Friday, February 26, 2016

review: joyride, by anna banks

Author: Anna Banks
Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult, Romance
Pub Date: June 2nd, 2015
Publisher: Feiwel And Friends
Pages: 288
Source: 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.

*i was sent this copy of joyride (and some awesome bookmarks & bookplates!) by anna banks in exchange for an honest review. in no way does this affect my opinion of the book itself*


to start off, i'd like to say thanks again to anna for sending me a HC copy of her book! i received the book + signed bookmarks and bookplates in the mail last week and was super excited to dive into this book!

joyride follows the story of two teenagers, carly and arden, who are complete opposites. carly is a girl who studies hard in school, gets good grades, and works long shifts at her job. arden is a boy who is a total prankster, football dropout, and doesn't try too hard in school. when their lives intertwine, it creates one heck of a joyride (see what i did there?) 

carly, for me, was a very relatable character, and i think this really helped me better understand situations from her point of view. i really liked the fact that she wasn't one of those stereotypical-perfect-dream-girls. she felt like a true person, a true character, someone more realistic, and i loved that about her. she wasn't worried about looks or popularity. she valued family over anything, and as everyone knows, family comes first. 

there was rarely a point in the book where i was bored. anna did a great job of keeping the story consistently flowing all while keeping it interesting. i especially liked the fact that she created so many characters with unique characteristics, like carly, arden, julio, mr. shackleford, and arden's father. often times, when a book has lots of characters who are similar to each other, it doesn't seem as interesting, but joyride was the exact opposite. 

however, there were a few things about this book that i disliked. it had a couple grammar errors, and this is one of my biggest pet peeves in books. especially when it is a spelling error. c'mon, people!

the story was slow-paced in some places, and faster in other places. i think this makes a book hard to get into, but once you're in, it (hopefully) gets better.

one thing about this book that really stood out is the fact that anna put her characters through real life situations, such as family problems, having to work to support your family, etc. it made the story feel more realistic, and i loved that about it!

overall, i really enjoyed joyride! definitely recommend this for anyone who wants an easy, contemporary lifelike read!

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