Along For The Ride by Sarah DessenAlong For The Ride by Sarah Dessen

Along For The Ride

bySarah Dessen

Paperback | April 19, 2011

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From the award-winning and New York Times bestselling author of Once and For All

Nights have always been Auden’s time, her chance to escape everything that’s going on around her.
Then she meets Eli, a fellow insomniac, and he becomes her nocturnal tour guide.
Now, with an endless supply of summer nights between them, almost anything can happen. . . .
“As with all Dessen’s books, [this] is a must-have” —VOYA, starred review

Sarah Dessen is the winner of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for her contributions to YA literature, as well as the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award.
Books by Sarah Dessen:
That Summer
Someone Like You
Keeping the Moon
This Lullaby
The Truth About Forever
Just Listen
Lock and Key
Along for the Ride
What Happened to Goodbye
The Moon and More
Saint Anything

Once and for All
Sarah Dessen is the author of thirteen novels, which include the New York Times bestsellers The Moon and More, What Happened to Goodbye, Along for the Ride, Lock and Key, Just Listen, The Truth About Forever, and This Lullaby. Her first two books, That Summer and Someone Like You, were made into the movie How to Deal.  Dessen’s books...
Title:Along For The RideFormat:PaperbackDimensions:432 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 1.06 inPublished:April 19, 2011Publisher:Penguin Young Readers GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0142415561

