Author: Morgan Matson
Genre(s): Realistic Fiction, Romance, Hard Topics
Age Level: YA
Page Count: 344
Perspective: First Person (female)
Summary: Amy Curry thinks her life sucks. Her mom decides to move from California to Connecticut to start anew--just in time for Amy's senior year. Her dad recently died in a car accident. So Amy embarks on a road trip to escape from it all, driving cross-country from the home she's always known toward her new life. Joining Amy on the road trip is Roger, the son of Amy's mother's old friend. Amy hasn't seen him in years, and she is less than thrilled to be driving across the country with a guy she barely knows. So she's surprised to find that she is developing a crush on him. At the same time, she's coming to terms with her father's death and how to put her own life back together after the accident. Told in traditional narrative as well as scraps from the road--diner napkins, motel receipts, postcards--this is the story of one girl's journey to find herself.
Review: This book was a good realistic fiction book. It wasn't anything major, but it was a good summer read (a little too late for that, but...), the type of thing that's fun to read by the pool or hanging out on a lazy day.
The sadness and death part of this book was better written than other books I've read, and I was glad to not have to suffer through cliches. Roger's situation was different than any other book I've read, and it was a good compliment to Amy's own pain and sadness, though it wasn't so heavy it dragged the book down into a pity party. And while it wasn't so well-written that I felt empathy for the characters, I did feel sympathy, which is more than some books have managed.
On the other side of things, this book also managed lighthearted- and funniness, in the situations Amy and Roger found themselves in, and the conversations they had as well. I was laughing and smiling just as much as I was frowning in sadness, and few books have managed that.
A good realistic fiction book I would definitely recommend!
"Someone had etched into [the diner table] 'Ryan loves Megan always'... I wondered how anyone could have been so sure about a concept so tenuous and impossible as always that they'd be willing to carve it into a tabletop." - Page 199
"You've got to have pride in your home. You are where you're from. Otherwise, you're always going to be lost." - Page 174
"I understood in a flash why, on the Greyhound sign, Arrivals and Departures were right next to each other. Because sometimes, like in that moment, they can mean exactly the same thing." - Page 321
"Someone just told me that you can't let things stop you because you're afraid." - Page 249