A very bumpy ride. Emily Curtis is used to dealing with her problems while under the hood of an old Chevy, but when her mom dies, Emily's world seems shaken beyond repair. Driven from home by hospital bills they can't pay, Emily and her dad move in with his wealthy sister, who intends to make her niece more feminine -- in other words, just like Whitney, Emily's perfect cousin. But when Emily hears the engine of a 1970 Dodge Challenger, and sees the cute gearhead, Zander, next door, things seem to be looking up. But even working alongside Zander can't completely fix the hole in Emily's life. Ever since her mom died, Emily hasn't been able to pray, and no one -- not even Zander -- seems to understand. But sometimes the help you need can come from the person you least expect.
I thought the characters in this book were spot on. Emily is a young girl struggling to become a woman while still dealing with the death of her mother. Add a move on top of that and it could be disastrous, but she handles it fairly well. Emily knows what she wants and she isn't ashamed to be who she is, even if that means getting dirty looks from other girls because she isn't "girlie" enough. Reading through Emily's struggle with her own faith helped me to strengthen mine (and I'm an adult!). Zander is the teenage boy I would want my daughter to marry someday if I had one. He is smart, funny, kind, giving and his faith is strong. It is so rare to find a male YA character with a strong faith, how refreshing!
I loved every aspect of this book. I enjoyed reading it and look forward to reading more of Mrs. Clipston's work in the future. I cannot recommend this book enough! I am pleased that there is a book out there like this that young adults can read and relate to. Great job Amy Clipston! 5/5 stars!