Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Review: Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt

By 10:06 AM , , , , ,

Right of Way
   by: Lauren Barnholdt

Publication Date: July 9, 2013
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Genre: Contemporary
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: e-ARC received from Edelweiss and the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 320 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 3/5 stars

Can a road trip repair a romance gone wrong? Find out in this standalone companion to Lauren Barnholdt’s Two-way Street.

Here are Peyton and Jace, meeting on vacation. Click! It’s awesome, it’s easy, it’s romantic. This is the real deal.

Unless it isn’t. Because when you’re in love, you don’t just stop calling one day. And you don’t keep secrets. Or lie. And when your life starts falling apart, you’re supposed to have the other person to lean on.

Here are Peyton and Jace again, broken up but thrown together on a road trip. One of them is lying about the destination. One of them is pretending not to be leaving something behind. And neither of them is prepared for what’s coming on the road ahead…
                                                              -goodreads.com description

I was so excited to get approved for this book! I keep hearing awesome things about Lauren Barnholdt and have been on a contemporary kick lately- not to mention- summer, road trip? Yes, please! I thought this would be the perfect summer read! This book definitely engaged me, as I only planned on reading 50 pages. 50 pages turned into staying up until 2am finishing this book! I guess it was the whole 'I have to keep reading because I have to see these two finally get together' thing.

I won't lie. While I didn't hate this book, I didn't love it either. I had some major problems with the characters and I guess I thought it would be more road trip than what it actually ended up being. At first I found the going back and forth between the past and the present along with the dual POV's to be a bit confusing, but I finally got the hang of it. I do like that we learned the backstory of Peyton and Jace and how they came to be at the point they currently were. For a senior in HS, Peyton had some serious maturity issues in my opinion. She came off as a brat for about 90% of the book. I honestly don't know what Jace even saw in her. I liked him a bit better than Peyton. He genuinely did like her, but he did overreact as to why he would just out of the blue stop talking to Peyton. I've said it many times, if I can't identify with my characters, I have a lot of trouble liking a book. What kept me going was that I wanted to know why Jace stopped talking to Peyton all of a sudden and I wanted to know what happened the night before the road trip at Peyton's cousin wedding that they both kept referring to.

I do feel a bit bad for Kari's character. She's not a major player in the book, but Jace knew he was still hung up on Peyton, so I don't think he should have started anything with this other girl. Especially since he knew he would be coming face to face with Peyton at her cousin's father's wedding. That whole angle seemed a bit forced and seemed put in just to add another unnecessary barrier for Peyton and Jace to break through.

I also felt like the book just ended rather abruptly. After all the drama, after all the build up, boom? It's all ok now? Everyone's happy and this is the stuff true love is made of? Quite a few things lacked resolution: What about the situation with Peyton's mom? And her family situation? What about Peyton and Jace's relationship? Is it going to continue to be long-distance? What about their trust issues with one another? Are those magically fixed?

I teach high schoolers on a daily basis. I know how they overreact and freak out about the smallest of things. But for Jace to be angry over this? Sure, she kept a secret from him and he was hurting because they shared a lot and he thought she trusted him. Yet, he should have called her and just confronted her about it, instead of taking the 10 year old 'I'm not talking to you' approach. And Peyton? Instead of ignoring the problem at hand, she should have just let him explain instead of acting like a little diva. Not to mention the boy offers to drive you from Florida to Connecticut. Show a little gratitude!

Overall, this one just fell short for me. The characters were not likeable, the plot had potential but didn't go in the direction I expected, and a lot was left to be resolved. I will still read more by Barnholdt but if you're looking for a good road trip, summer read: Try Golden by Jessi Kirby or Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson.

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  1. I still want to read Right of Way despite the lack of glowing reviews because it's a companion to Two Way Street (which I loved) but I think I'm just going to borrow it from library eventually instead of making the buy.

    Aly @ My Heart Hearts Books

    1. I think I definitely want to still read Two Way Street. I would probably borrow it from the library first though just to make sure I enjoyed it before purchasing as well. I hope you end up liking it more than I did!

  2. It's great that you got swept along by the story, despite your frustrations. I'm kinda torn about RoW. It sounds so great, but so many readers have felt "meh" about it.
    Great review!

    1. Thanks Andrea. I was definitely bummed because I really wanted to like it!

  3. This sounds like it has such potential, but I have yet to see anyone who really loved it. I hate it when characters act younger than they are. I also hate not being able to identify with them. Sorry this one didnt live up to your expectations =/

    1. Thanks chica. I was so excited for this one. But I agree- I've only seen a few positive reviews. I don't know- maybe I'm getting too old and just can't tolerate whiny behavior...


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