Kirkus Star


Age Range: 14 & up
Email this review


Best friends leave New York City for the first time and take a transformative road trip to Los Angeles.

Sixteen-year-old Eva Roth's penchant for reading romance novels (118 at last count) is termed "your ultimate rebellion" by her mom, a women’s studies professor. Eva is a poet, and she used to write alongside her beloved father, but when he died in a plane crash two years earlier, she stopped writing. Rabb eloquently gets grief right in this compassionate, perceptive, and poignant story, deftly leavened with irreverent humor, of a girl in conflict with her mother. Poems by Elizabeth Bishop, Emily Dickinson, Adrienne Rich, Nikki Giovanni, Marie Howe, and others are so beautifully integrated into the first-person narrative that the poetry comes alive. Eva's burgeoning, heart-stopping relationship with senior Will Freeman initially helps her begin to find a way out of grief, as does her smart, empathetic best friend, Annie Kim, with whom she can share the absurdity of it all. But Will unexpectedly moves to California, and with Annie's participation, Eva comes up with a truly creative road-trip plan—one in which America, land of endless possibilities, serves as a backdrop for unexpected love. And love is really what this remarkable story is all about.

Wise, inspiring, and ultimately uplifting—not to be missed. (Fiction. 14 & up)

Pub Date: May 26th, 2015
ISBN: 978-0-06-232237-1
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 2015