Review: Joyride by Anna Banks

Title: Joyride

Author: Anna Banks

Published: 02 June 2015 | Feiwel & Friends

Date Read: 19 March 2017


A popular guy and a shy girl with a secret become unlikely accomplices for midnight pranking, and are soon in over their heads—with the law and with each other—in this sparkling standalone from NYT-bestselling author Anna Banks.

It’s been years since Carly Vega’s parents were deported. She lives with her brother, studies hard, and works at a convenience store to contribute to getting her parents back from Mexico.

Arden Moss used to be the star quarterback at school. He dated popular blondes and had fun with his older sister, Amber. But now Amber’s dead, and Arden blames his father, the town sheriff who wouldn’t acknowledge Amber’s mental illness. Arden refuses to fulfill whatever his conservative father expects.

All Carly wants is to stay under the radar and do what her family expects. All Arden wants is to NOT do what his family expects. When their paths cross, they each realize they’ve been living according to others. Carly and Arden’s journey toward their true hearts—and one another—is funny, romantic, and sometimes harsh.

Joyride started in a very interesting way. It’s another ordinary night on duty at the convenience store for Carly when she witnesses her frequent customer Mr. Shackleford being robbed in front of the store. She went on his rescue and from there started a new path on Carly Vega’s life.

“Heroics brings attention. Attention bring scrutiny. And scrutiny exposes secrets.”

Carly Vega’s family is an immigrant in the USA from Mexico. She goes to school in the morning and works at night and/most of her free time. Working hard is necessary for her and her brother Julio not because of their personal needs but the money they earned will be put into savings to pay for their parents and younger siblings way to come back illegally to the USA across the border.

Carly’s character is an open-book. It’s easy to get to know her and understand her life situations. She’s kept to herself at school seems shy and reserved but she do have a strong personality. What really saddens me a bit about her life is that she’s sixteen years old but have yet to experience childhood/teenhood. Until she met Arden Moss – the sheriff’s son.

Arden Moss is into crazy pranks but not really into school related activities. His character is charming and easy to like. I really appreciate all the help he did for Carly – finding her a job that pays higher and even driving her to/from the workplace. Despite the easy-go-lucky persona he lets the people see, his back story was heartbreaking.

“Everyone deals with things differently, son. But you don’t seem to be dealing with it at all.”

Arden’s sister committed suicide. His sister’s passing left a huge emotional mark on Arden as she – his sister –  was the one who is into the pranks originally. I just felt bad for Arden because it seems like though he has everything materially he’s lacking on fatherly and motherly love.

The dual POV really did great in getting to know both of our main characters Carly and Arden. These two are very much different and it’s pretty interesting how they were able to work out their relationship despite these differences.

The plot of the book is also something new for me. The story flowed smoothly and it didn’t go as to where I was expecting it to go. However, the last 2 chapters feels a bit rushed for me. As much as I wanted to savor the last few pages of Carly and Arden, I have this feeling the it ended abruptly.

Overall, I enjoyed reading it. Will surely look forward to Anna Bank’s next works.

2 thoughts on “Review: Joyride by Anna Banks

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