ISBN - 13:9780142415566

Appropriate for ages: 13 - 17


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! I love Sarah Dessen's books! Great young adult novels!
Date published: 2018-07-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love! The characters really grow in this book. Auden and her mom both realize that they shouldn't underestimate or look down upon women who like/engage in traditionally feminine things. Really enjoyed reading about how Auden starts out as a loner but then develops really strong female friendships and finds love with the mysterious Eli along the way. I wish Auden stood up for herself more. There was a conversation she had with her dad near the end that could have been really impactful if she actually spoke her mind, rather than skirt around the topic, and then said goodbye. Like tell your neglectful dad how you feel.
Date published: 2018-06-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Book I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Sarah Dessen manages to create these worlds full of characters that you can't help but want to read more about in small towns that you can't help but imaging yourself right there with them. This is one of my favourite books from the young adult author!
Date published: 2018-05-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read Absolutely love Sarah Dessen books! She writes great young adult romance novels!
Date published: 2018-05-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A fast read! Not as good as Dessen's earlier stuff, but still an enjoyable contemp YA read!
Date published: 2018-02-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok unfortunately, I was just disappointed throughout the whole book.
Date published: 2018-01-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Amazing book! It's great for a light read, and you expect nothing but the best from Sarah Dessen.
Date published: 2017-12-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Sweet and simple! Sarah Dessen knows how to keep the storyline simple, such as setting it in a small town but fills it with diverse and multi-dimensional characteristics making the store intriguing and delightful. Eli, just an ordinary person brings such a spark to Auden's life that takes readers along for a great ride.
Date published: 2017-12-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Okay Not my favourite. Definitely worth reading if you are into YA books and are having a hard time in high school. Meant more for a younger crowd who can relate.
Date published: 2017-11-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Good read, just a bit of a slow start so you have to stick with it! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-10-12
Rated 2 out of 5 by from An Okay Read This book was only okay for me. I didn't really enjoy it that much. It was quite slow up until the end, but I feel that if you love Sarah Dessen and are also into YA Contemporary/Romance then you'll enjoy it. This book is written for young adults. It's a good read for summer as well.
Date published: 2017-09-10
Rated 2 out of 5 by from disappointed I'm sad this book was so hyped but i was disappointed
Date published: 2017-09-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from a favourite I loved this book, a great summer read. I love how its not just like every other teen book, but deals with problems outside of romance.
Date published: 2017-08-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved this Interesting story Since the first novel I've read by Sarah Dessen, I've loved her way of writing! This novel was just as amazing.
Date published: 2017-07-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from good! Great summer read, keeps your attention the whole way through, cute typical teen romance book!
Date published: 2017-07-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Along For the Ride A great romance with likable characters. A fun read.
Date published: 2017-07-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome! Lots of metaphors, great characters and an awesome romance.
Date published: 2017-06-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love it ! I wasn't sure at first, but once I picked up the book and started to read it I loved it. Over the past few years I have re read it at least three time and I've fallen in love with the main characters even more every time.
Date published: 2017-06-23
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Slow but cute I really liked the main character and how she gets to know other people and her family better. It was a cute if somewhat slow read.
Date published: 2017-06-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I LOVE it One of the best books i have ever read! I re-read it ever summer!!!
Date published: 2017-06-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love it This book never fails to amaze me. I've read the book a lot of times already and I still fall inlove with the story every time.
Date published: 2017-05-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Along For The Ride This book was one of my favourites when I was younger. As with all Sarah Dessen books, I read it over and over in my teenage years. Recently I re-read as an adult and I was still in love with the story and the characters. I saw somewhere that reading a Sarah Dessen book is like eating comfort food, you always know what you are going to get and you are always going to enjoy it. I think that is the perfect way to describe her books.
Date published: 2017-03-29
Rated 1 out of 5 by from don't disgrace bikes like this If you want an easy read, go read a meaningful children's book. Those are more original and tend to have better messages than anything Dessen has written.
Date published: 2017-03-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great. Love, love, love Sarah Dessen's books.
Date published: 2017-03-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great!! This was the first book i bough by Sarah Dessen and i loved it! Ive since gone on to read the rest of her books and she is by far one of my favourite authors
Date published: 2017-03-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love it A wonderfully written story and another great addition to the Sarah Dessen collection of books.
