Saturday, November 03, 2012

Review: Reunited by Hilary Weisman Graham

Reunited by Hilary Weisman Graham
Release Date: June 12, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster 
Source: Library
1 Concert
2000 Miles
3 Ex-Best Friends

Alice, Summer, and Tiernan are ex-best friends.

Back in middle school, the three girls were inseparable. They were also the number one fans of the rock band Level3.

But when the band broke up, so did their friendship. Summer ran with the popular crowd, Tiernan was a rebellious wild-child, and Alice spent high school with her nose buried in books.

Now, just as the girls are about to graduate, Level3 announces a one-time-only reunion show.

Even though the concert’s 2000 miles away, Alice buys three tickets on impulse. And as it turns out, Summer and Tiernan have their own reasons for wanting to get out of town. Good thing Alice’s graduation gift (a pea-green 1976 VW camper van known as the Pea Pod) is just the vehicle to get them there.

But on the long drive cross-country, the girls hit more than a few bumps in the road. Will their friendship get an encore or is the show really over?
I love reading books about road trips so when I saw this book at my library I snatched it up. From the very beginning, I knew I was going to enjoy this book. It had everything a good road trip book needs: interesting companions, an actual road trip, and well, random occurrences that made for a very enjoyable read. I actually finished this book in one day and afterwards, I really wanted to go on a road trip with my best friends.

One of the best aspects about this book has to do with the three girls friendship. Even if they didn't talk for a long time due to an issue freshman year, during the road trip, the three girls realize that they've always been friends. They had a friendship that was very strong and deep and unforgettable, even after all the years that had passed. As cliché as it sounds, they’re a perfect examples of how different personalities can mesh together so well. It’s actually a very realistic aspect of life: look at your own friends: are they all their own people even if they have common traits or likes? Their friendship was one of the reasons the plot itself worked so well: they each brought something different to the mix.

Speaking of plot, I think it would be amazing if my parents would let me drive down the coast to see my favorite band with my friends. For me, it’s not likely but all three girls have different reasons to go and it’s all explored in the book. While there aren’t too many details to make it seem tedious, there is enough information to satisfy any questions a reader might have. I loved all the different places they went and their complete random occasions. While the girls did have a planned rout, changes along the way made for a fun adventure. A few times, I even worried for them (being the mother hen like person I am) but overall, I enjoyed this book and the road trip involved.

Alice, Summer, and Tiernan had been friends years ago until an issue during freshman year tore them apart. It was an issue that was blown out of proportion and seemed pretty but it can happen to anyone. Reunited was written in alternating perspectives which is not my preferred format. In most cases, characterization and character development can truly be hard go achieve when alternation perspectives and I honestly felt that not much development happened. While yes, their issues were resolved in the end, I didn't feel much for it. Alice, Summer, and Tiernan actually turned out to be very stereotypical: one is the super smart, the other the popular girl, and one is the troublemaker. I had a hard time connecting with any of the three characters because I was not given much into their backgrounds to begin with.

Overall, Reunited was a good book. I loved the traveling aspect of this novel and now I want to go on a road trip with my friends but this book was not without faults. The ending became rushed and didn't feel right in the context of the book, which in turn made me dislike it a little. While I didn't hate the characters, I didn't feel much for them either. Reunited is a fun book to read, one that will make you want to go on a road trip but unfortunately, the characters didn’t work too well for me.
Cover Comments: 
Eh. I like the bright yellow actually pretty nice and different. And the I like the map and the three different people but this cover is just bland. I wanted something more. I actually like it when road trip books have photos and post cards on the cover. I want a new, fresh cover. 
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