Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour – Morgan Matson

“FROM: Mom
TO: Amy
DATE: June 3
Hi, Amy,
Greetings from Connecticut! I was glad to hear that your finals went well. Also glad to hear that Candide was a success. I’m sure you were great, as usual – I just wish I could have been there!
Can’t believe it’s been a month since I’ve seen you! Feels like much long! I hope you’ve been on your best behaviour with your aunt. It was very nice of her to check in on you, so I hoped you thanked her.”

Following the death of Amy’s dad, her mum has decided they are moving to Connecticut and there’s no stopping her. Leaving Amy alone in California for a month while she takes her finals; her mother ships out to the East Coast. Then Amy is dropped a bombshell, her mum wants her to bring the car with her when she moves. The only problem; since the accident that killed her father, Amy can’t get behind the wheel of a car.
Enter Roger, old family friend that Amy doesn’t know from Adam. He’s pretty damn cute and when he suggests a more scenic, more exciting route for them to take than the boring one Amy’s mother planned, Amy goes for it. Little does Amy know how much the trip will open her eyes to what’s around her.

Honestly, if there’s one road trip book you read this year; make it be Amy and Roger’s! It was amazingly eye-opening, funny and beautiful all in one!
The story gathers us up into Amys thoughts, feelings and experiences. With a first person narrative you really get inside Amy and it’s a bit of a messed up place to be. She blames herself for her father’s death, something you can tell why she does but also can see why it’s not her fault! I really couldn’t get over how powerful this book was with its emotions and I honestly felt everything Amy felt whilst I read!
Roger is exceptionally cute and hung up on some girl from college so he seems pretty unobtainable. I loved the way you got snippets of who he was and how everything gathered together as to the reason he was there on the trip with Amy. He didn’t have to do it but he did because he’s a genuinely nice guy and you don’t get too many of those! He had my vote from the minute I saw Jack’s Mannequin on his first playlist but then when I heard about his thing for explorers… he was just cuteness personified!
The huge theme running through the book was grief, following the loss of Amy’s father. You can tell from the minute you start reading that this changed Amy and who she thought she was. She was still in the first “stages” of grieving at the beginning of the book, even though it was three months after the accident, and this story is all about closure for Amy. I loved the little things that made Amy realise that things had to go on and I really loved that she was strong enough to go through with some of the things she did.
I love that this book actually made me want to pick up my bags, jump in the car and drive! I have always been a bit “whats the point?” about road trips but this book made me realise whats fun about them and I would totally just choose where to go next on the day I drove out too! I think that’s the best way of doing it!
I knew I would love this book when I heard about how big music was in it and how awesome that music was. The chapters were headed with music lyrics and there were a few playlists scattered about in it. I loved this and I loved the effect it had on Amy. The bit in the book where Amy tells a character about her father dying and he just places his headphones on her with scremo stuff playing… that was genius and I can see why that would help her!!
Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour had an amazingly storyline which I don’t want to go into too much. It’s a lot about growing up, realising who you are and how you got to where you are. I loved the education in this book, without realising I found out stuff about States I didn’t know existed and music I never knew about before. Amy also learnt this stuff and I could see her becoming a more developed character as the book progressed. I would seriously recommend this book to anyone and everyone. The progression is amazingly and you can see subtle differences in the character as they get closer to their destination and things start to change. Nothing drastic happens in Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour but I think that’s one thing that made me love the story even more than I thought I would!
Amy and Roger’s Epic is a fantastic debut from Morgan Matson, It was published in the UK by Simon and Schuster on July 7th. My copy was purchased as a present to myself for my birthday! 


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