Date published: 2017-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Classic Sarah Dessen This is my second favorite Sarah Dessen book (the first is The Truth About Forever). It's a wonderful story to read. I definitely recommend reading this one in the summer because it has that summer vibe.
Date published: 2017-03-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved This! such a great book, one of my favorites by Sarah Dessen!!
Date published: 2017-03-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really good This was the first book I read from Sarah Dessen. I loved it so much i went out and bought more of her books and was in love. She is by far one of my Favourite authors. Exceptionally written for more teen and tween reads but would definitely recommend.
Date published: 2017-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from excellent Loved this book! well written and captures your attention.
Date published: 2017-02-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So good. Spellbinding. I love this one.
Date published: 2017-01-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a good book! This book is both cute and relatable, it's intriguing and engaging. Couldn't put it down the whole time. Definitely recommend this book! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really Cute Probably my favourite Dessen book. It rings really true for people whose parents are split up, it was powerful to me.
Date published: 2017-01-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a cute book! "what defines you isn't how many times you crash, but the number of times you get back on the bike. As long as it's one more, you're all good."
Date published: 2017-01-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! I loved this, just as I love all of Dessen's books!
Date published: 2017-01-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from :) Sarah did something a little different with this one, and I can't place my finger on it but I noticed it during the entire book. It's a good type of different from the previous novels I've read of hers, but she still managed to create a great story with amazingly unique three-dimensional characters.
Date published: 2016-12-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Light Read! I love books by Sarah Dessen because they are easy light reads that are great to induldge in when you are in between series or woud like a quick read. I normally devour her novels in less than a day because I am always so intrugued by her characters, and Along For The Ride is no exception. Awesome read for a carefree afternoon or a cozy evening with a captivating book.
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Nice read A light and enjoyable book by Sarah Dessen
Date published: 2016-11-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyable I felt it was missing something. I just thought it was not up to par to the other books I've read from the same author but I still really enjoyed it although the beginning seemed a little slow.
Date published: 2016-11-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favourite book ever! I don't know what I would do without this book. So great!
Date published: 2016-11-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really liked it! Amazing book!!
Date published: 2016-01-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really enjoyed I really enjoyed this book. Great YA read.
Date published: 2015-12-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from This book was a wonderful read. Auden is a hard-working, focused young woman. However, she is spending the summer in a small beach town with her father and his new family causing her to eventually come to realization that she's missed on so much. Eli, who is a fellow insomniac, becomes her guide in her journey to go through the same experiences all normal teenagers go through, while Eli tries to accept the death of a friend. This story really impacts you in many ways. It's written in a powerful way and keeps you interested until the end. I give it 4-5 stars!
Date published: 2014-01-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from THE BEST OF ALL!!1 I am a HUGE fan of Sarah Dessen and I have almost all of her published bu from all f them, Along for the Ride is for sure my favourite! It was sooooo good!!!!! Not exactly your typical cliché story, but thats what makes it soooo good!!!
Date published: 2013-11-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book! Really good story. Like all Dessen's books.
Date published: 2013-09-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My favourite book by Sarah Dessen! I don't even know where to start. This book was absolutely enchanting. Eli and Auden are both mysterious characters that seem to keep to themselves... Although they are extremely likeable and admirable. The story itself is just lovely... I don't want to say too much without giving it away! I STRONGLY recommend this book to any teenaged girl. You will love it for sure!
Date published: 2013-04-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My New Favourite Dessen Book! Along for the ride is an amazing book! Its fun and has great, true-to-life characters, and great sidestories about general problems in life and how to deal with them. It really showed me another side to Sarah Dessen, bringing out more real life issues and it changes my view on her. After reading The Truth About Forever and Lock and Key, both of which i enjoyed very much, and then Someone Like You, which i felt was really dull and had no appeal, Along For The Ride is Dessen's best written book, in my opinion. The characters are real and are each unique, and the concept and plot stands out among Dessens other books. There are great life messages for teens, like in other Dessen books, and its written really, really, well.The characters stand out most, in my eyes. Overall, this is a great book for teens, definitely my favourite Dessen book!
