Picture drawn by Maggie Stiefvater, 2009. Header made by S.F. Robertson, 2010.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Don't Stop Now by Julie Halpern

Don't Stop Now by Julie Halpern
"On the first day of Lillian’s summer-before-college, she gets a message on her cell from her sort-of friend, Penny. Not only has Penny faked her own kidnapping, but Lil is the only one who figures it out. She knows that Penny’s home life has been rough, and that her boyfriend may be abusive. Soon, Penny’s family, the local police, and even the FBI are grilling Lil, and she decides to head out to Oregon, where Penny has mentioned an acquaintance. And who better to road-trip across the country with than Lil’s BFF, Josh. But here’s the thing: Lil loves Josh. And Josh doesn’t want to “ruin” their amazing friendship.

Josh has a car and his dad’s credit card. Lil has her cellphone and a hunch about where Penny is hiding. There’s something else she needs to find: Are she and Josh meant to be together?"- summary from Amazon

It is no secret that I love Julie Halpern's books. Since her debut, Get Well Soon, I've been a fan and always eagerly anticipating the next book. Her books are funny, thoughtful, and really do a great job of capturing teens' lives today and usually in a less-than-normal setting. Get Well Soon takes place in a mental hospital, Into the Wild Nerd Yonder does take place in a high school but there is the inclusion of a real-life D&D convention much like a Renaissance fair, and with Don't Stop Now, Halpern's given us a road trip across most of the US.

I'm not sure if the places Lil and Josh visit are real but it'd be really fun if they were. I loved reading about the road trip they took and with there basically just being two characters for the vast majority of the novel, there's a lot of character development going on. Seeing them navigate the waters of friends vs. more rang true and Halpern handled it really well.

Aside from Lil and Josh's exploits, at the end of every chapter (except a couple), there's an excerpt taking place from the perspective of Penny, and even though they're short excerpts, I really get a sense of her character and why she did what she did.

Overall, this is an amazing book and I urge everyone to go grab a copy at their bookstore today (the book's release day!), along with Halpern's previous books. You won't regret it (unless of course you only like urban fantasy and paranormal, in which case, you will regret it).

FTC: Received ARC from publisher. Link above is an Amazon Associate link; any profit goes toward funding contests.


  1. I'm really excited to check out her other books - loved this one! And yes, those places are real!!! I probably won't ever get to most of them, except Powell's of course.

  2. I can't wait till I can get my paws on this book!!
    I loved Into the Wild Nerd Yonder and I just got Get Well Soon.

    I do think she's an amazing author!

    Thanks for the review.

  3. Julie Halpern's personal photos from places that Josh and Lil visit in Don't Stop Now: http://www.flickr.com/photos/juliehalpern/sets/72157626498422826/