Wednesday, May 17, 2017

#ReadADessen Campaign: Along for the Ride

Last month, I made a playlist of feel-good songs after reading Keeping the Moon, which had been my very first Dessen novel. And this time I'm back with a personal summer quest inspired by Along for the Ride. Huge thanks to Penguin for the copy of the book and inviting me to participate in this cool campaign celebrating her new novel, Once and for All. #PRHPartner

 *****

Title: Along for the Ride
Author: Sarah Dessen
Publisher: Speak
Release Date: June 16th, 2009!
*Physical review copy kindly provided by Penguin Teen.

From Goodreads...
It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.

A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.

In her signature pitch-perfect style, Sarah Dessen explores the hearts of two lonely people learning to connect.

*****

A Quest of My Own
A big part of the book are these nights that our two insomniacs spend together. At first, it’s just a way to pass the time, and Eli shows her the nightlife that exists in Colby and nearby. But eventually, they end up on a quest to give Auden the carefree and “wild” childhood she never got. She’d grown up fast, basically was forced into independence early on because of how her parents were. And yeah, she likes academics and gaining more knowledge and achieving goals. But she missed out on a lot. On close friendships and silly activities, on socializing and learning how to ride a bike. It’s a second chance, a way for her to live a little. It inspired me to create a sort of quest of my own. Maybe I won’t get to do any of these this summer, but I can sure try to achieve a few of these goals! Also I picked a lot of things that are typically summer activities, but that doesn’t mean I can’t do them at any time. Like Auden knows, it's never too late. :D

1. Learn how to swim. If Auden can find the courage to learn how to ride a bike when she’s a teenager, then I can do the same with swimming. I’ve never been a HUGE fan of water, but I do like going to the lake sometimes. I mean, you can’t really live in a state known for its great lakes and *never* go in them. And also, I would really like to learn to get over my fears.

2. Teach myself how to braid. I don't know how! ISN'T IT WEIRD? I guess I just never cared to learn, and I am far too lazy to actually do something with my hair after I wake up. But I always liked it when others did it for me, and how it looks, so I want to teach myself.

3. Plan and execute a road trip with friends. I’ve never been on a TRUE road trip, one where it’s all open roads and random stops along the way, exploring small towns and finding new places to fall in love with. So I really, really want to do this one day with friends. It would be the best.

4. Play in a beach volleyball tournament. If this is a thing??? I miss playing and no one ever wants to do it at the 4th of July family picnic at the lake. Even if it’s just a fun thing, and not like competitive, that’d be so cool.

5. Emergency dance party! This one might seem silly, but I've never danced just for the sake of dancing. But in the two Dessen novels I've read, the characters often did dance parties, and it sounded so fun, to just let go and shake off a rough day or situation. No judgment. Just dancing.

6. Sing at karaoke night. I've been to a karaoke night only once, and it was not that long ago with some of my fam and coworkers. But I didn't sing because I felt waaaaay too self-conscious about it. Next time, though, I might do a duet with my cousin. I want to be brave and not care how bad I am!


What is on YOUR summer quest/bucket list? Would you do any of these six items too? Also, have you read Along for the Ride? Did you like it? Let’s talk! :)

*****

Enter for a chance to win one (1) set of Sarah Dessen’s books in paperback (ARV: $132.00). NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on April 17, 2017 and 12:00 AM on May 29, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about June 1, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.