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5 Stars Out Of 5
I really loved this story!
September 16, 2014
I wasnt sure what to expect when I picked up roadside assistance to read one thing I knew for sure, was if Amy Clipston had written it, it would be a great read but since Im nearing retirement, I wasnt sure if I could see it from the eyes of a teenager, which would make sense, as it is being listed as YA fiction.
While it is true that I identified easily with the adults Brad, Darlene and Chuck, Pastor Keith and Jenna it was also remarkably easy to identify with the main character.
Seventeen-year-old Emily loses her mom, her boyfriend, and then her home. She and her dad are forced to move in with his sister and her family. Emily turns away from God, feeling like shes lost everything that matters (except her dad).
I really loved this story it drew me in quickly and without warning; before I knew it, I was over half done and obviously I wasnt going to put it down until I was finished. Thankfully I began reading early, with minor interruptions, so I was able to finish and get to bed before midnight.
Normally wait until I have written the review before picking up another book, but I couldnt wait to get started on the sequel, destination unknown this story focuses on Emilys cousin Whitney! Cool!
Ill be posting my review of destination unknown in a couple of days, but let me just say its every bit as good as roadside assistance. I know, because I read it during my lunch hour at work and had the hardest time putting it down and going back to work. I will even admit that I left the book at work and didnt remember until I reached home where I promptly turned around and went back after it!
Were talking Nashville traffic, people during rush hour! My normal trip home usually takes 25 minutes; this round trip took almost 90 minutes!
But I finally got home, ate dinner and wrote this review now I can finish destination unknown!
I started this back in September when browsing a bookstore with my best friend. Sadly I didn't have time to finish it - only got to around page 50 or so. But I wanted to find out what happened to Emily when she found herself uprooted from her small home, her car, her school and her friends. And I finally got that chance when my sister brought it home over spring break.
Emily's dad, Brad, is a car mechanic and owns his own garage where Emily has spent many a day over the course of her seventeen years. She would much rather have grease under the nails than polish on them. But Emily's mom just passed away from cancer and the bills have eaten up all of their savings plus their house and business. So they move to Uncle Chuck and Aunt Darlene's house in a fancy neighborhood (Uncle Chuck is a banker) while her dad searches for a job and pays off their debts.
Whenever Emily has spent time with her dad's sister and family she feels like they want to change her and don't and won't accept her for who she is. Her aunt wants to change her hair and clothes and her choice in makeup (little to none) and her grandma only talks about her cousin. Her cousin Whitney, who is a cheerleader, who makes good grades and who is constantly held up as a model to follow.
Needless to say Emily is not thrilled about the move. But once she gets there she finds that life might not be that bad after all. The boy next door (who happens to be quite cute) has an old that he is trying to restore and a garage full of tools. Plus he's a great listener and genuinely wants to help her found the faith she lost when her mother died.
That's one thing I really liked about Roadside Assistance it wasn't full of platitudes people say when someone loses a loved one. Amy Clipston does an excellent job chronicling Emily's pain and grief and anger at losing her mom. While also dealing with moving to a new place, starting her senior year at a strange school and needing boy advice.
Another aspect that I really liked was how everyone else in the story had a part to play and lessons to learn themselves. But the best part is Emily's talent and love for working on cars. Specifically Chevys. It adds a fun an unique angle on the story, she isn't your typical 17 year old. And stereotypes don't hold for several other characters as well.
It's clean with a couple of kisses. Personally I think high school romance is silly because it rarely lasts so why go through all that heartache. But to each his/her own. I enjoyed this story and I think teens would connect well with Emily.
Amish fiction author, Amy Clipson, presents the conventional spiritual journey of 17 year old Emily, in her first teen novel. Emily's life has been turned upside down since her mother died from cancer, her dad's auto shop folded, and they lost their house to foreclosure. Emily also had to sell her beloved Camaro that she had fixed up. Emily's moving in with her wealthy aunt and uncle makes her feel like a charity case and she really dislikes being compared to her beautiful cousin, Whitney. Emily avoids Whitney and her friends, her new church and even her father, finding solitude in writing journal entries to her mother in the quiet of her room. She also ponders her relationship with God. Through Emily's struggles with grief, she develops a friendship with Zander - the cute neighbor. Zander shares her passion for cars, but Emily finds his strong Christian faith a bit unnerving, but Zander fills the need Emily has for friendship and a budding romance. The characters are very well developed and the story line is enjoyable. I hope to see more teen fiction from Amy Clipson. Recommended for any reader 13 and up.
Thanks to Zondervan/ZonderKids for providing me with this complimentary copy for my review.
I just finished an outstanding book. The final page said "Roadside Assistance is Amy Clipston first novel for teens." I am happy that they put that at the end of the book. This book is for more than just teens. It is for Parents, Youth Ministers and yes for teens. I have laugh and cried. All parents should buy this for their teens. However, read it first. It will make you think about changes in your life.