Welcome to my review of Where the Road Takes Me by Jay McLean, a title appropriate for Teen and YA readers who want a bit of a coming of age story.
I’d not heard of the author, but the synopsis promised some great potential so into the book I went. Chloe spends most of her school time trying to be invisible: she has her reasons, but mostly in her senior year she is just counting the days until she hatches her plan to hit the road.
Blake is the star basketball player: Mr. Popular with everything anyone could want: girlfriend, great family, good grades and unlimited potential. He doesn’t know Chloe, but that will change.
These two are thrown together, and Chloe’s hope to be the ‘invisible’ girl is no match for Blake’s determination. Back and forth they go: the two seem to be completely incompatible, until bits and pieces show that Chloe’s life is not nearly as depressing and dramatic as she wants it to be, and Blake’s isn’t so perfect. This is a relationship that starts with a finite end, and while the initial interaction starts as friendship, there is a slow build to more.
So why couldn’t I love this book? Blake has a girlfriend but pursues Chloe. So, the ‘girlfriend’ was more of an arm-candy thing, but his lack of integrity bothered me. While I did love the fact that he was trying to show Chloe a way out of her self-created depression and dramatics, he played along with them all too often, passively, to make those moments feel real. Chloe: O M G what a drama queen! Life is never perfect, and no one knows what the future holds: take some control, stop overplaying your hand constantly. REPEATEDLY. I so wanted to just slap sense into her: and I wondered more than once if her “invisibility” was something she chose or simply pretended to as anyone who befriended her was fed up with her antics.
You really have to enjoy the schoolhouse overplayed melodrama to enjoy her, and he’s not far behind. Making things worse: the ending. Rushed, quickly tied up and not quite feeling either real or possible. The ‘key’ to their connection drops in the epilogue, making them very similar: but it just felt like an added element to further prove this odd couple was “destined’. While the premise hold some great potential, and there were many places to make the story sing, it went flat early, and continued with the woe is me monologue that soon just became background noise.
Title: Where the Road Takes Me
Author: Jay McLean
Genre: Coming of Age, Teen Reads
Published by: Skyscape
Published on: 10 February 2015
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Audio Length: 8 Hours: 51 minutes
Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ AllRomance ♦ iTunes ♦ Book Depository ♦ Google
Chloe has one plan for the future, and one plan only: the road. She’s made a promise to herself: don’t let anyone in, and don’t let anyone love her. She’s learned the hard way what happens if she breaks her rules. So she’s focused on being invisible and waiting until she can set out on the road—her dream of freedom, at least for a little while.
Blake Hunter is a basketball star who has it all—everything about him looks perfect to those on the other side of his protective walls. He can’t let anyone see the shattered pieces behind the flawless facade or else all his hopes and dreams will disappear.
One dark night throws Chloe and Blake together, changing everything for Blake. For Chloe, nothing changes: she has the road, and she’s focused on it. But when the so-called perfect boy starts to notice the invisible girl, they discover that sometimes with love, no one knows where the road may lead.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
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