I laughed, I cried, I... wanted to go on a road trip?
Amy's life is irrevocably changed in the aftermath of her father's death in a car accident back in March. The book begins just after the school year ends. Amy's mother is uprooting what is left of her family (17 year old Amy and her twin brother Charlie) and moving them all the way across the country from Orange County, CA, to Connecticut. She's already made the move out there and now she needs Amy to drive their car across the country. The problem is that Amy hasn't driven since the accident, so her mom has enlisted Roger, a rising college sophomore, to drive Amy out there. Amy hasn't seen Roger since he was a kid, but once she sees him... well, let's just say things start looking the littlest bit better (read: Roger is a hottie).
Once Amy and Roger set off on the road trip, one that has been meticulously planned by Amy's mother, they decide to take one detour, and then another. Pretty soon they've taken control of the road trip, leading them to much more exciting places than Akron, Ohio and Terre Haute, Indiana (Amy's mom's projected resting points).
Matson has a way of writing these characters--not just Roger and Amy, but the supporting cast that gets fleshed out during the detours--so that they feel absolutely, breathing-life real. I couldn't help falling for Roger, with his boyish obsession with explorers and understandable fixation on his recent ex, and I wanted so badly for Amy to come to terms with her father's accidental death and reconcile with her family. And I loved Roger's playlists, as well as the receipts, snapshots, and other road trip ephemera interspersed throughout the book. They made me feel like I went on the road trip too!
This trip is so worth the ride. Read if you like Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, Sara Zarr, etc. I think this one's going to find a LOT fans.