Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Destination Unknown {by Amy Clipston}

Title: Destination Unknown
Author: Amy Clipston
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble

It's senior year, and Whitney Richards is tired of the constant pressures to be perfect. When she gets a D in Calculus, her mother immediately hires a tutor, worried Whitney won't get into the 'right' college---her alma mater---with imperfect grades. Her tutor, Taylor, is a quiet, mysterious boy who is unlike anyone Whitney has met before. But Taylor's rougher upbringing has her mother and friends discouraging any type of relationship. Tired of having to play a part for everyone else, Whitney quits the cheerleading squad that once defined her social identity, and begins spending more time with Taylor. Her mom and friends worry Whitney is making a huge mistake, and even Taylor begins to show concern for some of her choices. But for the first time, Whitney is in the driver's seat of her life. Will she be able to find her identity---and God's plan for her life---before she throws everything away?

I loved this book. I will start out by saying that this book may not be for everyone. It is Christian fiction, but it isn't preachy, and I think that this is one that can be enjoyed by all people. I loved it (did I already say that?) but more on that later.

Whitney is a senior in high school. If that doesn't come with enough stress, her mother's pressures to be "perfect" are causing Whitney to crack. She doesn't even know who she is, but it's about time she figured it out. Then she meets Taylor, a loner, and starts to rethink some of her life choices.

I think one of the reasons I loved this book so much was because I could relate to it so much. Me personally, more than most, because I went through some of these exact same things. What Whitney was experiencing, I knew for a fact how it felt, and Clipston relayed the feelings so realistically and perfectly. I can't say I went through everything Whitney did (I never hid a boyfriend from my mom, if you were starting to question me), but as a recent high school grad, I knew that Whitney and her struggles were portrayed very realistically.

I realize that some people might not like Whitney, or the story, as much because of how much Whitney lies and deceives her mother. I'm not saying I agree with that either, but Whitney's struggles and internal turmoil were very clear and realistic. Teenagers make mistakes. It's a fact of life. But this highlighted how much Whitney matures by the end of the book, and how she realizes her mistakes and the consequences of them.

Although, I will say, I wouldn't even know how to deal with a mom as crazy as Whitney's. I mean, even telling her what color her hair should be? That is just extreme. Her nonacceptance and judgmental attitude of Taylor and his family made me want to slap her. And wonder what in the world she was doing in a church. (Which, I realize, it judgmental of me. Sorry.) .

Speaking of, I wish there had been guys like that in my high school. Sure, he was your stereotypical "loner who rode a motorcycle but had a heart of gold" which is way overdone, but do we fall for it every time? Um YES. Just the way he cared for him mom and sis was so sweet. There is no way this kid will not win over your heart.

I also loved the appearances from characters from the companion novel, Roadside Assistance, like Emily and Zander. All in all, I think this is a great book that (hopefully!) you will love. 

Companion Novel:
Roadside Assistance

*This novel is Christian fiction
This review can also be found on   Rachel Marie's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. This does not affect my opinion in any way.

Amy Clipston:

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