Amy has isolated herself from all her friends, and to make life even more dispiriting than it already is her mum has upped stakes and moved across America - pretty much as far away from their California home as you can get and stay on land. The plan is that Amy will follow her, driving across country with the son of a family friend. A family friend who not only is disconcertingly cute but who has an agenda of his own, and enough emotional baggage to fill the trunk of the car with some to spare. Though that's still less than Amy's...
So, what you have is a road trip with two almost grown-up teens, a trip complete with pictures of receipts from diners, tourist photos, diary pages, playlists of music that they listen to whilst on the road, broken-hearts, grief, despair and laughter as well as tears. But put all that together and what you get is one of the most warm-hearted stories I've read in ages. It's a story of hope that shows how life's complexities can be battled through and how friendship really is the most important thing you can find. I loved it, and thought about the characters long after the book was done.
Danny was sent the advance copy and he didn't fancy it, so maybe the cover appeals more to females than males, but certainly the content is readable by both and isn't cloying or girly or romancy. Or maybe it's a perfect example of don't judge a book by its cover (though I infinitely prefer this to the American version!).
Looking back (I read this a couple of weeks back) I want to re-read it already. In fact I want to pick it up and take it on a road trip, listening to Roger's playlists, adding in a little Elvis and eating at roadside diners. For a first time writer, Ms Matson? Well done, this is bliss in a book!
Oh, and again no vampires/ghosts/werewolves/angels! Yay!
4 weeks ago