Monday, February 13, 2012
Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.
A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.
In her signature pitch-perfect style, Sarah Dessen explores the hearts of two lonely people learning to connect.
For the current blog hop and because it's so close to Valentine's day, I made everyone who entered tell me the name of a character from a book they have fallen in love with. I've actually been thinking about this phenomenon for a while because I want to do a post on my personal blog about all the characters I have fallen in love with over the years. I guess what's stopping me is being unsure whether my characters are quality enough to blog about. But, hey, you can't help who you fall in love with, right?
Well, if I ever wrote the definitive list, Eli from Along for the Ride would be right near the top of it. Eli has already worked through a lot of his guilt, and he can't help himself when it comes to sharing what he's learned with Auden. But he is all too aware that he doesn't have all the answers. Eli doesn't mix romance in right away, though you know it has to be a factor, because he knows neither of them are in the right place for it. I really think that was a conscious if not deliberate decision on his part. Eli has such an endearing mix of stregth and vulnerability that I think about this story long after I've read the book and find myself wishing I knew him.
Eli's vulnerability lends Auden's character strength, which is nice so that you don't get the feeling she's just another annoying teen in a YA read who doesn't know anything and never will, a dangerous line YA authors approach when they try to be realistic.
If you haven't read any of Dessen's books, I highly recommend them. Expect to be uplifted and to learn something about yourself. I haven't read them all, just three or four. I've liked everything I've read, but not as much as the cute covers promised me I would. But...I blame the covers for that, not the content.
Remember, the Follower Love Giveaway Hop ends tomorrow. To enter, go Here and tell us who you love in literature!