In Which I Wish I Was on the Road (YA Road Trip Novels)

Hey guys! So I’m sure you know by now how much I LOVE traveling and being on the road to somewhere, anywhere. I love seeing new places and meeting new people and just driving. But sometimes you just can’t go and you have to see those new places in books, which, sometimes, is totally cool with me. I love living vicariously through the characters in the novels I’m reading, especially if they are on a road trip.

Road map

I found out that the first week of April was actually Read a Road Map Week (you know, one of those pointless, unnecessary “holidays” that are all over the place), and I thought it’d be fun to put together a list of some of my favorite road trip books. So here are five of my favorites as well as three I want to read. DEFINITELY recommend me road trip books if you know of any not on my list!

Mosquitoland by David Arnold

MOSQUITOLAND by David Arnold
Mississippi >>> Ohio

Let's Get Lost

LET’S GET LOST by Adi Alsaid
Louisiana >>> Alaska

Paper Towns

PAPER TOWNS by John Green
Florida >>> New York

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Swindon, England >>> London, England
(okay, this one is more of a train ride but any chance I have to mention this book, I will)

Don't Fail Me Now by Una LaMarche

DON’T FAIL ME NOW by Una LaMarche
Baltimore, Maryland >>> California


AMY & ROGER’S EPIC DETOUR by Morgan Matson

Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I’d Like to Check in With

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. Today’s theme was:

Top Ten Characters You’d Like To Check In With (meaning, the book or series is over and you so just wish you could peek in on the “life” you imagine they are leading years down the line after the story ends).

I have very carefully chosen books that will probably never see another book. I think it’s somewhat silly to choose a book that is in the middle of the series or will have at least one more book after (even though I CAN’T WAIT to check it with the Raven Boys).

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli    The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky    The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons    The Humans by Matt Haig    Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

1. Simon and Blue – Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli (Happy publication day to this wonderful book!)

2. CharlieThe Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

3. Aya and KiranThe Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons

4. Professor Andrew MartinThe Humans by Matt Haig

5. Everyone from the Anna and the French Kiss books but mostly Lola and CricketLola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling    It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini    Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater    S. by J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst

6. Katniss, Peeta, Gale, Haymitch – The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins

7. Teddy Lupin or really anyone in the second generation – Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

8. CraigIt’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini (I actually started crying while I typed that out. I just…can’t. All I can do is think of Ned Vizzini)

9. Grace Brisbane – the Wolves of Mercy Falls series by Maggie Stiefvater

10. Jennifer and EricS. by J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst

There are so many more I could list. What characters would you love to check in with?

Happy Halloween! Ten Halloween Reads

It’s Halloween! I’m sure I’m not the only book lover who has books they like to read during a certain time of year. This is a list of books that I recommend to read around Halloween. They are all different genres. Some are “classics” and some are newer. None of them are necessarily Halloween-themed, but they have creepy aspects or creatures that are associated with the holiday.

As always, all titles are linked to their corresponding Goodreads pages.

The Passage

The Passage by Justin Cronin

The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe (anything by Edgar Allan Poe, really)

Through the Woods cover

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll (My review)

Dracula by Bram Stoker

Pet Cemetery

Pet Cemetery by Stephen King (there are several more I could’ve chosen)

Phantoms by Dean Koontz

The Graveyard Book

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

The Haunted Book by Jeremy Dyson

John Dies at the End

John Dies at the End by David Wong (for a weird but not so creepy/scary read)

I haven’t read it yet, but I’m going to assume Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs is a good fit for the list. This is one that I definitely want to check out.

Have you read any of these? Tell me what you’d add to the list!

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Unique Books

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week, bloggers post a list of ten books under a theme laid out on The Broke and the Bookish blog. You can find the list HERE.


This week’s theme was the top ten most unique books you’ve ever read. Let’s go!

1. The Passage by Justin Cronin

This book has such a unique back story to the creation of vampires and the subsequent outbreak of the disease in the modern day. It’s creepy, full of horror, and brilliant. 1000 pages of awesome.

2. S. by J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst

Metafiction at its best. This book is a work of art. The book you pick up is not even the book you read: you read Ship of Theseus, which centers on S., by fictional author VM Straka. The two characters reading Ship of Theseus, Eric and Jennifer, attempt to figure out who Straka was while figuring out who they are. It’s full of letters, photocopies, postcards, pictures, and various memorabilia. So cool.

3. The Radleys by Matt Haig

Another unique take on vampires. This one is smart, witty, and altogether very clever. The Radleys are vampires, but the parents, Peter and Helen, haven’t told their two children, Clara and Rowan. They follow the Abstainer’s Handbook, guidelines to living without blood,, but when a shocking, violent act occurs, they must tell their children everything. It’s so well-written and different. I loved it.


4. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

It’s not necessarily the story that’s unique, but the beautiful illustrations that are included are amazing. I saw that they now make a version of this book without illustrations. I’m not even sure why you’d want to read it without them. That’s what makes the story. They’re gorgeous!

5. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Completely plausible werewolf story. I thought the background story was very unique and realistic.

6. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

This was the first book I’d ever read like this (well, the only one, really). It’s written from the perspective of an autistic 15 year old boy who sets out to find the murderer of his neighbor’s dog. It was eye-opening, moving, and beautifully written.

7. Lolito by Ben Brooks

Sort of modern take on Lolita written from the perspective of the young, male “victim”. I flew through this book. It’s hilarious at times, disturbing at others, and just all around unlike anything I’ve ever read.

8. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

This book centers around Don Tillman, a man who reminds the reader of Sheldon Cooper from the Big Bang Theory. Don doesn’t fit in, but in a way to find himself a female life partner, he designs the Wife Project, a logic-based compatibility quiz that should match him with a partner. It’s funny, sweet, and optimistic.

johndiesattheend9. John Dies at the End by David Wong

Horror done in a way I’d never seen it before. Don Coscarelli, director of Phantasm I–V and Bubba Ho-tep said, “David Wong is like a mash-up of Douglas Adams and Stephen King . . . ‘page-turner’ is an understatement.” I couldn’t have said it better.

10. The Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan

The most unique take on mythology I’ve ever come across and truly enjoyed.


What books would be on your list?

Top Ten Tuesday: “Gateway” books

I’m a little late to the party, but The Broke and the Bookish host a weekly meme called Top Ten Tuesday. Each week, bloggers post a list of ten books under a theme laid out on The Broke and the Bookish blog.

toptentuesday I’ve decided to join them in the fun. So this week’s theme is “Top Ten ‘Gateway’ Books”, meaning a book that got you into reading, an author that got you into a certain genre, a book that brought you out of reading slump, etc.

Here’s my list, which is a combination of all of those things:

1. Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
This book is pretty much the reason I read. It sparked my imagination, inspired me, showed me how magical books and reading could be. It is my favorite story, and I’ve read it a million times.

2. The Harry Potter series
I don’t even know how to put into words my love for this series. But second to Peter Pan, it is why I read. I found them at exactly the right age, and they were with me as I grew up. I matured as the characters, and JK’s writing, matured. They were there when I went through my awkward pre-teens, my rough teenage years, and they’re still with me now, should I decide to go back and re-read them (which I do. Often).

The Falls by Ian Rankin


3. The Falls by Ian Rankin
I read this novel before I studied in Scotland for a month in 2010. I’d never read much crime fiction other than Sherlock Holmes and wasn’t sure if I’d like it. But Rankin is a master at his craft and I fell head over heels in love with Scotland, his writing, and crime fiction while reading it. I’ve since read every other book Rankin has written, met him on multiple occasions, did my honors thesis on the series that includes The Falls, and worked at Bloody Scotland (Scotland’s first crime writing festival) because of my love of crime fiction.



4. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
This is my favorite book. It is a modern day classic, and I cannot tell you how many times I’ve read it. There is a power behind it that words cannot explain.

5. Edgar Allan Poe
Mystery, horror, Gothicism, and creep-tastic stories. What’s not to love?

6. The Passage by Justin Cronin
If you haven’t read this book, DO IT. Yes, it’s 1000 pages long, but it is worth it. This book ignited my love of horror and reminded me that I truly love vampire stories, something I’d forgotten after the onslaught of Twilight and its many spinoffs.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins



7. The Hunger Games series
I’ve always been a fan of post-apocalyptic novels, but this series reminded me of that love. It had been a while since I’d read any novel in that genre, and because of it, I have read so many more since. These novels are fantastic.



8. John Green
John Green. Oh, John Green, how I love thee. He reawakened my love of young adult novels. He’s made me cry, laugh, empathize, and devour his books.

9. The Maze Runner series
Goodness gracious. I can’t explain my love for this series, other than to say, it is the reason I started this blog. I loved them so much that I wanted to tell as many people as I could about them.

The Humans



10. The Humans by Matt Haig
I got a free copy of this book from its UK publisher, Canongate, when I was interning there last year. I knew I’d like it but didn’t know I’d fall I love with it the way I did. This book makes you appreciate the fact that you are alive, that you are human. It tells you it’s okay to be the way you are. It’s funny, sad, serious, and just all-around breathtaking.



What are your gateway books/authors? I’d love to know! Link back to your list, and I’ll definitely check it out!