A good book can inspire you to do anything, but with summer just around the corner now, there's nothing better than an awesome new story to fill your head with dreams of the sun beating down, the beach at your side and nothing but the open road stretching out in front of you and your best pals.
If you're already itching to channel your inner Britney Crossroads days and jump in a vintage convertible with your denim shorts and a bag of snacks for the trip of a lifetime, then here's 13 brill YA books that are guaranteed to make you wanna hit the road.
1. Amy & Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson
Amy Curry thinks her life sucks. Her dad recently died in a car accident, and her mom decides to move from California to Connecticut—just in time for Amy's senior year. To escape from it all, Amy embarks on a road trip, driving cross-country from the home she's always known toward her new life. Joining her is Roger, the son of Amy's mother's old friend. Amy hasn't seen him in years, but her feelings for Roger develop as the miles roll by….
2. Paper Towns by John Green
Quentin Jacobsen has always loved Margo Roth Spiegelman, for Margo (and her adventures) are the stuff of legend at their high school. So when she one day climbs through his window and summons him on an all-night road trip of revenge he cannot help but follow.But the next day Margo doesn't come to school and a week later she is still missing. Q soon learns that there are clues in her disappearance . . . and they are for him.
3. 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson
Ginny, aged 17, is left 13 little blue envelopes by her free-spirited young Aunt Peg. Little does she know just how much they will change her life. Inside envelope No 1 is money and instructions to buy a plane ticket. Inside envelope No 2 are directions to a specific London flat. Inside envelope No 3 a note to Ginny says: Find a starving artist. And because of envelope No 4, Ginny and a man called Keith go to Scotland together, with somewhat disastrous – though utterly romantic – results.
4. Two-Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt
This is Jordan and Courtney, totally in love. Sure, they were an unlikely high school couple. But they clicked; it worked. They're even going to the same college, and driving cross-country together for orientation.Then Jordan dumps Courtney—for a girl he met on the Internet. It's too late to change plans, so the road trip is on. Turns out, he's got a secret or two that he's not telling Courtney.
5. In Honor by Jessi Kirby
Three days after learning of her brother Finn's death, Honor receives his last letter from Iraq. Devastated, she interprets his note as a final request and spontaneously sets off to California to fulfill it. At the last minute, she's joined by Rusty, Finn's former best friend. As their memories of Finn merge to create a new portrait, Honor's eyes are opened to a side of her brother she never knew—a side that shows her the true meaning of love and sacrifice.
6. Mosquitoland by David Arnold
7. Let's Get Lost by Adi Alsaid
When her parents unexpectedly divorce, Mim Malone is dragged from her beloved home in Ohio to the 'wastelands' of Mississippi, where she lives in a haze of medication with her dad and new (almost certainly evil) stepmom. But when Mim learns her real mother is ill back home, she escapes her new life and embarks on a rescue mission aboard a Greyhound bus, meeting an assortment of quirky characters along the way and confronting her own demons.
8. Jerk, California by Jonathan Friesen
Because of his Tourette's syndrome, Sam is in near constant motion with tics and twitches and verbal outbursts and high school is nothing but torment. But then an unexpected turn of events unearths the truth about his father, and suddenly Sam doesn't know who he is, or even where he'll go next. What he does know is that the only girl in the world who can make him happy and nervous at the same time is everywhere he turns . . . and he'd give anything just to be still.
9. Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien
Oh we're not even going to pretend you don't know what happens in this one, but let's be honest, road trips don't get more epic than a trip to Mordor.
10. Reunited by Hilary Weisman Graham
Alice, Summer, and Tiernan used to be best friends as well as the self-proclaimed biggest fans of the band Level3. But when the band broke up, so did their friendship. When Level3 announces a one-time reunion show in Texas, Alice impulsively buys tickets and invites her two former friends along for the trip. Reluctant at first, both girls agree to go - but each with her own ulterior motive.
11. Going Bovine by Libba Bray
All 16-year-old Cameron wants is to get through high school - but that's before he's given some bad news: he's sick and he's going to die. Which totally sucks. Hope arrives in the winged form of Dulcie, a loopy punk angel/possible hallucination with a bad sugar habit. She tells Cam there is a cure - if he's willing to go in search of it - so Cam sets off on the mother of all road trips through a twisted America into the heart of what matters most
12. The Disenchantments by Nina LaCour
Colby and Bev have a long-standing pact: graduate, hit the road with Bev's band, and then spend the year wandering around Europe. But moments after the tour kicks off, Bev makes a shocking announcement: she's abandoning their plans - and Colby - to start college in the fall. But the show must go on and The Disenchantments weave through the Pacific Northwest, playing in small towns and dingy venues, while roadie - Colby struggles to deal with Bev's already-growing distance and the most important question of all: what's next?
13. On The Road by Jack Kerouac
Maybe the most iconic coming-of-age novel EVER, On The Road is all about Sal Paradise, who joins his hero Dean Moriarty on a breathless, exuberant ride back and forth across the United States. There's drink, sex, drugs and jazz in their exploration of personal freedom, as they test all of the limits of the American dream.
Anyone got a Mustang we can borrow?
Let us know what you reckon to all of this lot, or whether you've got any other brill recommendations please, pals. We're over on Twitter @Sugarscape.
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