Thursday, July 9, 2015

Review: Let's Get Lost - Adi Alsaid

Let's Get Lost by Adi Alsaid
Genre: YA, contemporary
Published on July 29, 2014
Published by Harlequin Teen
Pages: 338
Read From: 6.27.15 - 6.30.15













SYNOPSIS
Five strangers. Countless adventures. One epic way to get lost. 
Four teens across the country have only one thing in common: a girl named Leila. She crashes into their lives in her absurdly red car at the moment they need someone the most. 
Hudson, Bree, Elliot, and Sonia find a friend in Leila. And when Leila leaves them, their lives are forever changed. But it is during Leila's own 4,268-mile journey that she discovers the most important truth - sometimes, what you need most is right where you started. And maybe the only way to find what you're looking for is to get lost along the way.

Review

Dear Let's Get Lost,


You haven't gotten the most glowing reviews, but I wanted to try you anyway. I like road trip fiction and was in the mood for a fun, light read. My expectations weren't very high going into you and I'm glad they weren't.

You tell the story of five teens: Hudson, living in a small town as a mechanic with a promising future as a doctor at an expensive college; Bree, a young woman living on the road while struggling with the loss of her parents; Elliot, whose declaration of love to his lifelong friend on prom night didn't go so well; and Sonia, who's dealing with the loss of her longtime boyfriend and now suffering guilt now that she's fallen in love with someone else. All four of these teens have one thing in common: Leila. When they need a helping hand the most, Leila comes into their lives in her bright red car and offers hope that they never thought was possible. Leila herself has secrets, too: she's traveling across the country to see the Northern Lights, but she's being quiet about why.

Your narration is told in five different short stories that are all connected. I liked the narration style: it was easy to follow, the writing was simplistic but charming, and it was a pure fluff read. At first, Let's Get Lost, I was prepared to be indignant with you. Hudson's story started out interesting, as he takes Leila around his small town and shows her its hidden treasures. Hudson is a friendly, nice smalltown guy, easy to like. But I was extremely unhappy with how his story ended, and I was prepared for you to be a book about irresponsible teens messing their lives up. So I left Hudson's narration, prepared for more stupidity.

Bree's narration started out with the appearance of keeping the plot up. She's run away from home, discarded all responsibility, and goes around shoplifting. I didn't find anything to like about Bree; I was too annoyed and disgusted by her behavior (for the record, I don't approve of "harmless" vandalism and "small" theft, and I do really get tired of such themes in YA contemporary). But then Bree's story took on a different turn; Leila actually helped her (unlike Hudson, whose life she kind of ruined).

Elliot's story began with him getting drunk and contemplating suicide after his best friend tells him that she doesn't want their "golden friendship" to be ruined with confessed romantic feelings. I wanted to tell Elliot to get over himself. But then Leila shows up, almost hitting him with her car, and she sets out to help him win the girl before the night is out - because that's how it always goes in the rom-coms Elliot loves so much. Sure, Elliot's story was sappy and cliche and a little ridiculous, but I actually found myself grinning ridiculously throughout all of it. Sometimes even I need sappy, and it was sweet and adorable. Elliot's story warmed my heart.

As did Sonia's. It's the eve of her best friend's wedding, but Sonia is feeling anything but joyful. She had dated her friend's brother Sam, but then he died. And now she's fallen in love with her friend's brother-in-law, and Sonia is completely wracked with guilt. Is she betraying Sam's memory? Will his family ever forgive her? Enter Leila. This story, too, had me grinning like a fool. It was so sweet and a little sad.

Finally, we get to Leila's story. We at last find out why she's going to see the Northern Lights; why she's so vague about her past when people ask. I really liked this section; it made me really attach to Leila's character. But then the ending rolled around and I was prepared to be all indignant again. All of the other parts of the story were good; what was the point of Hudson's story?! I'll give you this, Let's Get Lost: you didn't leave me hanging. Everything - absolutely everything - came around full circle.

But despite this, you were still mostly an okay book. I liked aspects of you and your characters weren't bad, but I didn't deeply attach to anyone or any of the circumstances. You were a fun, fluffy, quick read - and there's nothing wrong with that. I need that from time to time. You just weren't my favorite.

Feeling so-so,
~ Mara A. ~

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