Title – Author: Wanderlove – Kristen Hubbard
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Release Date: March 13, 2012
Format – Source: Paperback – Bought
Bria Sandoval wants to have the travel experience of a lifetime, one where she can forget her ex-boyfriend and be independent and free. She signs up for a tour of Central America only to discover that instead of the beautiful young people she was expecting, her tour consists of middle-aged tourists. When she meets Rowan and his sister Starling, two experienced backpackers, she takes a chance and ditches her tour, joining them off the beaten path. As they explore the beautiful landscapes and crowded cities, Bria discovers that she has more in common with Rowan than she thought. Both of them are trying to forget their past selves. Bria will realize that running isn’t always the right answer. When she confronts her past, she’ll open herself up to the chance of something real.
Bria does something I’ve always wanted to do: taken a trip to a foreign country by herself. I think it’s one of the bravest things ever, even though the trip she planned doesn’t turn out to be what she wants or needs. I loved that her trip was set in Central America, because it’s somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit but haven’t read any stories about. The settings are so vivid and lively. I want to go to all of the places Bria visits.
Bria doesn’t just journey physically, though. She goes through quite the emotional turmoil on her trip. After a bad break-up with her boyfriend, Bria has lost an essential part of herself: her art. I enjoyed seeing her slowly get back to doing what she loves so much. I also liked how Bria slowly opens herself up to Rowan, trusting him with her secrets a little bit at a time. I think what I like most of all about Bria’s journey is her resolution. She spends a lot of the novel blaming others for what’s happening in her life. At the end, she finally realizes she has the power to control her life. Her choices are hers and hers alone.