Date published: 2013-03-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Along for the Ride *This review was originally posted on my blog on May 30th, 2011* This was the first Sarah Dessen book I'd read since my teens, and it reminded me why I loved her all those years ago. I love Auden, I think she's a terrific, multi-faceted character. Her parents are selfish and self-important - they're both highly educated with excellent jobs - and because of their selfishness, Auden's learned to take care of herself and be independent. Between her parents and her free-spirited, irresponsible brother Hollis, she's the only real adult of the family. When she moves to Colby, it's like a whole different world and she finally realizes she doesn't have to always be the adult, she can be a kid. She's never really had friends, and didn't think she was missing out on that or other teenage experiences. There were more important things in life than the things teenage girls seem to be interested in - clothes, parties, boys, etc. She had always concentrated on what she thought was important - school, and keeping up with her parents' expectations. I loved following along with Auden's transformation over the summer. She learns that people aren't always what they appear, and that if you look deeper than the surface, you might be surprised. That's true of herself too - she's always been a certain person and she realizes she doesn't have to be that person, she can break away and be whoever she wants to be. I felt like I was along for the ride that Auden was taking, and I didn't want it to end. This is the first truly excellent book I've read in awhile, and I can't wait to read more of Sarah's books. In fact, when I'm done reading her newer books, I think I'll reread the three of hers that I read as a teen - That Summer, Someone Like You, and Keeping the Moon.
Date published: 2012-10-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from READ IN 2 HOURS!!!! I Really Loved This One, Absolutely The Best Sarah Dessen Novel Ive Read So Far, Even Though Ive Only Read This Lullaby And Along For The Ride. I Give It 4 STARS!!!!! Would Read It Over And Overrrrrr xD I Really Wish Sarah Dessen Had Longer Books Though I Feel Like All Of Her Books End The Same... The Girls Going Off To College And Leaving The Amazingly Sweet Guys But, Her Storys End Awesome (x So Thats All That Matters!
Date published: 2012-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from the best one yet! when i was reading this book i felt like if it was me the caracter and that never happend to me-good thing-. when i finished this book i melted, such a good book. definantly i would re-read it. the words were so perfect and the story was so good. it's briliant! cant stop talking about it
Date published: 2011-08-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I'm in Love This book is amazing. I got it in hardcover when it first came out & I've read it twice since the paperback came out. I don't re-read books often since there are millions out there to read for the first time but this book just doesn not get old! I highly recommend it :)
Date published: 2011-07-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This book was absolutely amazing, turned out to be such a page turner! I reccommend it to anybody who likes a bit of romance, but fun along with it. I got tired of reading teenage romance books that were about 14 & 15 year olds that were so unrealistic. This book is based on 18 year olds and older, it was perfect! Read it, you won't be let down. Also what was great is the book is a bit thicker then my other books, so it lasted a lot longer :)
Date published: 2011-07-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Along for the Ride. This book was much more than I expected. I absolutely adored it, and would definitely recommend it to anyone. Before, I had only read two of Sarah Dessen's books, now I'm hooked on her writing, I love it. I bought Along for the Ride yesterday evening, and I finished it today. I just couldn't put it down! It was a great summer read! :)
Date published: 2011-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Along for the ride! I know I was I felt I could really relate to this character. I loved this book. Although she didn't have what would seem like such a big issue compared to Dessen's other novels it was a big issue one that people never notice or talk about. The ability to have a relationship with a parent. This book was so touching and it was a character i felt i could relate to.
Date published: 2011-05-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not a typical romance novel.. in a good way :D I actually really liked this book; it was not exactly predictable like other romance books... And, it was nice how it had a theme to it- second chances and all. It wasn't even a typical main character. I liked how it was different.. not just the same thing over and over again. :)
Date published: 2011-04-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Along For The Ride This book was ok. It was not one of Sarah Dessens better ones. It started off really slow, and was slow all during the rest of the book, It wasnt until the end that I actually started to like it, But even then, it was still pretty predictable.
Date published: 2011-02-02
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Dragged Along For The Ride. I picked this one up to try something new. I didn't expect much out of this book, and I honestly didn't get much out of it. I enjoy reading books that are interesting and exciting, this one wasn't either one. It's basically a cliché' "My parents are divorced, I'm going to spend the summer with my father who ignores me, I hate when my parents fight, blah blah blah...nothing new. We've all heard this story before. I couldn't relate to the plot at all, it could have been cool with the whole "Bike Park" thing...but unfortunately it focussed more on the relationship with her step-mom and new baby sister. No one cares about them!! If you're looking for a book that you won't be able to put down, THIS ISN'T IT!
Date published: 2011-01-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really cute! I absolutely love Sarah Dessen’s writing. Whenever I read her books, majority of them that I have read so far I could not put down! This had been one of them! I don't know how long I waited to read this book, and bam! I finally decided to get it. The main character goes through her own little issues and trauma that makes everything seem so real. The writing of this book was perfectly smooth and the relationship between the two characters goes into some inner fully developed depth. It was an overall quick read, and enjoyable – I would definitely read it again! You won’t be disappointed.
