Tonight the Streets Are Ours by Leila Sales
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Seventeen-year-old Arden Huntley is recklessly loyal. Taking care of her loved ones is what gives Arden purpose in her life and makes her feel like she matters. But she's tired of being loyal to people who don't appreciate her—including her needy best friend and her absent mom.
Arden finds comfort in a blog she stumbles upon called "Tonight the Streets Are Ours," the musings of a young New York City writer named Peter. When Peter is dumped by the girlfriend he blogs about, Arden decides to take a road trip to see him.
During one crazy night out in NYC filled with parties, dancing, and music—the type of night when anything can happen, and nearly everything does—Arden discovers that Peter isn't exactly who she thought he was. And maybe she isn't exactly who she thought she was, either.
This was a really fast read for me. The main character is instantly relatable in her desire to keep her best friend safe and in the betrayal she's feeling from her mother's actions. The first half of the book is a little slower than the second, mostly because it's building the relationships between the characters and laying out Arden's reasons for making a very un-Ardenlike decision to drive six hours to find a blogger. The second half of the book moves much more quickly, as Arden meets Peter--the blogger she feels drawn toward after searching the internet for the phrase "Why doesn't anyone love me as much as I love them?" The subsequent fight with her best friend, the crazy New York night, Arden's growing attraction to Peter, and how she begins to piece together the "facts" of Peter's life made it impossible for me to put the book down during the second half. I found the tense change partway through the book to be a bit jarring, but otherwise I loved the writing style. The little details and the character development are what really make this book good. I wanted maybe a little more from the disillusionment Arden experiences with Peter, but all-in-all, this was a very satisfying read. This book releases on September 15th, and is definitely worth checking out if you like character-driven contemporary YA.
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