Amy Curry thinks her life sucks. Her mom decides to move from California to Connecticut to start anew--just in time for Amy's senior year. Her dad recently died in a car accident. So Amy embarks on a road trip to escape from it all, driving cross-country from the home she's always known toward her new life. Joining Amy on the road trip is Roger, the son of Amy's mother's old friend. Amy hasn't seen him in years, and she is less than thrilled to be driving across the country with a guy she barely knows. So she's surprised to find that she is developing a crush on him. At the same time, she's coming to terms with her father's death and how to put her own life back together after the accident. Told in traditional narrative as well as scraps from the road--diner napkins, motel receipts, postcards--this is the story of one girl's journey to find herself.
The characters are likeable, believable, with justified emotions, and have convincing motivations. Besides those logical reasons, there is just something about the characters in Amy and Roger's Epic Detour that make it so likeable; they're all so likeable and quirky in their own ways. While some do play up to clichés, it is not annoying or exhausting, but the exact opposite; cute.
The atmosphere of the novel is light-hearted and is pure escapism that easily takes your mind off the outside world for a while. This is added to by Matson's use of media scattered throughout the text.
The use of travel journals, postcards, photos, playlists, (and much more that starts with a p!) is what makes the story so easy to assimilate into. Pages like the one shown above feature all the way through the text and give it that third dimension; as if the events actually took place.
Overall, Amy and Roger's Epic Detour is a really cute read that won't make you cry, or throw the book across the room. It's the emotional middle ground that has just enough of each to make it engaging. It's plot is satisfying and closes it up while still leaving you in hope for another of Matson's instalments.
I think you will enjoy Amy & Roger's Epic Detour if you are female and between 12 and 16 or 17. If you enjoyed it you might like Meg Cabot, Kody Keplinger or Sarra Manning, and vice versa.