15-18 (throughout series)
Jewel (Boys in school)
Lucinda Jewel (mother)
"You're probably the only one who could stop her from going through with this wedding. But you better be damn sure you still want her, because if you don't, you're just effing up their lives for no reason. Don't eff up my best friend's life, Conrad. Don't be a selfish bastard like usual. Be the good guy she says you are. Let her go."
– Taylor advising Conrad to let go of Belly, We'll Always Have Summer
Taylor Jewel is Belly's best friend despite being her polar opposite. She is shown to be very popular among the boys, being the girl that boys "look at for that extra beat". She can be considered something of a flirt as she is completely unafraid to use her beauty to get any guy she wants and frequently jumps from boy to boy.
She and Belly have a rough friendship that is majorly strained when she badly treats Jeremiah during her first trip to Cousins when they were thirteen. However, the two manage to make amends and resume their friendship despite other obstacles they face. She is initially boy crazy, shallow and vain, but sheds her childish personality by the final novel of the series.
Appearance and Personality
In the earlier books, Taylor is shown to be boy crazy, somewhat superficial and extremely flirty even as a young girl. She puts a lot of work into her looks; using "half a bottle of Sun In" to get her hair very blonde and using push up bras to give herself a bigger chest. She is, however, very talented in fashion and therefore has very stylish and girly clothes. She is even mentioned to be able to "winter-ize" summer and spring time dresses to wear during colder seasons.
Belly often wondered how they were friends given they were polar opposites of each other. Despite their differences and fights, Taylor is shown to be a loyal friend throughout the series, often defending Belly. In the final novel, she bluntly tells Conrad to leave Belly alone when noticing that he said something to upset her, reminding him how he has done nothing but treat Belly like a toy and hurt her many times in the past. She ends her talk to him by warning him not "to eff up [her] best friend's life".
The Summer I Turned Pretty
Taylor is not physically present in the novel, but is seen in flashbacks. In them, she is taken to Cousins Beach when she and Belly were fourteen and is going to spend a week there. However, she is determined to hook up with either Steven, Conrad or Jeremiah. This upsets Belly, as Taylor is primarily focused on "having fun" with the boys than spending any time with her. Throughout her time there, Taylor is seen initially flirting with Conrad given his good looks, then kissing and leading Jeremiah on before getting caught kissing Steven.
Belly is enraged that Taylor did so since Jeremiah really liked her, which she knew, and calls her a slut. Belly's comment deeply hurts her, which drives her to leave the trip early on her own. Later, Jeremiah and Belly agree that bringing her there was a mistake. Belly states that while their friendship healed, it was never the same.
It's Not Summer Without You
She is seen spending time with Belly during her first summer in her hometown. A local guy clearly has feelings for Belly and Taylor desperately tries to pair Belly with him, despite her lack of interest in the guy personally. When Belly leaves with Jeremiah to find Conrad, Taylor attempts to convince her to wear more sexy clothing to get back at Conrad after roughly breaking up with her during her prom night sometime before. Belly says no, but allows her to "put a few things" in her bag. When Belly later opens her bags, she finds that Taylor completely switched all of her clothes for sexier ones, leaving her furious.
She and Belly have a falling out towards the climax of It's Not Summer Without You. This takes place when she accuses Belly of being "a crappy friend" when Belly does not want her to come to a party at the beach house, due to fearing she will only make it about her like the last time. Taylor claims that she "keeps her summer house and her summer boys all to herself and not sharing anything with [her]," which sparks an argument between the two girls. Belly angrily tells her off before hanging up.
We'll Always Have Summer
By the final novel, it is shown that despite their fight in the previous book, they managed to make peace when Belly goes to see her at her house and talking over clothes. Their friendship remains intact and the two resume their close friendship. They even end up attending the same college together. Taylor later comforts her over Jeremiah's infidelity and saying she'll "claw his face" for what he did. She even defends Belly's choice to be angry for what Jeremiah did despite having been "on a break" at the time, saying if her boyfriend so much as looked at another girl during a break, she'd be furious.
Taylor can also be seen throughout the course of the novel completely supporting Belly in her wedding plans, organizing and helping Belly pick her dress, even though she personally thinks the marriage is too fast at their age. She confronts Conrad after suspecting he said something to upset Belly, warning him to leave her alone as he has only ever hurt her in the past. Taylor says that she knows he still loves Belly, but advises him to let her go.
