Tuesday, February 12, 2013

ARC Review: How My Summer Went Up In Flames

Titles: How My Summer Went Up In Flames
Author: Jennifer Salvato Doktorski
Genre: YA Contemp, Romance

Expected Release: May 7th

See it at Goodreads

First she lost her heart. Then she lost her mind. And now she’s on a road trip to win back her ex. This debut novel’s packed with drama and romance!

Rosie’s always been impulsive. She didn’t intend to set her cheating ex-boyfriend’s car on fire. And she never thought her attempts to make amends could be considered stalking. So when she’s served with a temporary restraining order on the first day of summer vacation, she’s heartbroken—and furious.

To put distance between Rosie and her ex, Rosie’s parents send her on a cross-country road trip with responsible, reliable neighbor Matty and his two friends. Forget freedom of the road, Rosie wants to hitchhike home and win back her ex. But her determination starts to dwindle with each passing mile. Because Rosie’s spark of anger? It may have just ignited a romance with someone new…

Rosie is in a bit of a dilemma from the start. She’s found herself in trouble with the law, her ex, his family, and has been served a temporary restraining order after causing his car to set on fire. Well, isn’t that a rough patch?

To keep from any more harm, she then goes off on a road trip with her childhood best friend and his two buddies. The more distance between her and her ex, the better is what her and her family thinks. As I progressed into this story, I really enjoyed the witty humor and banter between the characters…but the set-up for the road trip may have been slightly hard to take serious when it comes to a seventeen year old girl and three guys. Or maybe I’m just an over-protective parent? However, Rosie’s mom and her never-ending check-ins did seem realistic. I did want to imagine the characters older at times, though. But that was just me.

I admit I wasn’t fond of Rosie in the beginning of the story. Her attitude turned me off at times--clingy, over-reacting, judgmental--but she developed through passing time and grew into a likeable character that I wanted more of by the end.

The trip and places were fun. I could easily imagine most of the stops--most particularly places I’d even been to on vacation before--and I enjoyed reading about the mini-adventures along the way. I didn’t really see the romance coming at all until closer to the end. I mean, I knew it was building…the tension could be felt between Rosie and Logan… but not much gave way until closer to the end. Is this bad? Of course not. I wasn’t bombarded by insta-love and that made me happy.

I also found it cute that I could practically imagine the music along the way. It was a topic picked on often.

It was an entertaining ride-along of a read and I look forward to reading more of Doktorski’s work in the future.

P.S. That cover is one of my favorites this year, too! So adorable!



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