Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

This is the kind of YA book that I just love–a nice solid story with emotion, a bit of humor, and some quirkiness.  I’m sure this novel is inviting comparisons to Sarah Dessen, but let’s look at it on its own.  Amy’s world was shattered when her father died a few months ago.  Her mom stuck her twin brother in rehab and moved across the country to set up a new home for them.  Now that school is out Amy needs to make it to the East Coast to join her.  The thing is that since her dad died she doesn’t drive, so her mom recruits a family friend’s son to drive her.  Amy hasn’t seen Roger since they were little, so she is pretty surprised that he turns out to be a super hot college age guy (really Amy? I’ve read enough to not have been at all surprised by that development.)  Amy’s mom has created an efficient ant boring itinerary for them but in a move that surprises Amy, they decide to take some detours along the way.  And thus begins their road trip.  I love a good road trip, as well as any novel about a road trip.  Like any good road trip this book had snacks, great music, interesting sights along the way, and long and revealing conversations.  I loved it that throughout it had the look of a journal with postcards, receipts, and photos.  They weren’t just fun to look at, they actually added to the depth of the story.

Along the way Amy and Roger grow close to each other and open up about their lives and of course it is just what they need.  I suppose that is all pretty typical for this type of journey novel, but I really liked it and thought it was really well written.  Extremely satisfying!

You know what is really sticking with me from this book? That Amy had a totally regular happy go lucky life and then the whole thing changed in a matter of minutes in a terribly tragic accident.  I can’t stop thinking about that and have been a little nervous driving lately!


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