By Hannah Harrington
Harlequin, $9.99, 336 pages
A road trip contemporary, this book deals with the loss of a loved one by following the journey of a mourning sister. When Harper’s older sister June takes her life, Harper is left wondering why. Harper decides that the only way to properly say goodbye is to take June’s ashes to California. To get there, Harper takes a road trip with her best friend Laney and a boy who is connected to June. Jake, Laney and Harper begin an epic trip across the country, where the reader gets many opportunities to learn more about each deep character between the stops and the music they listen to.
Harrington’s debut novel ties together emotion and realistic relationships with excellent writing and plot progression. Each character connects to one another in such an honest way that the evolution feels entirely heartfelt and authentic. Harper’s connection with Jake, in particular, feels right and unforced, especially because he is a bridge between Harper and her sister that she never knew existed until she made the decision to travel across the country. A musical journey, Saving June is an excellent addition to the contemporary YA genre.
Reviewed by Shanyn Day