Title: The Way Back to You
Author: Michelle Andreani & Mindi Scott
Page Count: 371
Ashlyn Montiel died six months ago. Her best friend Cloudy acts like everything is fine but on the inside she’s miserable. And Kyle, who was Ashlyn’s boyfriend, is falling apart. His friends are worried about him because he’s not interested in the same things he used to be. Cloudy and Kyle are not on speaking terms due to an incident last year that neither wants to talk about. But Cloudy finds out that Ashlyn’s organs were donated to three recipients and she has the crazy idea to visit them and see if they carry a little bit of Ashlyn with them now. And the first person she thinks of taking on this trip, Kyle, is the one person she is not speaking to, but this trip may help him. As they travel from Oregon to California to Arizona to Nevada, they both hope to see their way back to her and the people who are alive because of Ashlyn.
I love a good road trip book. It can be amazing, if the story is done well because you can picture yourself in all of these wonderful places. My favorite place in this book was Arizona. Sedona, Arizona to be exact. The way the author describes it, makes it sound beautiful and I’ve added it to my bucket list. But the premise of the book wasn’t delivered in the end. At least, not for me. I was expecting the focus of the story to be about these two kids who learn to, not move on from the death of their friend, but to get some closure. They are both so upset about her death and they need something good in their lives. So going to see these recipients who received Ashlyn’s organs, sounds like a really good idea. But the story seemed to focus more on the romance between Cloudy and Kyle and I wasn’t so pleased with that.
There was one specific incident in the book that was so weird. They go to Sedona, Arizona because that is where Kyle grew up. So he meets up with a friend who tells him that some of his high school friends are meeting up for a birthday party for a girl named Hannah. When we meet Hannah she’s very protective over Kyle and tries to push Cloudy out of the picture. We don’t know anything about Hannah, other than she went to school with Kyle and she’s acting all jealous that he is there with Cloudy and I just didn’t really understand why the author chose to give Hannah that kind of personality. It was weird and awkward because we don’t have any background information on Hannah and Kyle’s friendship or relationship.
I couldn’t connect with either of the characters. Thankfully, I haven’t lost anyone close to me so I couldn’t understand their grief but I also didn’t connect with their personalities either. I thought the story was good but I was expecting more from it. More of a journey through Cloudy and Kyle’s loss and them becoming friends again. I didn’t want the romance and I would have been happy if they had just remained friends.