Author: Jessi Kirby
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Publication Date: May 8, 2012
Source: ARC for Teen Book Scene blog tour
About the Book: A devastating loss leads to an unexpected road trip in this novel from the author of Moonglass, whose voice Sarah Dessen says “is fresh and wise, all at once.”
Hours after her brother’s military funeral, Honor opens the last letter Finn ever sent. In her grief, she interprets his note as a final request and spontaneously decides to go to California to fulfill it.
Honor gets as far as the driveway before running into Rusty, Finn’s best friend since third grade and his polar opposite. She hasn’t seen Rusty in ages, but it’s obvious he is as arrogant and stubborn as ever—not to mention drop-dead gorgeous. Despite Honor’s better judgment, the two set off together on a voyage from Texas to California. Along the way, they find small and sometimes surprising ways to ease their shared loss and honor Finn’s memory—but when shocking truths are revealed at the end of the road, will either of them be able to cope with the consequences? (from goodreads)
My Thoughts: This book opens with the military funeral for Honor's brother (this is not a spoiler. It's in the description!) To me, this was such an amazing opening scene. It grabbed my attention and my heart even though I didn't even know the characters yet. I have a page of notes on this scene alone. It was so well done. I found myself so emotionally invested that I had to put the book down and walk away for a bit. It was just so overwhelming. Very few books have ever had such a profound effect on me and never that quickly. It was pretty intense.
Thankfully the rest of the book, while still awesome, didn't rip my heart out ;) I mean, it's certainly still emotional... a road trip to fulfill Honor's dead brother's last request? Yeah. There are going to be some hard hitting moments for sure! But it's still a road trip with a hot boy. I loved seeing Honor and Rusty interact. There is history and tension there that the reader doesn't quite get right away. Learning more about it as well as the changes in Honor and Rusty really kept me invested. There were so many great scenes along the road trip. I love the variety of locations a road trip brings to a book. The fact that the characters are stuck in close proximity to one another the whole time adds to the tension I love so much.
In Honor broke my heart within the first pages and then put it back together piece by piece. It's a great addition to contemporary YA!