by Morgan Matson
The Short Story
After her dad dies, Amy's mother moves the family cross country. Amy isn't thrilled to leave home before her senior year, and even less excited to make the drive with Roger, an old family friend she hasn't seen in years. She's shut herself off from everyone since the loss, but knows she won't be able to keep it up on the trip. As they make the long, eventful drive, Amy learns more about Roger and herself. Cute, scrapbooky summer read.
Come for the...
vicarious adventure. I love a good road trip, and this has all the essentials: maps, quirky stops, postcards, random landscapes, regional deliciousness. I liked that the book had an occasional scrapbook quality to it. Even the receipts tell a story, and the little details added a lot to the book. Plus I just got back from a long-ish roadtrip from Utah to California, so much of the beginning of the book was familiar to me. (And no matter what road you take across the width of Nevada, you're not going to see much.)
But if you're not a roadtripper, you can still enjoy the book. The characters are excellent. Amy reminded me a lot of Macy from The Truth About Forever. She's in a very similar circumstance, and an older, artistic guy helps her out (while they eat various tasty things). Amy's a good character who can't really deal with her situation. But even when her thoughts felt illogical she was still likeable.
Roger, who has a dumb name but is a good guy; Graceland; the little illustrations; haiku; and the playlists (youtube version here)
Don't think about this too hard
- The relationship in the book moves pretty fast. It's not exactly insta-love, but I was surprised by that since the book is only supposed to happen over a few days. Also, Roger = over 18. Amy = under 18. I just told myself they were both over 18 so I wouldn't have to contemplate Roger going to jail and all.
The Big Three
Language: there isn't much swearing, but when characters do swear, they really swear. Several f-words
Sex and Stuff: sleepovers, kissing, and some sexual content (see Don't think about this too hard)
Violence: not an issue