It all begins with a stupid question:
Are you a Global Vagabond?
No, but 18-year-old Bria Sandoval wants to be. In a quest for independence, her neglected art, and no-strings-attached hookups, she signs up for a guided tour of Central America—the wrong one. Middle-aged tourists with fanny packs are hardly the key to self-rediscovery. When Bria meets Rowan, devoted backpacker and dive instructor, and his outspokenly humanitarian sister Starling, she seizes the chance to ditch her group and join them off the beaten path.
Bria’s a good girl trying to go bad. Rowan’s a bad boy trying to stay good. As they travel across a panorama of Mayan villages, remote Belizean islands, and hostels plagued with jungle beasties, they discover what they’ve got in common: both seek to leave behind the old versions of themselves. And the secret to escaping the past, Rowan’s found, is to keep moving forward.
But Bria comes to realize she can’t run forever, no matter what Rowan says. If she ever wants the courage to fall for someone worthwhile, she has to start looking back.
Kirsten Hubbard lends her artistry to this ultimate backpacker novel, weaving her drawings into the text. Her career as a travel writer and her experiences as a real-life vagabond backpacking Central America are deeply seeded in this inspiring story.
What a fabulous read this book turned out to be for me. I mean, I had a feeling that I would enjoy this book a lot more than I expected and I’m glad that I wasn’t wrong because this book was such a delightful treat. I mean from the way that it was written to the illustrations that were included in the book, this was just so full of awesome.
It was an entertaining read from beginning to end. Bria was an interesting character that I wanted to be friends with and she was definitely the person that I wanted by my side whenever I traveled to far away places. Her thoughts and her voice was so engaging that I ate this book up in no time. She wasn’t the most perfect of protagonists but I was okay with that. She jumped to conclusions, she didn’t trust Rowan enough but I didn’t blame her for any of that stuff because she didn’t know Rowan very well and what I liked most about Bria was that she was just so…real. She thought real thoughts, she suffered from real problems and she reacted the way a real person would. I enjoyed getting to know her and I enjoyed reading about her journey through life in this book.
Aside from Bria, I enjoyed the other characters in the book as well. From Rowan to Starling and even Glenna. They were all enjoyable additions to the book and I was glad. They added a bit of color to an already colorful story and it was a fun way to spend a few hours before bed. I enjoyed this book almost as much as if it was a road trip book (and you guys all know how I feel about road trip books).
I hated Toby throughout the book and even though I wished that Bria would have gotten over him a bit sooner than she actually did, I understood why she couldn’t shake her feelings and I really liked that she was frustrated with herself for still thinking about him. I liked that she wanted to get over him and I really enjoyed seeing her get over Toby and go after the things she loved before he ruined them for her. When she finally calls her parents to tell them where she was, I loved their reaction. I liked that they knew and were pissed to high heaven at her for not calling sooner. I really liked that they were worried and I was glad that by the time she did call them, she had finally gotten all of her crap under control.
Overall, this book was a treat. I’m oh so glad that I read it and while it wasn’t the most perfect of reads, it was an enjoyable story with characters that leaped right off the pages and into my heart. This book gets a high B so kudos to Kirsten Hubbard on a job well done writing this story.
..and that’s your scoop!
Buy the book: Amazon
Book cover and blurb credit: http://barnesandnoble.com