Date published: 2010-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from how does Sarah Dessen do it?? The more I read Sarah Dessem books, the more I fall in love with her. I don't know what to say anymore , it was AMAZING, GREAT, COULDN''T PUT IT DOWN, FRIKIN AMAZING, SPEECHLESS ON HOW GOOD IT WAS, RECOMMENDING IT TO ALL MY FRIENDS... those are all a given, so what do I say know.?? It was really really really really good, and you should read it XD
Date published: 2010-05-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Sweet This book was awesome. It is about Eli and Auden and how they find each other. They both have problems falling asleep. Along the way they find each other during the night and spend their time driving around town, stopping at the Gas/Gro, and doing laundry until they can fall asleep. In this sweet story about second chances Eli helps Auden accomplish things that she missed out on during her childhood. And Auden helps Eli overcome his sadnees of his best friend dieing in a tragic car accident. Through their time together they find what they were really looking for, each other, companinship and understanding. A very sweet book!
Date published: 2010-02-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from What a Ride! An amazing read. The characters were developed slowly but it was worth it. A must read.
Date published: 2010-02-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Come Along for This Ride Another great novel from Dessen. Dessen managed, as she always does, to make you as a reader get so involved with her characters. I felt so horrible for Auden and there were numerous times I wanted to reach in and slap her parents. Especially when you could see Auden's stepmother struggling so much with the new baby and how oblivious he (Auden's dad) was about it. The story of Auden on her quest was a delight and while it was a long time coming it was almost more special her being able to really realize the delight of playing bowling and coming to terms that she doesn't have to be the best at everything.
Date published: 2009-10-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Another Awesome Book By Sarah Dessen Along for the Ride is now up there with my favourite of Sarah Dessen`s : The Truth About Forever. This book has something that really captivated me. I`m guessing it was because this book was based more during the night, then the day. But either way, it was a really good read. And for those that aren`t yet Sarah Dessen fans, you should reeally read this.
Date published: 2009-10-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Least Favourite of Dessen's, but Still Good The characters were good, the story was okay, but it wasn't on the same level as Dessen's others. If you've never read Sarah Dessen before, I wouldn't read this one first. That's not to say, however, that you shouldn't read this book if you're in the mood for an easy read.
Date published: 2009-08-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Eliiiii <3 This was the first Sarah Deseen book i ever read and i loooveed it espicalled Eli and Auden, and Thisbe All characters are so well developed
Date published: 2009-07-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from She's done it again! I have read most of Sarah Dessen's books and have never once been disappointed. So, when I picked this book up, I was sure it was going to be great. And it was! Eli and Auden's relationship is different than what most people might expect. They're similar, but at the same time they're so different. This book was excellent and was definitely a good read! For anyone who has never read any of SD's books, man, you've gotta check them out 'cuz you won't be disappointed!
Date published: 2009-07-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Good Read This was a really good book. Its exactly what you expect from Sarah Dessen which is nothing short of FAB-U-LOUS :) I really reccomend this book to anyone. The book was very consistent I never found a boring spot. It was really VERY good. **spoilers*** I hated it when Auden totally messed things up with Eli and then agreed to go with Jason (even though it didnt really work). I wanted to stop reading at that point but I knew it would get better. And I liked the ending how her and Eli still saw each other. It was AWESOME
Date published: 2009-07-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I was along for the ride from the first word! I love this book! I was along for the ride right from the first word. I love the depth of the main characters. This book makes me want to come up with a quest of my own!
Date published: 2009-06-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great summer read! Truly an amazing book. I recommend it to anyone looking for not a light and airy summer read, but one with more depth. Though it was not my favorite Sarah Dessen book it is absolutely worth the time. My favorite would have to be 'Truth About Forever'.
Date published: 2009-06-27
Rated 2 out of 5 by from it was okay I've never read a Sarah Dessen book before, but from what I was hearing they were good and with this book I thought it was alittle boring. I only really kept reading it to see if more of Eli would come in, there wasn't enough of him.
Date published: 2009-06-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Sweet ride Auden (my new favorite name) is moving in with her father, her step-mother and her new half sister for the summer before college. Having lived her entire life in academia, she begins to realize just what she missed out on as she spends the summer with people her own age. I was worried that Auden and her saga were going to be too close to characters in Dessen's other books, but the worry was unfounded. Auden was strong, and she grew into a fuller, richer person as the book went on. LOVED IT!!!!!
Date published: 2009-06-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it ! I really loved the book and definatly met my expectations. I loved the characters and just everything about it. If you liked all of the other Sarah Dessen books I reccomend you read this one.
Date published: 2009-06-21
