Review Time: Open Road Summer by Emery Lord


Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
Publication Date: April 15th, 2014
Publisher: Walker Children's
Page count: 342 pages
Summary: After breaking up with her bad-news boyfriend, Reagan O’Neill is ready to leave her rebellious ways behind. . . and her best friend, country superstar Lilah Montgomery, is nursing a broken heart of her own. Fortunately, Lilah’s 24-city tour is about to kick off, offering a perfect opportunity for a girls-only summer of break-up ballads and healing hearts. But when Matt Finch joins the tour as its opening act, his boy-next-door charm proves difficult for Reagan to resist, despite her vow to live a drama-free existence. This summer, Reagan and Lilah will navigate the ups and downs of fame and friendship as they come to see that giving your heart to the right person is always a risk worth taking. A fresh new voice in contemporary romance, Emery Lord’s gorgeous writing hits all the right notes.

Open Road Summer was something I'd been greatly anticipating after hearing about it while going around visiting book blogs ( you've probably heard enough of it by now but I just have to talk about it). Whether it was people who had already read it or wanted to read it, I saw nothing but good things and my hype was quickly building. I even attempted to wait it out because school had me so busy and I was also currently reading something else. Alas, I'm not good at denying myself what I want! I started it....and I was immediately drawn into the book.

What I liked about it: Reagan O'neill, for starters. She was heart weary and a bit shattered emotionally after too many mistakes in her life, but she wanted to change things and to become a better version of herself. She didn't make excuses about her actions and she didn't take anyways crap. I also enjoyed that this was another female character in the young adult genre who wasn't squeaky clean; Reagan has had her fair share of fun with boys and other things and she's had her moments of carelessness.

“I wanted to reach back into my history with a grade-school pink eraser, scrubbing away my decisions like mistakes on a math test. Too bad I drew my mistakes in ink.”

Dee Montgomery was another great character. She was the complete opposite of Reagan in so many ways but she didn't judge Reagan for who she was or what she did. She was a sweetheart but she wasn't a bland one; you couldn't not love her and you certainly couldn't go without loving their friendship. It's one that most of us yearn for or are lucky enough to have ourselves.  They love each other to death, they trust one another so much with everything they have, and they support each other without a second of hesitancy when something goes wrong. Even if they're mad at each other. However, this doesn't mean their friendship was “perfect”. You can't be as close as they are and not occasionally butt heads. What's important is they don't let their fights get in between what's important to them: their friendships.

The third reason I liked it is the Romance of course! And Matt Finch. Thinking his name gives me warm feelings because he was such a beautiful addition to this novel. Reagan was hooked on him the moment they meet and so was I. But, Reagan being her new and improved self who doesn't want to do anything stupid, doesn't let him now just how much he affects her. They clash in the best of ways and his teasing is so perfect when it comes to breaking down Reagan's walls. His songs, his feelings, his actions, everything about him is so genuine and different than what Reagan believes she deserves so seeing the romance between them as they fell harder and harder was beyond any words I can type to try and explain. Did I mention he sings?

“Do you want me to beg you? Do you want me to say please? Then this is the rest of my pride, girl. This song is me down on my knees. Just give in, give in to me, girl. I'll give everything I've got.”

Overall, I enjoyed everything about this book. All of the characters, the plot, the dialogue and all the beautiful quotable words. Emery Lord gave me a contemporary young adult novel that I'll be thinking about for a long time, and will be making me switch up my list of favorites! Go forth and read it immediately!


  1. For me, it was totally Matt Finch's story. He stole the show for me. Gah. I didn't really like Regan at first but then as the story progressed and I got to know her, I really appreciated her.

    Aly @ My Heart Hearts Books

  2. Great review. Sounds like something I'd enjoy.