Kissing in America by: Margo Rabb
Genre: Contemporary/ YA
Rating: 4/5 stars
Writing Style: first person
What I can say about Kissing in America is that it is more than what the title entails. I believe as readers, are attraction to a book is based off three necessary elements. Cover art, enticing title, and a story worth reading. I have to admit the first time I picked up this book was in the middle of August, I was craving a light read, a fluff read if you may. Something that would lift me from the slump of the constant reminder than school was right around the corner. A story about a road trip, true friendships, first loves and family? Sign me up. It took me a while to get back into the groove of Eva’s story but in the end, it was worth much more to me than just a fluff read.
Kissing in America, a tale of a sixteen-year-old Eva who finds comfort in reading romance novels, and we’re not talking light new adult reads here. This seems to fill the void of her recently deceased father who throughout this story has a large role in Eva’s adventures. We follow Eva’s cross country bound story that takes her beyond finding her true love, Will in the heart of California, but in a search to find herself and the truest form of love. I believe a story has a chance to make up for its flaws, and I really went into this book wanting a good story. I left with a good ache in my chest, the kind that reminds me that a good story can be found in the most unlikely of places.
Margo Rabb has a way of capturing you into a story, whether it be her poetic way of writing or the instant connection she forms with you through her characters. I found throughout this book that I carried a sense of wanting more, and though this happened more so in the beginning half of this novel I found myself not wanting to put it down once I picked it back up. I enjoyed both Rabb’s writing style, the flawed characters, and the immense boundaries overturned that make Eva’s spontaneous voyage worth remembering. Some of my dislikes with this story were the slow pace in the beginning portion, it took nearly 200 pages before we find ourselves on the road. Now I do believe in building a world, but with a contemporary such as this? There isn’t much to build from, especially with an insta- love situation. [SPOILER] Will’s character was not someone I was fond of throughout this book, he had his flaws and he owned up to them but in the end I wasn’t too sad with the outcome. Eva was immature, stubborn, naïve and very annoying at times but that’s what makes her great. A character that isn’t perfect is something I strive for in a novel, I have no patience for a Mary Sue.
Now, without spoiling the plot I would like to mention two points. One, if you have a strong interest in family histories, geographic quests, real friendships and quirky dialogue? You will fall for this book. Secondly, if you’re looking for a romance and you happen to pick up this beauty remember, love is not love but the purest kind.