REVIEW: Amy & Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

Title: Amy & Roger's Epic Detour
Author: Morgan Matson
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: May 4, 2010
Pages: 344, Hardcover
Source: Library

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.

It’s official. I have joined the Morgan Matson Fan Club. I read Second Chance Summer not too long ago, which was my first Matson book, and found it to be extremely emotional. Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour, though on the lighter side, is just as finely crafted and wonderful.

Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour is a perfect ‘feel good’ book. Amy & Roger are brought together by their parents to travel cross country. At the start of the trip they are both in a difficult place. Amy recently lost her father and blames herself. Meanwhile, Roger can’t get over his ex and the unexpected ending to their relationship. What neither one of them realizes, is that they are exactly what each other needs at this moment in their lives.

I strongly believe that people are put in your life for a reason and I feel like this book exemplifies that idea. Amy & Roger quickly fell into a comfortable routine. Whether as friends, or the possibility of more, they just worked together. I loved watching their relationship grow. It was a slow and steady build of trust and affection. They learned to let each other in a little more with each mile that passed and they ultimately helped each other move on from hard times. It was honest and sweet.

It was also fun watching them discover each other’s quirks, likes and dislikes. And how did I get this far without mentioning the playlists and fun facts about each state at the beginning of chapters. I adore details like this in books. This book had just so much personality.

Although this is a road trip book and the story spans several locations, I wouldn’t say the setting is a prominent part of the story. The focus was on Amy & Roger and them overcoming their respective hold ups, and the road trip was just a tool that gave them the time and means to do so.

So I did say this was a ‘feel good’ book. Even though the story does touch on some serious topics, the progression of events and the ending to the story made me feel good. (Well, Roger did drive me crazy a little bit, but that’s beside the point). There was promise and hope and compassion and comfort written into these pages. This story tells the start of something beautiful. A momento to the promise within the unexpected.



  1. I love it when a book has personality, little facts at the beginning of chapters is one of the things I adore :D I also believe that people come into our lives with a reason. Whether that is to stay or not, every person helps to form your personality a bit. This book sounds like adorable and something I might pick up when I'm very busy with school! :)

  2. I love that you read Morgan's books this way around, starting with Second Chance Summer. Most people I've spoken to read Amy & Roger first, but since I haven't read that yet, I'll be doing it the same way you are. I LOVED SCS, and I was worried that Amy & Roger wouldn't live up to my expectations. But YAY. I love that the characters are the focus of this, rather than the settings or the scenery. That's always a danger with roadtrip books. EEP.

  3. I have this one too! I just haven't read it yet and there is nothing that I love more than a character driven road trip book! When they're done right they can be the best! Glad you liked this one so much, guess I should make it happen sooner than later.

  4. I really enjoyed this book too. I loved the road trip part along with the writings and photos scattered throughout, what a great touch. And I loved the progression of their relationship (even though it wasn't a long time it just felt so natural and real). Great review! ~Pam

  5. Welcome to the Morgan Club. :) I re-read this book during a road trip in March and I loved it even more the second time around. I think Morgan is such a full writer... there's a little bit of everything in the story and I appreciate that so much. The playlists were especially awesome!


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