Sunday, January 6, 2013

Kiss the Morning Star, by Elissa Janine Hoole

Still dealing with her mother's tragic death, Anna sets off on a road trip with her best friend, Kat.  The girls follow their wanderlust, under the guidance of a book by Jack Kerouac, searching for life and proof of God's love.  Along the way, Anna confronts her fears, her emotions, her relationship with her father, and her entire concept of love.

This is your typical road trip story, only involving teen girls.  I am not sure many parents would allow their teenagers to take a road trip like this, but given that Anna's father is mired in mourning, I am willing to suspend disbelief on that detail.  In general, I found the characters of Anna and Kat to be a little flat and boring.  I never really felt like we learned much about them, nor do I feel like their characters were really pushed to confront themselves, or each other.  The questions and situations the girls encounter are pretty standard; religion, sexuality, drug use, love. And I felt in terms of those issues, this book really did not bring anything new to the table.

One thing I did actually like about this story was the exploration of love, romance, and sexuality in a way that was not limited to gender or conventional labels.  In a world where we are so quick to pigeonhole someone as gay, straight, or bisexual, it was refreshing to see a young adult book that indicates those labels do not matter quite so much, and love matters so much more.

I think a lot of young adults will like this book, and it will certainly appeal to readers with wanderlust of their own.  If you like road trip stories, this is a great book for you, I personally just found it a little boring.

I received a review copy courtesy of the Amazon Vine program, in exchange for my honest review.

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