How I found out about it: On Anna’s Reads.
First of all, as a huge fan of theatre myself, I loved that Amy was an aspiring actress and fan of Sondheim. (I love him too.) It’s also awesome that she loves a good diner. (Being originally from Jersey, I understand this.) Second, I love that she doesn’t feel the need to “make friends” with Roger at first. She’s dealing with so much, and I think Matson does an amazing job of creating this internal Anna. She’s down to earth. She’s honest. She’s hurting and her emotions are raw. The flashbacks are smoothly woven within the present day story and I feel with each chapter, we get a better grasp as to the blame Anna is placing on herself for the end of her family as she knew it, and also this rebirth of hope for the future.
Roger, at the same time, is trying to figure out why his relationship just ended. He’s also stuck in the car with a girl he hardly knows and who just went through some traumatic events. He is a trooper, he is a rock, and he never pushes. For a change, it’s nice (well, you know what I mean) to see a boy who is constantly calling a girl who won’t call him back and is giving him vague answers to questions.
In addition, every character they meet up with has a hand in helping these characters discover the truths about themselves and push them closer together. I’m not dense. Even from the cover, you realize somehow, someway, these two are going to end up together. (Even if Roger and Amy had no idea.) Whether for an evening, or for something more meaningful. They need each other. And when we finally reach that point, it’s perfect even though their future together remains unknown.
There are some lovely, touching moments in this book. Particularly when Amy reaches Graceland and visits her brother in a rehab facility. The experiences that unfold when they are trying to track down Roger’s ex are also very unexpected but genuine and important.
I can’t say enough fantastic things about this book. I was truly sad when it was over, knowing it was going to take something spellbinding and absolutely groundbreaking to make me feel as complete and as changed as Amy & Roger did. One more amazing detail: I love when books use other mediums to tell a story – like the travel scrapbook and the playlists I have printed out and are waiting for me to make them myself.
Do you get what I’m saying yet? READ THIS BOOK.