Release Date: March 13, 2012
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
It all begins with a stupid question:
Are you a Global Vagabond?
No, but 18-year-old Bria Sandoval wants to be. In a quest for independence, her neglected art, and no-strings-attached hookups, she signs up for a guided tour of Central America—the wrong one. Middle-aged tourists with fanny packs are hardly the key to self-rediscovery. When Bria meets Rowan, devoted backpacker and dive instructor, and his outspokenly humanitarian sister Starling, she seizes the chance to ditch her group and join them off the beaten path.
Bria's a good girl trying to go bad. Rowan's a bad boy trying to stay good. As they travel across a panorama of Mayan villages, remote Belizean islands, and hostels plagued with jungle beasties, they discover what they've got in common: both seek to leave behind the old versions of themselves. And the secret to escaping the past, Rowan’s found, is to keep moving forward.
But Bria comes to realize she can't run forever, no matter what Rowan says. If she ever wants the courage to fall for someone worthwhile, she has to start looking back.
Kirsten Hubbard lends her artistry into this ultimate backpacker novel, weaving her drawings into the text. Her career as a travel writer and her experiences as a real-life vagabond backpacking Central America are deeply seeded in this inspiring story. (Summary from Goodreads)
This book may be the definitive proof that the journey is more important than the destination.
WANDERLOVE is a beautifully written story about a girl who is not only recovering from heartbreak, but also trying to learn who she is when she has no one to attach her own identity to. It’s a story that will make you cry if you’ve ever lost you own sense of self in a relationship (romantic or otherwise). You’ll see yourself in Bria as she tries to remain true to her journey of self discovery while feeling the pangs of love too soon after her devastating breakup. This story hit so close to home for me that I had to read it in smaller doses than I wanted to. It was an emotionally stirring read.
You’ll be hoping you have enough dollars saved up in your budget to do some exotic traveling after picking this up. It is obvious that the locations mentioned throughout the story are ones that are close to Kirsten Hubbard’s heart. All of your senses will be tricked into believing you’ve been transported to Central America with nothing more than what can fit in a second hand backpack.
Not only are readers treated to a delicious story in WANDERLOVE, we get the added benefit of seeing Kirsten Hubbard’s own art dispersed throughout the pages. I really enjoyed the extra insight they offered to the scenes they’re attached to.
Thank you, Kirsten, for sharing a story that will stick with me for a long time. Here's a little something to show you just how thankful I am:
Awwwwww... Look how cute this little guy is! Don't you just want to get a sloth of your own?