If seventeen-year-old Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing standing between straightedge Skylar and art school are three minimum-wage months of summer. Skylar can taste the freedom—that is, until her mother loses her job and everything starts coming apart. Torn between her dreams and the people she loves, Skylar realizes everything she’s ever worked for is on the line.
Nineteen-year-old Josh Mitchell had a different ticket out of Creek View: the Marines. But after his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be. What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s dusty Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and soon, something deeper.
- The location of the book had to be my favorite part. It was this small, unknown town in California. It is a dusty, rundown town. It is only of those towns that either people are going to live in forever or they cannot wait to get away. I grew up in a small town, so I could definitely relate to the atmosphere in the town. Everyone knows everyone else’s business and there are no secrets.
- I loved the main character, Skylar. I wanted so badly to see her collages. I wish that there were images with the book, because I had the most amazing idea of what they looked like. This was one of those things that you just need to see in person, in real living color. I would love to find some fan art depicting the collage of the town.
- The hotel sounded so amazing. I loved the crazy, themed rooms. I would definitely stay there in a heartbeat. Plus, I would kill for a pool to just float around in when I am not working. It just sounded like this sleepy, peaceful place in the midst of then craziness. Plus the owner was amazing. I just wanted to be part of her life, especially after we heard her story.
- Josh. Oh, Josh. I loved the relationship between the two. The slow burn and the way they kept each other at an arms-length, but I also loved the way they talked to each other and told each other the truth. Skylar did pity Josh for his leg and did not treat him like a war hero, which is exactly what he needed.
- This book was so raw and full of real emotion. I felt for Skylar’s friends, who each had their own dreams and sometimes that did not work out the way they expected them to or what they had envisioned for each other. I realize this is a very confusing sentence, but sometimes it is so hard to write reviews without spoiling anything!
- Skylar’s mom was so awful. I cannot imagine growing up like that, not being able to depend on the adult or guardian who is supposed to be there to protect you, to guide you. Skylar had to fight for what she had, work multiple jobs but then also feel like she needed to be her mother’s support system and make sure that she was taken care of. She had a lot on her back and it was awesome that she turned out the way she did.
- The writing in this book was honest. It just connected so well and really took me into the story, I felt the town, the vibe, the emotion.