Roadside Assistance

Friday, October 18, 2013
“I feel like I’m an empty shell of the person I was before you died, Mom, stuck on some road I can’t seem to find my way off. I don’t know how I’ll ever feel whole again. If you can see this, Mom, would you somehow send me a sign? Can you tell me how to feel like myself again? Can you help me get Zander back? More importantly, can you tell me how to reconnect with you and with God? Can you show me how to pray?”

Book: Roadside Assistance by Amy Clipston, Zondervan Publishers, 2013

Genre: Realistic Fiction
Target Audience: Girls 13-19
Subjects: Loss of loved one, family relationships, dating relationships, prayer
Summary: Chevys are the only thing she understands anymore. Or rather, the time spent working on them is the only time she feels like she understands herself. Ever since her mom died, everything else has continued to go wrong. Her dad lost his car repair business, they lost their house, they had to move in with wealthy relatives who clearly look down on her for preferring engine grease to make up, her boyfriend broke up with her and most of all, it seems God has left her too as her cries for help are getting her nowhere. Will life ever be ok again?
Notes: A powerful story of a teen girl struggling to find her identity, Roadside Assistance journeys Whitney’s road to find hope again after her mom dies. After moving in with her relatives she starts to find hope in a relationship with the boy next door but after that relationship ends too, along with it, the only opportunity she has to work on cars, she sinks even further into desperation. An accident that puts her dad in the hospital brings her to breaking point and she finally reconciles with God and realizes that He never left her and was there in all the little details of things that went right. Another issue in the story is her relationship with her cousin. The aunt and grandma are always comparing Whitney to her cousin and Whitney is coming up far short. But throughout the story, she slowly realizes that her cousin is actually defending her to them and offering a friendship. She also struggles with her relationship with dad as he refuses to talk about her mom anymore or listen to what she says her needs are. She comes to realize that he is grieving in a different way than she and accepts that even as he recognizes he needs to acknowledge her needs as well. Overall the story does a good job illustrating the spiritual lessons taught and weaves a powerful story through the midst of it.
Spiritual Content Recommendation Scale: 4/5
Reviewer: J:-)mi

James 1:16-17 – Don't be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.


Jerz Bookish Nerd said...

I love this book. I read it when it first came out. I actually just let my younger cousin borrow it to read this week.
Jesus Freak Reader

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