Rather Be Reading's gushing love for Second Chance Summer, Morgan Matson's second book. I very rarely purchase a book unless it's an author that I already adore; however, after reading her review, and then hearing that Hannah @ So Obsessed With was loving the book as well, I placed my very first order on Book Depository. Then, Jaime @ The Perpetual Page-Turner posted this amazing list of dates inspired by books. I couldn't order this one and wait for it to ship as well (although the Book Depository is cheaper, it takes SO MUCH LONGER for my books to arrive than my Chapters orders!!), so I put it on hold at the library.
One of the things that I absolutely ADORED about this book is all the little "extras" that are included. The book begins with a copy of Amy's report card, then some e-mail messages. We're then launched into the story and quickly learn that Amy is not coping too well after the loss of her father. Her mother wants her to leave California and move to Connecticut and has planned for her to drive out with Roger, a boy from Amy's childhood. An itinerary has been planned, hotel rooms have been booked and all Amy needs to do is bid a fond farewell to her home in California and climb in the car.
Although Amy and Roger knew one another when they were little, Amy barely remembers him. She's struggling with her own grief and reluctant to open up, preferring to sit quietly and let Roger be the driver and the DJ. Roger tells Amy that a road trip isn't complete without snacks and tunes. After a quick stop for snacks, Amy suddenly realizes that she doesn't want to go on the prescribed road trip that her mother has planned, and instead her and Roger set off on a trans-American adventure that will change them both forever.
The only small criticism that I have for this book, is that I felt that it needed a map so that I could follow along with Amy and Roger's path. I'm Canadian, and I'll admit that my American geography leaves a little to be desired. I kept jumping online to find out where certain states were, and what's connected to what.
I don't want to say much more about the plot of the book, because it's so wonderful and charming and well-written that you really must read it for yourself. Scattered throughout the book are photos, receipts and music playlists. I LOVED the music playlists -- isn't that the BEST part of any road trip? My husband and I are planning a road trip to Alberta in August, and we love putting together our playlists prior to departure. It's more important than packing, in my opinion.
So, if you're looking for the perfect summer read, look no further than this book. It will wow you, break your heart a little, make you cry a little, and then leave you feeling like you've been on an amazing journey of love.