Someone Else’s Summer author Rachel Bateman shares six road trip books you’ll love to take on your next vacation.
About ‘Someone Else’s Summer’
Anna’s always idolized her older sister, Storm. So when Storm dies in a tragic car accident on the night of her high school graduation, Anna is completely lost and her family is torn apart. That is, until she finds Storm’s summer bucket list and decides to honor her sister by having the best summer ever — which includes taking an epic road trip to the coast from her sleepy Iowa town. Setting out to do everything on Storm’s list along with her sisters best friend Cameron — the boy next door — who knew that Storm’s dream summer would eventually lead to Anna’s own self-discovery?
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6 YA books to take with you on the open road
Very few things say summer more than a good road trip. There’s something about being behind the wheel, the window down and sun on your face, music cranked up, that’s exhilarating. Out on the open road, you feel free. It’s no wonder there are so many young adult novels that feature road trips: they are the perfect backdrop to fun, romance, and finding who you are.
Summer is just around the corner; get ready for travel season with these road trip-centric books!
1) ‘Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour’ by Morgan Matson
Amy hasn’t driven since her father was killed in a car accident, but now she needs to get the family car from California to their new home in Connecticut. Enter, Roger: the son of an old family friend Amy barely remembers. Amy’s mother mapped out their route down to the very last detail, but it doesn’t take long for Amy and Roger to go off map and head out on one epic detour! Playlists, scraps of receipts, postcards, and other road trip details make this book extra fun, especially since Morgan Matson actually took the road trip route in the book and the pictures come from that trip.
2) ‘Open Road Summer’ by Emery Lord
Maybe the only thing better than a road trip with your best friend is taking that road trip on your best friend’s awesome tour bus. Reagan just broke up with her boyfriend, and her best friend, country superstar Lilah Montgomery, has a broken heart of her own. So Lilah’s 24-city tour couldn’t come at a better time for the two girls — it’s a full summer of girls-only, post-breakup bonding. That is, until Matt Finch joins the tour as the opening act…
The characters are so richly written that you wish you were right there on the road with them. It’s easy to want to be Lilah Montgomery’s best friend!
3) ‘You Are Here’ by Jennifer E Smith
Emma has never quite felt whole, being the only ordinary person in her very extraordinary family. When she finds a birth certificate for her twin brother—along with a death certificate — she realizes why, and she sets off to go visit his grave in North Carolina along with her quiet, history-obsessed neighbor, Peter, who is desperate to see the world. Their trip is full of awkward silences and fun factoids, and feels more real than most road trip books. Fair warning: Peter’s love of maps will rub off on you by the end.
4) ‘In Honor’ by Jessi Kirby
Honor gets her brother’s last letter from Iraq three days after learning that he’s died. In it are tickets to see her favorite pop star, Kyra Kelly — and a joking plea that she tell Kyra he loves her. Honor’s determined to honor Finn’s last request, so she sets out to go see Kyra Kelly with Finn’s ex-best friend, Rusty. Neither is what the other wants in a road trip partner, but along the way they find a way to ease their shared pain. This is a beautiful book, from cover to cover, and even with the sad subject, it’s one you want to live in for a while.
5) ‘The Disenchantments’ by Nina Lacour
Colby thought he and Bev had life after high school all planned out: spend the summer traveling with Bev’s band, then the next year in Europe. But it turns out Bev is planning something of her own, abandoning their plans to go to college in the fall. As they say, the show must go on, though, so Colby is stuck driving Bev and her bandmates throughout the Pacific Northwest on tour, all while dealing with his feelings of betrayal. This book will feel achingly familiar to anyone who’s ever nursed a long-time crush. There’s a lot of good here, but possibly the best part is how BAD the band actually is.
6) ‘Reunited’ by Hilary Weisman Graham
In middle school, Summer, Alice, and Tiernan were inseparable. Best friends who had one major thing in common: a diehard, fangirl love for the band Level3. Then high school came around, and everything changed. Level3 broke up, and so did the friendship. When Level3 announces a one-night only reunion concert, Alice takes it as a sign and buys three tickets before even asking Tiernan and Summer. A cross-country road trip with ex-best friends is about as fun as it sounds at first, but as the trip goes on — full of fun and often funny shenanigans — the girls start to remember what their friendship was like. Extra fun bonus points on this one for the Pea Pod, the old, pea-green VW camper bus the girls take to Texas.
About Rachel Bateman
Rachel Bateman grew up with an abundance of sisters, but an unfortunate lack of boys next door. When she’s not writing, you can find Rachel sewing, wrangling chickens, or secretly planning her next road trip. Rachel lives with her husband and two sons in Great Falls, Montana.