Review Detail

Run Featured
Young Adult Fiction 1243
the character-driven YA novel you want on your shelf
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
What I Loved:
Kelpinger tells Agnes and Bo’s story through both their points of view, but Agnes’s sections are about the past and Bo’s the present. The alternating narratives of the beginning of their friendship and where their friendship ultimately takes them offers a clear “before” and “after” for their character arcs and certainly tempted me to read all of Agnes’s chapters for the sake of chronological order. But no, I read it “right.” It also creates the sweet feeling of things ending where they began–and I don’t spoil a thing by saying that. The choice to do so just makes how much the girls have changed that much clearer.

Road trip novels often work best through their emphasis on friendship and dynamic characters, but Run hits it out of the park and then some on both counts. Bo and Agnes don’t have an ideal friendship in the past or present, but it works for them. When Agnes’s lie-back-and-take-it attitude clashes with Bo’s don’t-take-any-bull life philosophy, it results in some… fun situations. Y’know, like assaulting someone at a street fair when they’ve already been reported as missing.

Thanks to the alternating timelines, we get to see the girls–particularly Agnes, who is definitely the stronger of the two protagonists–go through multiple character arcs. Her experience trying to find independence as a legally blind girl isn’t something I as a sighted (albeit nearsighted) person will ever understand, but her general desire to escape from under her strict parents’ thumbs will surely resonate with many readers.

What really makes Run a winner is how familiar yet extraordinary it is. I’ve read plenty of road trip YA novels and Run resembles all of them in the same way any one will resemble another, but this one pulls at my heart in a way other road trip YA novels didn’t. A road trip novel certainly hasn’t made me cry the way this one did! It nails the setting too; small touches like the way the characters refer to their parents as “Mama” and “Daddy” remind me this is the Deep South and contribute to Bo’s decision to remain in the closet to most people. Little ways setting influences characters and all!

What Left Me Wanting:
The only criticism I have is that Bo and Agnes’s voices blend together at times, making it a bit difficult to remember who is narrating at times. This can be a killer for a dual POV novel, but Keplinger does so many other things well that it seems inconsequential for once. You just remind yourself whose chapter it is and keep reading.

Final Verdict:
This book is not the dream road trip with your best friend. This is the reality of that road trip, which includes the way you and your best friend nearly murdered one another–and yet you two still look back on the trip fondly like the near-murdering never happened.

From the #ownvoices representation of Agnes’s legal blindness to the impossible-to-detail struggles Bo deals with, this is the character-driven YA novel you want on your shelf sooner than yesterday. I can’t recommend Run enough!
Good Points
*well-used dual POV structure
*incredible character arcs that pull at your heartstrings
*#ownvoices representation
*small touches make the setting vividly real
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Mr Penguin and the Fortress of Secrets (Mr Penguin #2)
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Meet Mr. Penguin―Adventurer (And Penguin!) When Mr. Penguin...
Sword and Pen (Great Library Book, #5)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
With the future of the Great Library in doubt,...
Butterfly Yellow
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
Perfect for fans of Elizabeth Acevedo, Ibi Zoboi, and...
Jonny Lambert's Construction Site
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A beautifully illustrated book for babies featuring lots of noisy...
Pop-Up Peekaboo! Baby Animals
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Take your toddler on a rain forest adventure and find...
Seven Deadly Shadows
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Seventeen-year-old Kira Fujikawa has never had it easy. She’s...
Pet
Pet
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
The highly-anticipated, genre-defying new novel by award-winning author Akwaeke...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Immerse yourself in a strange and beautiful world as you...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The inspiring, deeply patriotic true story of John Glenn, a...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A wildly imaginative introduction to yoga and nutrition by bestselling...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A book jam-packed with eight creative activities to make beautiful...
The Shadows Between Us
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Tricia Levenseller, author of Daughter of the Pirate King, is...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
It had been a great day. Perhaps the Best Day…...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Far away from the modern world, on a small tropical...
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)
It's been three months since Casey McClair fought and survived...
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
She’s captured the king’s heart. But who’s captured hers? #1...

Latest Member Reviews

Mr Penguin and the Fortress of Secrets (Mr Penguin #2)
 
4.5
"Mr. Penguins and his friends Colin the spider and Edith are trying to keep a rock safe from dastardly types..."
Jonny Lambert's Construction Site
 
5.0
"JONNY LAMBERT'S CONSTRUCTION SITE tells the story of how a house is made, with a focus on the many trucks..."
Pop-Up Peekaboo! Baby Animals
 
5.0
"POP-UP PEEKABOO! BABY ANIMALS is a charming lift-the-flap and pop-up picture book. Each spread features a parent animal who is..."
Roman and the Hopeless Romantic (Gulf City High)
 
5.0
"Best friends….secret love….y’all Michelle MacQueen put my two favorite tropes into one incredibly sweet story. Roman and the Hopeless Romantic..."
Adeline's Aria
 
4.0
" The Story: Addie has an obsession with British rocker Jude, but it's just a fan..."
 
5.0
" This book doesn't meet the expectations of most kid's books about the ocean with their bright and..."
 
5.0
" John Glenn is unlike any other public figure before or after him. His story isn't simply a..."
 
5.0
"The first time my niece saw me do a yoga video, she was obsessed. She's five years old and it..."
 
5.0
"We all know crafting stuff can be expensive and when it comes to kid's crafts, it creates more waste than..."
The Slug Queen Chronicles
 
5.0
"When Cricket finds out that the dust she's seen her whole life has magical properties and her late mother could..."
Seven Deadly Shadows
 
4.0
"Sixteen-year-old Kira Fujikawa loves helping at her family shrine. She also has a paranormal ability. She sees the not only..."
The Shadows Between Us
 
5.0
"THE SHADOWS BETWEEN US is the highly devourable YA fantasy I have been searching for! This is an enthralling story..."
 
5.0
"Another chilling story from L.V. Pires. This one started out with the main character from Book 1, Casey, fighting an..."
Ghosting You
 
4.8
"Reviewed for YA Books Central A heartwarming love story. The Story: Tommy..."
A Pain Less Ordinary
 
5.0
"A Pain Less Ordinary is a tragic tale of a modern girl whose family has fallen apart. Becca struggles to..."
The Waiting Mortuary
 
5.0
"I'm not normally one to read horror fiction, but I thought I'd give this book a chance and was blown..."
 
3.3
"The Betrothed is a brand new YA-novel set in the 15th century by Kiera Cass, whom we all know from..."
Roman and the Hopeless Romantic (Gulf City High)
 
5.0
"After Cassie witnesses the murder of her mother, she develops anxiety over just about everything. She doesn't talk to anyone..."
Seneca Lake
 
4.8
"Meg lives in a small town in upstate NY (outside Ithaca) in the later years of WWII. She is torn..."
Remember Me
 
4.0
"‘First rule of storytelling,’ he says, a glint in his eyes.’ Everything is possible.’ Nell is..."