- "Yeah! Duh! I don't wear fake, Belly."
- "Hi, Ste-ven,"
- "Belly has lots of friends. Do I look like someone who would hang out with a loser?"
- "Oh my God, he's so cute."
- "I like my men dark."
- "And just what do you mean by that? That I'm not deep?(...) Don't answer that."
- "Just you wait. I'm gonna drag my nails across his face when I see him. I'll leave him so scarred no girl will ever hook up with him again."
- "You'd better me damn sure you still want her, because if you don't, you're just effing up their lives for no reason."
- "Go back to jacking off."
- "I'm not a slut."
- "I am gonna make that boy's head spin."
- "Belly, your boobs have really gotten big!"
- "Don't get twisted. I hate him to death right now. He effed up in a colossal way."
- "Belly is my oldest friend in the world. Of course it's my business."
- "Are you still trying to tell me you don't care?"
- "That Zeta Pi slut."
- "Do you think you'll take him back?"
- "If some guy cheated on me while we were on a break, if he so much as looked at another girl, no. He'd be a donzo."
- "It's gonna be an apocalypse. Like dead bodies. Like blood in the streets. And when I say blood, I mean your blood."
- "You're effing kidding me. You're engaged?!"
- "You can hardly even tell she's three months pregnant."
- "He's not that hot. He just thinks he is."
- "No. Sit your ass back down."
- "I would be willing to bet money that she was crying because of you. Again. Nice one, Conrad."
- "Do you have any idea how badly you've hurt her, over and over again?"
- "You treat her like a toy that you just pick up and play with whenever you feel like it. You're like a little boy. Someone took what was yours, and you don't like that one bit, so you swoop in and shit all over everything just because you can."
- She played the violin as a young girl before her parents got divorced, who let her quit because of "divorce guilt".
- She and Belly are best friends in the trilogy despite being complete opposites and not always getting along. Taylor is a girly girl and won't hesitate to flaunt her physical beauty and flirt with various guys whereas Belly is a tomboy who is rather shy and prefers comfortable and relaxed clothes. The latter part annoys Taylor as she is constantly urging Belly to become more open and experiment with a flirtier side with boys.
- It is never explained how she and Belly became friends, although likely through school.
- Belly reveals during the second novel that Taylor lost her virginity "to a guy who shaves his legs". This appears to be something that Taylor is not fond of remembering as she takes it as a heavy insult. It is later implied that she remains sexually active into We'll Always Have Summer as she tells Belly - who is preparing for her wedding night with Jeremiah and losing her virginity - that the first "couple of times" were physically painful for her and not enjoyable.
- Like Belly and Steven as well as the Fisher boys, her parents are divorced.
- In two out of the three novels, she and Belly always have a rough fight that nearly ruins their friendship before making up in the following novel. The only one where they did not fight was in We'll Always Have Summer.
- Her favorite novel is Black Beauty, although she won't admit it.
- She loves ketchup "with everything" such as eggs, pasta and pizza.
- She has a younger sister named Bridget who is only mentioned once in the series and never seen.
- Taylor somewhat foreshadowed the love triangle between Belly and the Fisher boys during her brief stay at Cousins. When she was playing Truth or Dare with the group, she declared for the boys to "take a good look at everyone's favorite little sister" and told them that Belly was "turning hot before [their] very eyes". Even though they laughed it off as a joke, it is in the following summer in The Summer I Turned Pretty that both Fisher boys did indeed take notice of her newfound physical beauty and began to fall for her. Also ironically, other boys at Cousins Beach that knew Belly since she was a kid also noticed and began flirting with her as well.
- Taylor was Belly's only friend who called her on her birthday in August to wish and sing her a happy birthday at exactly 9:02 every single year.
- While Taylor had been Belly's closest friend for most the series, Belly later names Taylor as being her "oldest friend". She instead names her college friend Anika in We'll Always Have Summer as her true "best friend" due to sharing a deeper emotional bond with her than Taylor. However, Taylor still considers Belly to be her best friend and the girls remain close to where Belly even chooses her to be her maid of honor during her engagement to Jeremiah.
- She has a younger cousin who has Down Syndrome.