“Emotional and sexy…I loved it!” —Miranda Kenneally, bestselling author of Catching Jordan
“Dessa is a winning and resilient heroine.” —Elizabeth Wein, New York Times bestselling author of Code Name Verity
“A journey I would happily take over and over again.” —Dahlia Adler, author of Just Visiting
“The fantastic, feminist novel I wish I’d had as a teen.” —Jessica Spotswood, author of the Cahill Witch Chronicles
“A heartfelt—and at times, heartbreaking—exploration of finding yourself.” —Stacey Kade, author of Finding Felicity
“An emotional, aesthetic, and hopeful journey to self-discovery.” —Kirkus Reviews
“[T]he message of maintaining persistence, courage, and creativity is a worthy and welcome one for teen readers.” —Booklist
Seventeen-year-old Dessa Rhodes is torn between leaving her modern nomadic life and pursuing her dreams of becoming an artist in this fun, contemporary debut novel that’s “perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Morgan Matson” (Ashley Poston, author of Geekarella).
Dessa Rhodes is a modern day nomad. Her family travels in an RV, their lives defined by state lines, exit signs, and the small communal caravan they call home. Among them is Cyrus, her best friend and long-time crush, whom she knows she can never be with. When your families are perpetually linked, it’s too dangerous to take a risk on romance.
Instead, Dessa looks to the future. She wants to be a real artist and going to art school is her ticket to success and a new life. There’s just one problem: she hasn’t been accepted…anywhere. Suddenly her future is wide open, and it looks like she’s going to be stuck traveling forever.
Then an unexpected opportunity presents itself: an internship working with a local artist in Santa Fe. Dessa struggles to prove to her boss—and herself—that she belongs there, but just as she finally hits her stride, her family suffers an unexpected blow. Faced with losing everything that she has worked for, Dessa has a difficult decision to make. Will she say goodbye to her nomadic lifestyle and the boy she loves? Or will she choose to never stop moving?
Dessa's family, whose favorite motto is "never stop moving," has been traveling in an RV caravan for years, but now Dessa, 17, is ready to put down roots. Her plan is to get her GED and attend art school, but she hasn't gotten accepted anywhere. After she gets the chance to intern for a famous artist, though, the caravan families begrudgingly agree on a temporary stay in Santa Fe so that she can take advantage of the opportunity. Dessa is thrilled to work for a real artist, but conflicts soon arise: she becomes discouraged, doubting her talent; the family goes through a financial crisis; and her relationship with traveling partner Cy takes a romantic turn, making her wonder if her original plan to leave the group is the right decision after all. In a thoughtful novel depicting the downside of nomadic life, debut author Spieller renders a convincing portrait of a blossoming artist facing relatable coming-of-age issues. Some of the resolutions arrive in too-neat packages, but Dessa's struggle to realize her dreams without hurting loved ones will resonate. Ages 14 up.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I loved the book. With the life changing decisions, the swoon worthy romance, and all the drama. I have read this book 5 times. It is that good.