31 May 2012

Along for the Ride

Author: Sarah Dessen
Series: Stand Alone
Genres: Realistic, Summer, Young Adult, Romance
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Released: 16 June 2009
Summary: via goodreads.com 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.
My Review: I love Sarah Dessen books, mostly because they all follow a familiar pattern, and Along for the Ride is no different. However, maybe because I loved some of Dessen’s other novels so much more or maybe because this is set in a different town than the atypical “Sarah-Land” I had a little bit of a harder time.
Sure, the Eli/Auden relationship is incredible and I loved reading it, as is the insomnia (this made me wish I had insomnia) and I loved the bike riding thing, and the fact that both characters had some pretty big issues that they needed to overcome, however the problem for me with Along for the Ride is the fact that I felt like all of these scenes were being checked off of a list.
Normally I don’t feel this way about Dessen’s books, normally the flow is effortless and lovely and completely enamoring, but this time around I didn’t feel that way I felt like “oh, I’ve reached X amount of words, insert first kiss where” and so on. There was just something about this one that felt so much more chemical than the others.
I always recommend Sarah Dessen books, especially to girls in high school because I feel like Dessen really gets things right, but I would probably recommend The Truth About Forever, This Lullaby, or Just Listen before this one. This one felt like Sarah Dessen meets The Hills. I liked it, but I didn’t love it.

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