Review: The Road Trip by Beth O’Leary

Posted June 3, 2021 by Lillian in Reviews / 2 Comments

I received this book via Netgalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Review: The Road Trip by Beth O’LearyThe Road Trip by Beth O'Leary
Published by Berkley on 2021-06-01
Length: 400 pages
Reviewing eARC from Netgalley
Reading Challenges: #NGEW2021, 2021 New Release Challenge, COYER 2021

Two exes reach a new level of awkward when forced to take a road trip together in this endearing and humorous novel by the author of the international bestseller The Flatshare.

What if the end of the road is just the beginning?

Four years ago, Dylan and Addie fell in love under the Provence sun. Wealthy Oxford student Dylan was staying at his friend Cherry's enormous French villa; wild child Addie was spending her summer as the on-site caretaker. Two years ago, their relationship officially ended. They haven't spoken since.

Today, Dylan's and Addie's lives collide again. It's the day before Cherry's wedding, and Addie and Dylan crash cars at the start of the journey there. The car Dylan was driving is wrecked, and the wedding is in rural Scotland--he'll never get there on time by public transport.

So, along with Dylan's best friend, Addie's sister, and a random guy on Facebook who needed a ride, they squeeze into a space-challenged Mini and set off across Britain. Cramped into the same space, Dylan and Addie are forced to confront the choices they made that tore them apart--and ask themselves whether that final decision was the right one after all.

I adore this book! The Road Trip by Beth O'Leary is a comedic and oftentimes heartbreaking story about finding love, losing love, and all the messy bits in between. Imagine, if you will, planning a roadtrip to your best friend’s wedding and everything that could go wrong does. Now you are trapped in a car with your overprotective older sister, a random guy from Facebook, your ex who you want to hate but can’t find the energy to, and his best friend who mutually hates you. Road trip from hell, right? This is the book in a nutshell, but y’all it is so much more! Told in dual POV and alternating past and present, The Road Trip will leave you smiling long after it ends.

Addie and Dylan fell in love one summer while she was working at her friend Cherry’s vacation home as the caretaker. Dylan was there on what was supposed to be a family trip, but as all things with his family, it wound up just being him. The two immediately hit it off, and the chemistry is quite steamy, but both are still immature and learning who they are as adults. Dylan struggles with depression, and I really appreciate how delicately the author handled this. She writes it from his perspective, and it feels true to life. Addie is insecure. Dylan met her at a time in her life where she was carefree and fun.

Flash forward to the present. The two are heading to Cherry’s wedding, in separate cars, and haven’t spoken in a year and a half. When Dylan sees her in the car ahead of him, he loses focus remembering her, how much he loves her and how much he misses her. Then he happens to run his car into the back of hers. To prevent the group from being late to the wedding, they all pile into Addie’s sister’s mini-coop. Can you imagine? Five full grown adults in a mini-coop? I laughed every time it was mentioned. 

The story slowly unravels alternating between Addie and Dylan’s past, watching them fall in love, and their present, crammed into a mini-coop trying not to acknowledge the elephant in the car with them. I loved Addie and Dylan. They are a sweet couple that you can easily root for. Deb, Addie’s sister, is fantastic. She’s a single mom and always has Addie’s back. Marcus, Dylan’s best friend, is an interesting character. I wanted to hate him like Addie does, but I found that he was growing on me. His character arc made me tear up a bit even if I did want to reach through the pages at times and smack him on the head. The last character in the car is Rodney. He is a bit of a mystery. He just needed a ride to the wedding and Deb and Addie thought why not. They don’t know him or how he knows their friend Cherry. So he’s a wildcard, an innocent and harmless one they think.

Overall, if you haven’t already guessed it, I absolutely loved The Road Trip. The bits of the past we got really helped to shape how I interpreted Addie and Dylan in the present. The story and pacing flowed seamlessly from one section to the next. I honestly could have read another 300 pages and been happy. There wasn’t a single character I wasn’t interested in. They were all fully developed and unique. I wanted to get to know them all! If you enjoy sweet, second chance romances with quirky antics and comedic value, I highly recommend you grab a copy.

About Beth O'Leary

Beth O'Leary is a Sunday Times bestselling author whose novels have been translated into more than thirty languages. Her debut, THE FLATSHARE, sold over half a million copies and changed her life completely. Her second novel, THE SWITCH, has been optioned for film by Amblin Partners, Steven Spielberg's production company. Beth writes her books in the Hampshire countryside with a very badly behaved golden retriever for company. If she's not at her desk, you'll usually find her curled up somewhere with a book, a cup of tea and several woolly jumpers (whatever the weather).

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