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March 10, 2012

Review: Wanderlove by Kristen Hubbard - Juhina

Title: Wanderlove
Author: Kristen Hubbard 
Publication date: March 13th, 2012
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Genre(s): Young Adult (Contemporary)
Challenges: YA Contemporary, SARC, A-Z Title
Source: NetGalley
Format: Digital ARC
Pages: 352

It all begins with a stupid question:

Are you a Global Vagabond?

No, but 18-year-old Bria Sandoval wants to be. In a quest for independence, her neglected art, and no-strings-attached hookups, she signs up for a guided tour of Central America—the wrong one. Middle-aged tourists with fanny packs are hardly the key to self-rediscovery. When Bria meets Rowan, devoted backpacker and dive instructor, and his outspokenly humanitarian sister Starling, she seizes the chance to ditch her group and join them off the beaten path.

Bria's a good girl trying to go bad. Rowan's a bad boy trying to stay good. As they travel across a panorama of Mayan villages, remote Belizean islands, and hostels plagued with jungle beasties, they discover what they've got in common: both seek to leave behind the old versions of themselves. And the secret to escaping the past, Rowan’s found, is to keep moving forward.

But Bria comes to realize she can't run forever, no matter what Rowan says. If she ever wants the courage to fall for someone worthwhile, she has to start looking back. 

Wanderlove has definitely brought back the itch for traveling for me. I LOVE to travel. I take pride in exploring other cultures, living like their people, and seeing all the places tourist groups neglect. I've been to some East Asian countries such as Malaysia and South Korea, and let me tell you, without an open mind and living the moment, some of my memorable experiences wouldn't have happened. 
wanderloveThis is why I loved Bria! She had an adventurous soul, it just took her a while to figure it out. Going to Guatemala on your own, for your first overseas trip? that takes some courage! I saw the country through her eyes. The local markets, the people, their food (especially that!) and the exhilarating feeling of exploring and experiencing things you wouldn't have had the chance to find and do if you hadn't traveled there. Kristen Hubbard is a fantastic storyteller! I loved how she mixed up normal narration with journal entries, and drawings by Bria. I felt like I was touring with Lucy, seeing things through her eyes, the drawings were definitely a plus for me, they gave the book more life and gave us insight into what was on Lucy's mind and what affected her emotionally.
Because of some situation, Bria ended up backpacking (apparently the 'real' way to traveling) with Rowan. Their time together was just fun to read. The sarcasm, the bickering, the slow friendship between them was all enjoyable. Of course we all know what will eventually happen between them, but the build up was overall entertaining. I haven't read Kristen's debut novel "Like Mandarin" but her love for traveling, creativity, and likable writing made me add her novel to my priority reading pile! I would highly recommend Wanderlove to any travel enthusiast and obviously any contemporary lover!

Five musical notes!


  1. Ooo - sounds good. I love to travel as well... it makes your life so much richer. Thanks for the review. I'll add it to my reading list :)

    1. yeay! you should! its really good :D I love traveling and i REALLY enjoyed it

      - juhina

  2. I love a good bit of banter between characters. ;) This sounds so good and I'm glad you enjoyed it! Everyone seems to love this book. I will admit, the description sounds a little boring to me, but I now really want to give it a go after all the gushing reviews I have read. :)

    1. oh yes! you really should!! I have started to never judge a book by their synopsis either! sometimes the synopsis is just oh so amazing and the book falls flat to me, other times its the opposite!! This was a really good book :D
      - juhina

  3. I'm the same as you - I love to travel! I wish I had more time (and money) to travel more :( And you made me want to read this book even more, now. :D I'll have to pick this up when I'm done with my review books!!!

    Books, Biscuits, and Tea

  4. omg! I just preordered this as soon as I read your review. It sounds like a good book to get me into a summery mood!

    Taylor @ Tays Book Corner

  5. I love to travel too. This sounds like a great book. i have seen it around all over the place but I have not actually read a review of it until yours. It looks really good. Thanks for the great review :)

  6. I love those drawings. AND it sounds like a great book, or so you make i sound ;))
    I need to find some time to read it too :D

  7. One of my favorite books ever!