messaged me again. She hadn’t. The last message was me telling her it was nice chatting with her, three days ago. Trying to keep talking to her was a dead end if she lived somewhere else. But I don’t know. Maybe Brad had a point. What could it hurt to try? Worst- case scenario, I’d spend some time and money and have no connection with her. What was new? I was already doing that with every date that didn’t pan out anyway.

Screw it. I opened my phone and started typing a message to Emma16_dilemma.

This article was originally published on TODAY.com