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Didn't Live Up To Expectations Maybe I expected too much but honestly this book did not impress me at all. I am usually a fan of Sarah Dessen but this book completely missed the mark in my opinion. It was lacking depth and the characters were completely underdeveloped. I was not at all drawn into this book and it took quite a bit of determinations and dedication to finish the book. If your a Dessen fan I would recommend you read this book but if its going to be your first Dessen novel I would say pick something else.
Date published: 2009-06-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Sarah Dessen does it again! I have been a fan of Sarah Dessen since I first read "This Lullaby". There is a certain magic in the way she writes, capturing characters in such a way they come to life. Auden's story is no different. In "Along for the Ride", Dessen once again creates a world that the reader is instantly transported to, vivid and complex. This is not just another story about boy meets girl but a stunning story of what it means to get a second chance you didn't even know you needed.
Date published: 2009-06-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from so excited!! cant wait for along for the ride!! ive read all of sarah's books and they are FANTASTIC!! i just hate it that all her books come out in hardcover first, its so annoying to pay like 10 extra bucks just because it's not paperback.. but i am soo going to!
Date published: 2009-06-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Even Better Than Her Last (if that's possible) Auden is more than just your typical super-keen overachiever with divorced parents; a snobby literay prof mom and a self-absorbed father. She has never really had fun, had a chance to be a kid and has never really been close to anyone her own age. Instead, she's strived hard to succeed the academic way, the only way that really gets her parents' attention and approval. She's gotten into a great university, that she will attend come Fall and Auden is ready for a change of scene. So for her summer vacation, Auden decides to go visit her father with his new wife, Heidi and their recently born daughter, Thisbe in Colby. And that's what she does, along with a suitcase stuffed with textbooks for her to study over the summer. Summer with in Colby is definitely not what Auden expected. Auden's father spends all of his time working on his novel, leaving an overwhelmed Heidi to take care of her crying newborn by herself. And when she first gets to Colby, Auden stupidly hooks up with a guy that turns out to be the recent ex of a girl who works at her stepmother's store. And then Auden finds herself working in Heidi's super-pink clothing store, a place that Auden's pretentious mom would scoff at. Auden follows her mother's (would-be) example, secluding herself in the backroom, completing her job alone. But Auden's reclusive ways won't last forever. Her insomnia, dating from the time when her parents divorced, forces her to stay awake, roaming the town where she eventually bumps into Eli, a local guy who she keeps on stumbling upon. Eventually, the two form a companionship, roaming in the night together. It leads to a quest where Eli and Auden try to make up for everything that Auden missed as a child. From breaking curfew to a food fight, Eli helps Auden have a second chance at childhood. As the two grow closer, Eli's history is revealed as well and the two connect, helping each other heal from the past. Along with her nighttime adventures with Eli, Auden slowly begins to get to know the girls who work at Heidi's store, as she learns not to judge people simply by their appearences. None of the girls turn out to be who Auden thought they were and they befriend Auden, and teach her what friendship really is. In Sarah Dessen's latest novel, Along for the Ride, we are introduced to yet another set of characters with yet another touching story that truly will touch almost everyone who reads it. Sarah Dessen truly has the magic touch, at least when it comes to story telling and characterization. Auden's character is well portrayed, and, at least for me, is pretty easy to relate to. I often feel socially awkward and I also go to a pretty rigorous high school and it's so different from other high schools with an assortment of people. The difference often helps give the other students and I the impression that the unsubstantial appearence of some people means an empty interior where no coherent thoughts lie. Which is wrong, of course. The same judgement even happens inside the school with the more academically-geared ones judging the rest with the same scorn that Auden's mother judged Heidi. Everyone in the novel was integral; with their own important stories. Heidi turns out to be much more than Auden had expected her to be, Thisbe is more than just a newborn, Auden's childish older brother (Hollis)may have the potential to grow up and even Auden's parents may have more to them than Auden can see. Honestly, it's amazing watching and reading about Auden's transformation. It affects her, her family and even her newfound friends in ways they couldn't imagine. I especially love the connection between Eli and Auden and how, together, they are able to face the past and look to the future. Besides the reliving childhood aspect of the novel, there is so much more going on, allowing almost everyone to relate. The family issues, death, growing up and really, just living, are what makes Along for the Ride the terrific story that it is. Sarah Dessen's writing is impressive, I swear, every new release of hers comes with a huge leap in quality. Which is amazing considering that even from the beginning, she was terrific. Now she's astounding. I never thought she'd be able to top Just Listen, which had been my favorite out of all her books, but Along for the Ride did. To be truthful, it didn't the first time I read it (I'm a huge rereader...I don't even want to count the number of times I reread Just Listen) but by the third reread, it has officially become my favorite Sarah Dessen book and definitely one of my favorite books of the year. So yes, makes sure you pick this book up when it comes out on June 16. If you don't, you're missing out. Big time.
Date published: 2009-05-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Can't wait!! I can't wait to finally read another one of Sarah Dessen's books!
Date published: 2008-12-25

