{Review} Amy & Roger's Epic Detour

12:00 AM

Title: Amy & Roger's Epic Detour

Author: Morgan Matson
Number of Pgs. 344 Hardcover 
Publication date: May 4, 2010
Genre: YA
How I got the copy: Library

From Goodreads:

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 country with a guy she barely knows.  So she's surprised to find that she's 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--dinner napkins, motel receipts, postcards--this is the story of one girl's journey to find herself.

I'm going to try a new way of reviewing that I saw over at Making the Grade.  It breaks the book down and makes it easier to rate.  The way it works is each category gets a score out of ten points.  Then you add them all up + 50 (50% automatically for each book) and that's your score out of 100.

 Fans of Sarah Dessen will like this one.
-  Cute, fun, great end to summer read.
-  touches on a serious topic-forgiving yourself and moving on.

Plot 7/10: The plot was kind of predictable in this story, but I at times I didn't mind.  I loved watching Amy and Roger get to know each other and help each other move on.  I just wish their "romance" could have come sooner.  I kept waiting for something to happen and nothing did.  I liked that we had no idea where they would go next.

Characters 6/10: A few characters annoyed me...like Amy's mom.  She runs from her feelings instead of talking about them with Amy.  So when Amy does the same thing her mom gets mad at her.  How hypocritical?  Roger lacked depth.  We don't really learn that much about him and he's not very unique at all.  The only thing I really learned about his was his music choice and love of explorers.  Some of the minor characters were my favorite though and I liked the way they contributed to their journey. 

Setting 8/10: I loved getting to read about parts of America I always wondered about.  The author has taken road trips so I'm guessing a lot of the setting was places she's actually been.  I wished we saw more of Amy's life once she gets to Connecticut.  Halfway through the book there was less description of the towns they were in and more focus on the character's which made me sad.

Pacing 9/10: Even though the beginning is kind of slow, it really picked up towards the middle.  I found myself flying through chapters.  They basically visit a new town every few chapters where they meet fun characters and take steps towards moving on from their individual problems and learning about each other.  Every few chapters Amy has a flashback to before the accident and we get to piece together what happened that day.  I thought it was clever how the author didn't just tell you up front, but we go on the journey of forgiving herself with Amy.  

Style 8/10: I LOVED the pictures and diary feel of this book.  I wonder if the author really took those pictures.  The playlists, notes about each state, and pictures are what really made me enjoy this book I think.  The only thing I wanted more of was interaction between Amy and Roger.  You'd think since they're both in title it'd be all about them, but Amy has lots of inner dialogue and interactions with minor characters.  I wanted to see some romance!

Final Thoughts: I probably won't read this one again, but I'm glad that I got it out of the library.  I think it'd be a perfect book to read before teens go back to school.  A last road trip before school starts.
Total: 88/100 

“Tomorrow will be better.”
“But what if it’s not?” I asked.
“Then you say it again tomorrow. Because it might be. You never know, right? At some point, tomorrow will be better.” 
― Morgan MatsonAmy and Roger's Epic Detour

“He stood and looked at me for a moment, taking in my outfit. "You look hot."
"What? Me?" I stammered, completely flummoxed.
"Yeah," he said, still looking at me.
"Oh. Um, thank you. I mean, not that you don’t, but I’m not sure that you should—I mean …"
"Oh, no," Roger said quickly, and I could see that he was blushing again. "No. I mean—I meant what you’re wearing. Are you going to be too warm?” 
― Morgan MatsonAmy and Roger's Epic Detour


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