I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Joyride by Anna Banks
Published by Fiewel & Friends on June 2, 2015
Genres: Young Adult
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble
A popular guy and a shy girl with a secret become unlikely accomplices for midnight pranking, and are soon in over their heads—with the law and with each other—in this sparkling standalone from NYT-bestselling author Anna Banks.
It’s been years since Carly Vega’s parents were deported. She lives with her brother, studies hard, and works at a convenience store to contribute to getting her parents back from Mexico.
Arden Moss used to be the star quarterback at school. He dated popular blondes and had fun with his older sister, Amber. But now Amber’s dead, and Arden blames his father, the town sheriff who wouldn’t acknowledge Amber's mental illness. Arden refuses to fulfill whatever his conservative father expects.
All Carly wants is to stay under the radar and do what her family expects. All Arden wants is to NOT do what his family expects. When their paths cross, they each realize they’ve been living according to others. Carly and Arden’s journey toward their true hearts—and one another—is funny, romantic, and sometimes harsh.
Joyride is the first book I’ve read by Anna Banks and I have mixed feelings about this book.
What did I like?
For a Young Adult book the plot was more serious than I was expecting. The storyline was unique in dealing with immigration and mental illness. These are sensitive issues and I felt the author did a good job in expressing the impact it had in Carly and Arden’s lives. The plot twist was surprising and added some excitement to the story.
I also liked seeing the character growth in Carly. She’s been working hard to help get her parents back to the US but also keeping up with her school work. I found it annoying that her family put so much pressure on her to support them when it should have been the other way around. Her goal is to get a scholarship for college so seeing her finally stand up for herself was a relief.
What didn’t I like?
The first half of the book was at a slow pace so I felt bored and almost gave up. There was so much focus on Carly working and the pranks that I was confused with the direction the author was going in. The synopsis states there was a romance but I wasn’t feeling it. It has a really slow build up then all of a sudden it felt rushed. I thought Carly and Arden didn’t make a good connection. It took them forever to talk about their feelings and most of their time was spent on their pranks.
Joyride is written in dual point of views which is nice to get a better insight to the main characters. But I thought the POV changes between Carly and Arden weren’t clear and at times it took me a while to figure out whose POV it was.
I did enjoy the plot but it felt like there were gaps in the ending. I would have preferred more details at the end and some of the beginning chapters edited out. It would have made the story flow more smoothly and more interesting.
Overall I think Joyride was an ok book. As a Young Adult contemporary fiction the plot is interesting and thought provoking. But don’t read this for a swoon worthy romance.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2015 New Release Challenge