From the Author

"I was born in 1970 in Illinois, but all the life I remember I’ve spent in Chapel Hill, NC. My parents were both professors at the University of North Carolina: my mom is a classicist (which means she knows everything you could ever imagine about myths, Latin, and words) and my dad teaches Shakespeare (which means I’d seen As You Like It about five times by the age of 18.) I have one brother, who is a musician and lives in California with his son and his wife, an artist who designed my personal website. (Thanks, Mariangeles!) "I’ve been writing, in one way or another, for as long as I can remember. I was always a big reader, mostly because my parents were. I used to get frustrated with my mom because she bought me books for Christmas when what I really wanted were the gifts my friends got, things like sweaters and jewelry. But I did love to read. When I was eight or nine my parents gave me an old manual typewriter and a little desk in the corner of our den, and I’d sit there and type up my stories. I was the kind of kid that people always sighed over and said, "She has such a wild imagination," which usually meant "I wish Sarah would try to stick to the truth." I have a tendency to embellish: I think it’s just a weakness of fiction writers. Once you learn how to make a story better, it’s hard not to do it all the time. "In high school, I was lucky enough to have a big group of girlfriends that have really inspired a lot of the stories in my books. I’m still close with my friends from that time, so it’s never very hard to put myself back into that place, that voice. Also it doesn’t hurt to still be living in my hometown, where it’s a given that I’ll bump into people I had homeroom with, or guys I had big crushes on, while I’m pumping gas or buying stamps. It makes it hard to leave high school behind entirely, which is a good or bad thing depending on what day you ask me. I attended college at UNC, where I studied creative writing and graduated with a degree in English. (Which means I can quote small parts of many Great Works. Comes in handy occasionally, like at cocktail parties.) I’d been on the five-and-a-half year college plan, and when I graduated my parents were hoping I’d settle down and get a Real Job so they could stop worrying about me. But instead of doing the whole resume/pantyhose thing, I decided to stick to my job waiting tables at the world famous Flying Burrito Restaurant and try to publish a novel. At the time, I had only one very bad book I’d written my senior year of college and the beginnings of another one. Luckily, my family was supportive and I spent a few years living in a ramshackle little house where I wrote during the day and did the restaurant thing at night. "Three years after graduating, I sold my first book, That Summer, but it wasn’t until a year after that that I got offered a teaching job and left waitressing for good. I still miss it sometimes, though. It was a great job for a writer. Endless conversations to eavesdrop, tons of material, and fast money without ever taking work home. Plus, free Mexican food, the best perk of all. Now, I’ve published four books, all for young adults. I never really intended to be YA writer, but the second book I showed my agent she thought had a strong teenage voice, so she sent it off to an editor at Orchard Books, who bought it. Even though it was in a way accidental, I’ve found that writing for teens suits me. I do short stories, and other novels, that are for an older audience, but again and again I am brought back to the stories of high school. Maybe it’s because so much happened to me then that I’m not finished yet telling everything. My senior quote was from Pink Floyd (okay, I was a bit of a burnout---I spent a lot of time in the parking lot, whatever, let’s move on) and it pretty much summed up my future, although I didn’t know it at the time. It was: "The time is gone, the song is over, thought I’d something more to say." It turns out that I did. "The books I read when I was teenager, the good ones anyway, have stuck more in my mind than anything since. I still love books, but while I couldn’t tell you complete plots of novels I read even six months ago, I do remember even the smallest descriptive details from Lois Lowry’s A Summer to Die or Judy Blume’s Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. I think it was because back then books were still somewhat new to me, and when I found an author who seemed to say just what I was feeling, it really struck me and resonated. I hope that my books do that for the people who read them: I think it’s the best thing to which any writer can aspire. Now, I teach writing at UNC-Chapel Hill, where I’m lucky enough to see my students find their own voice, the way I did in the same program there not so long ago. Teaching is great for me, because I get to show people how writing can really change the way you see not only yourself but the world. I’ve found in my own life that if my writing isn’t going well, not much else will. It is the one constant, the key to everything else. "As far as my other life, my non-writing life, I live in the country with my husband, some lizards, and two dogs who are completely spoiled and rule me completely. I like to work in my garden---although I have not yet perfected the art of keeping everything alive----and, in my weaker moments, shop. I have a bit of an addiction to the Gap clearance rack, to be honest. I have this strange need to buy huge quantities of black pants. How many pairs of black pants does one person need? (Obviously for me, the answer is 11 and counting. But I digress.) What else can I tell you? I love Starbucks mochas but they make me way hyper. I subscribe to too many magazines. I make a mean bean salad. I could go on, but the truth is, my books are much more exciting than I am, and that’s a good thing. It’s always more fun to make stuff up anyway."

Editorial Reviews

"Beautifully captures that sense of summer as a golden threshold between past regrets and future unknowns." -The Washington Post