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Don't Stop Now by Julie Halpern



Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Genre: Contemporary

Release Date: 6/7/2011

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About the Book: When Lilian receives an early morning phone call from her sort-of friend Penny saying "I did it" and Lil knows that Penny has faked her own kidnapping. Now the police are looking for Penny and asking Lil questions! Lil has an idea that Penny might be in Portland, so she enlists the help of her friend Josh to go on a quest to find Penny and bring her back. Josh isn't just Lil's best friend-he's Lil's long time crush. But Josh doesn't want to "ruin" their amazing friendship. Will a cross-country road trip help Lil figure things out?

GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: I really think Julie Halpern's books get better with each one she writes-which is saying a lot because I think all of her books are pretty awesome!! I swear Ms. Halpern looked into my road trip dreams and wrote this book. I've always wanted to take a massive road trip stopping at cheesy tourist attractions (we did this when I was a kid and I loved it!) I loved that she used real places for Lil and Josh to visit. Some of them I'd been to or heard about and the descriptions and banter between Lil and Josh made it feel as though I was there with them.

The banter between Lil and Josh is awesome. They are both witty and hilarious and I wanted to hang out with them. This isn't just a road trip book, this is a story about navigating that tricky time between high school and college and facing and uncertain future. How can your past self and future self collide and what will happen to the relationships in your past as you move on and grow up? The emotional ride of growing up and feeling in limbo is captured perfectly.

I really liked that while there is a romance aspect to the storyline, it's not the main focus of the book. This is more about Lil and figuring out how to move on. I also liked that the romance wasn't a fairy tale but instead felt very real-both are questioning what will happen to their friendship not only this summer but once college starts.

We get glimpses of Penny throughout the story and I liked this added element. This wasn't just a story about Lil and Josh, but Penny as well. I would have liked to see more about Penny-why was she so interested in Gavin? I liked the picture we got of Penny-she's such an interesting character and I wanted just a bit more. I also thought things ended a bit too easily for her.

Don't Stop Now is a perfect road trip, summer read. Add it to the top of your "read every summer to get into a summer mood" pile because it's one you'll want to read again!

Book Pairings: Amy and Rogers Epic Detour by Morgan Matson, Two Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt

Full Disclosure: Reviewed from an ARC sent by the author for review

Comments

  1. I was wondering about this one but now i have to get it. Thanks for the review. :)

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  2. This book really does sound like a cute fast paced read, I loved Amy & Roger's Epic Detour...so I bet I'll end up loving this one too! Glad you reviewed it.

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  3. Karen-I really liked it-a perfect summer read.

    Allison-I just started Amy and Roger's Epic Detour and I think this one pairs very nicely with it!

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  4. I LOVED this book!! It also made me want to just jump in my car and hit up every road side attraction I could find.

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  5. This was a great road trip book. I really enjoy her writing.

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  6. Julie Halpern hit it out of the park with the road trip novel, didn't she? This one just spoke summer to me. Nice review!

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Hello! My name is Sarah and I am a Youth Services Manager who works with kids, tweens and teens. I love being asked about great books to read! I started my blog in 2008 as a way to keep track of what I've been reading and to use a reference tool for reader's advisory and it's grown into much more than I could have ever anticipated. In addition to book reviews, I also enjoy posting audiobook reviews, booklists and my adventures in being a librarian. 2017 Library Journal Mover and Shaker Committees: 2021 Newbery Committee 2018 Odyssey Committee 2016 Caldecott Award 2013 Michael L. Printz Committee- Fabulous Films Committee I have also served on the Cybils, Missouri State Library Association Readers Selection Lists, and as an Audies judge. Presentations :  I have offered various presentations at local, state and national libraries and conferences. Topics have included:  What's New in Children's & Teen Literature Engaging Teens in Reader's Advisory Gee