After breaking up with her bad-news boyfriend, Reagan O’Neill is ready to leave her rebellious ways behind. . . and her best friend, country superstar Lilah Montgomery, is nursing a broken heart of her own. Fortunately, Lilah’s 24-city tour is about to kick off, offering a perfect opportunity for a girls-only summer of break-up ballads and healing hearts. But when Matt Finch joins the tour as its opening act, his boy-next-door charm proves difficult for Reagan to resist, despite her vow to live a drama-free existence. This summer, Reagan and Lilah will navigate the ups and downs of fame and friendship as they come to see that giving your heart to the right person is always a risk worth taking. A fresh new voice in contemporary romance, Emery Lord’s gorgeous writing hits all the right notes.
Publishes in US: April 15th 2014 by Walker
Genre: YA Contemp
Source: Bloomsbury via Netgalley
Buy it: Amazon and Barnes & Noble!
Author stalk away: ~site
I wanted to read Open Road summer because it sounds like a great book for summer, and even though it is just now spring in US, I am longing for the warmer days, and it sounded like this book would be perfect. I was hoping for a good mixture of light and heavy, friendship and romance, and the wonderful cover for the book also drew my attention.
You got a sense of the characters pretty quickly in Open Road Summer, Reaghan has been in some trouble, and made some bad choices, and Dee with stage name Lilah is the shy inside sweet girl that fame hasn't changed yet. They balance each other out, and while they have a long standing friendship, we clearly see how it plays out for them. The support and how they are just there together is wonderful to read about. I loved the focus on their friendship, how they are there for each other no matter what and they can transition from deep and meaningful to hilarious like zipping one in a suitcase in seconds flat.
I am a hit or miss with roadtrip stories, as well as stories with the musician as main character or romance interest, but the combos in this one worked out for me and avoided some of the cliches and troupes that usually can turn me against them.
Matt is the romantic interest, and I felt the attraction and chemistry between him and Reaghan right away. I think he found it refreshing that she told it like it was and was more interested in her friendship with Dee than being a fangirl over him. Matt is a genuine good guy, and he's funny, takes Reaghan's sarcasm and the walls she has built up around herself to keep from being hurt again. At first they have to keep everything secret because Matt and Lilah are "dating" in the eyes of the public and paparazzi because they twisted a picture and it was taking down Lilah's clean and wholesome image, and a relationship could make that from taking over publicity. It gives an interesting look into the life of a celebrity, how their lives can be twisted and as a consumer it is just easy to believe what we are fed. It also shows the fragility at times of life in general, how one seemingly inconsequential choice can make such huge waves, but also the strength of human spirit to overcome what keeps being thrown at us.
Matt and Reaghan both have some hard things in the past and it is nice to see them finally let down some walls and let each other in.
Matt and Dee have this sibling type relationship, they tease each other, are comfortable with one another, and they manage to use their long time friendship to help bolster the impression of their relationship to the media. But it is hurting Reaghan knowing that her and Matt share something. But she struggles a lot with the effect it would have on her friendship and the perception of her best friend, and I so appreciate that this is a huge thing for her, and she has learned from her past and is trying to make better choices and decisions. It was good to know that Dee has her own love interest at home, and that thread makes the story even more layered. Even though Dee and Jimmy had broken up because he thought it was better for her career, we see that Dee has held onto her deep feeling for him, and she loves that he saw her before she became a star and was an awkward and gangly girl instead of poised and together country singer.
The ending was well done. It wrapped things up well for the characters but it still kept a realistic ending. There were hopes and dreams yet to be fulfilled but that is life for a teen. I like that it gave a glimpse of what could be for the characters but also wrapping up the themes and threads from this one. This turned out to be just the read I needed, a great balance of light with emotions, and a warm summer read.
My question to you, my lovely readers:
Do you go on roadtrips?