Five strangers. Countless adventures. One epic way to get lost.
Four teens across the country have only one thing in common: a girl named LEILA. She crashes into their lives in her absurdly red car at the moment they need someone the most.
There's HUDSON, a small-town mechanic who is willing to throw away his dreams for true love. And BREE, a runaway who seizes every Tuesday—and a few stolen goods along the way. ELLIOT believes in happy endings…until his own life goes off-script. And SONIA worries that when she lost her boyfriend, she also lost the ability to love.
Hudson, Bree, Elliot and Sonia find a friend in Leila. And when Leila leaves them, their lives are forever changed. But it is during Leila's own 4,268-mile journey that she discovers the most important truth— sometimes, what you need most is right where you started. And maybe the only way to find what you're looking for is to get lost along the way.
This follows Leila as she makes her way north on an epic road trip to see the Northern Lights, but each chapter from someone else'e perspective. A really interesting way to do things but one that definitely worked, as Leila stayed this mysterious, short-term entity that floats into each of their lives and (usually) makes it better.
First up was Hudson. A mechanic's son with dreams of becoming a doctor, Leila enters the day before his big college interview. Through destiny and a little misbehaving, Hudson stays out too late with her and ends up missing the interview. He obviously blames her but Leila throws it back and says that he had plenty of opportunities of stop, maybe he didn't really want to be a doctor anyway. Well that stumped him. And that's pretty much Leila, coming into someone's life suddenly and throwing everything out of sync but setting things back on course.
She then meets Bree, teenage runaway and they both get arrested. Next up is Elliott who needs help getting the girl of his dreams. Finally Sonia is struggling with love and needs a hand getting into Canada because she has the wedding rings. In each case, Leila bumps into them and just simply by being there, being someone to talk to, she helps them take that next step or whatever it is that needs doing.
The final chapter was Leila's. She has reached her camp site where she's going to watch the Lights and she finally shares the truth of why she's on this epic road trip. Her last step in her journey was sweet and a little bit heart-breaking as she opens up to a neighbouring family on the camp site, much like all her new friends opened up to her. Leila finds some truth in her road trip, not exactly what she was searching for but still something good. Her whole journey has taught both her and her new friends to be true to themselves and go after what they love, because life is too short. Might sound like a cliché but it's true. And after leaving Hudson in the first leg of her trip, to have a happy ending and get her semblance of family back was just perfect. An all around feel good story.
Published 1st August 2014 by MiraInk. Thank you to the publisher for my copy in exchange for an honest review.