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Teen Book Review

At the beginning of Morgan Matson’s epic debut, we find Amy Curry feeling isolated, guilty, and depressed. Her mother has left California to start a new life in Connecticut, and her brother has been sent to a rehab center in North Carolina. Oh, and she blames herself for her dad’s recent death. Having been the driver that fateful day, Amy no longer gets behind the wheel. The problem is that she must drive to Connecticut to start the new life her mom has already begun. This is where Matson’s second title-character enters. Roger, an old family friend, is in college and has his own reasons for this road trip. His ex-girlfriend has been avoiding him, and he just wants to see her. Of course, spending a lot of time with another girl can change things.

Filled with pictures and postcards from Amy’s scrapbook and Roger’s music playlists, this teen novel probes into a high school girl’s emotions of guilt, isolation, and immense grief, and how she deals with those feelings. It also closely follows the thread of her family relationships and their evolutions. But it isn’t all mushy feelings. As the two travel across the country, readers are launched on a cross-country journey as well, learning about and becoming immersed in the places Amy and Roger go. This book is packed with adventure, introspection, and of course, romance, and anyone who enjoys those types of novels are sure to love this one. Amy’s physical and emotional journey is sure to be one to remember.