Acclaimed writer Margo Rabb’s Kissing in America is “a wonderful novel about friendship, love, travel, life, hope, poetry, intelligence, and the inner lives of girls,” raves internationally bestselling author Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love).
In the two years since her father died, sixteen-year-old Eva has found comfort in reading romance novels—118 of them, to be exact—to dull the pain of her loss that’s still so present. Her romantic fantasies become a reality when she meets Will, who can relate to Eva’s grief. Unfortunately, after Eva falls head-over-heels for him, he picks up and moves to California with barely any warning. Not wanting to lose the only person who has been able to pull her out of sadness—and, perhaps, her first shot at real love—Eva and her best friend, Annie, concoct a plan to travel to the west coast. As they road trip across America, Eva and Annie confront the complex truth about love.
In this honest and emotional journey that National Book Award Finalist Sara Zarr calls “gorgeous, funny, and joyous,” readers will experience the highs of infatuation and the lows of heartache as Eva contends with love in all of its forms.
Since publication, this novel received 4 starred reviews and has been named:
A Chicago Public Library Best Teen Book of 2015A New York Public Library Best Book for Teens 2015A Miami Herald Best Book of the YearA Spirit of Texas selectionA TAYSHAS High School Reading List SelectionAn Oprah Summer Reading List selectionA Junior Library Guild selectionAn Amazon Best Book of the MonthA Publisher’s Lunch 2015 Buzz Book for Young Adults
In this indelible coming-of-age story, Rabb (Cures for Heartbreak) seamlessly weaves together multiple narratives: families coping with death, immigrants determined to make it in America, the power of education to transform lives, reality TV offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, first love, first heartbreak, and the conflicted, ardent passion of a mother/daughter relationship. After Eva's father dies in a plane crash, she lives with an awareness that "the very worst thing you imagine, your biggest fear, does happen," a fear she mitigates by avidly reading romance fiction. Eva's mother, a women's studies professor, disparages the books, but for 16-year-old Eva, "those feelings felt as real and true as any other feelings I'd ever felt. As real and true as grief." A cross-country bus trip expands Eva's world as she and her best friend Annie encounter people who "never met a Jewish person before" and discover that "real-life cowboys were better than fictional ones." Sprinkled with the poetry Eva reads and writes, this story makes for a hilarious, thought-provoking, wrenching, and joyful quest. Ages 14 up.
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I hate it not even scary