Along for the Ride

Along for the Ride

4.05 (195,850 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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Along for the Ride is a captivating young adult novel from New York Times Number One bestseller Sarah Dessen, about learning to let go and enjoy life.

Auden has always felt like the odd one out.

Since her parents' divorce she's shied away, studying lots and staying out of the party scene.

But now Auden's realized there must be something more and, just like that, she changes everything. Moving to her dad's house opens up a whole new whole of beach parties, food fights - and simply having fun.

As she gets to know herself - and a secretive boy with dark, brooding eyes - can Auden begin to let go and finally feel like she truly belongs?

Acclaim for Sarah Dessen:

'Unputdownable' MIZZ

'A poignant coming-of-age story' Big Issue

'A compelling story and beautifully written' Time Out

Sarah Dessen is the author of six stunning teen novels: Just Listen, The Truth about Forever, Lock and Key, That Summer and What Happened to Goodbye. She lives in the countryside in North Carolina with her daughter, husband, some lizards and two very spoilt dogs - read her once and fall in love.
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Paperback | 448 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 27mm | 309g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0141327480
  • 9780141327488
  • 56,672

Review quote

"Beautifully captures that sense of summer as a golden threshold between past regrets and future unknowns." -"The Washington Post"
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About Sarah Dessen

Sarah Dessen is one of America's most successful writers of teenage fiction. Her books have won various awards, and her latest novel, Lock and Key, reached number 1 in The New York Times bestseller list. Sarah lives in the countryside in North Carolina with her husband, daughter, some lizards and two very spoilt dogs. Sarah's following in the UK is growing all the time and this novel follows the success of the acclaimed Just Listen, The Truth About Forever, Lock and Key and That Summer.
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Rating details

195,850 ratings
4.05 out of 5 stars
5 40% (78,510)
4 33% (65,550)
3 20% (38,870)
2 5% (9,164)
1 2% (3,756)

Our customer reviews

Many other YA contemporaries present us with main characters who regret one or another thing from their pasts. Not Auden. She's always been content about her regulated and uneventful childhood. Auden has worked so hard for success and the approval of her parents that she completely missed out on making the memories other teens her age have made. In ALONG FOR THE RIDE she starts questioning her choices so far. She doesn't know it yet but her decision to spend the summer with her father, stepmum and baby sister in Colby will be her chance to make good for all that she's missed out on so far. Auden first appeared as a slightly alien main character. Never having partied, enjoyed shopping, meeting friends. She is definitly not your regular teen, but that makes you like her even more. Her days are mostly spent sleeping. It are the nights that count, in which she drinks coffee and wanders around town. They are restless and without any direction. Until Auden meets Eli and they begin spending their nights together on a kind of quest to make new memories. Their outings and adventures seemed so natural and sweet, I wished all the time that they could find a way to make their nights last forever. I'm a night person like Auden which made her even more sympathetic and her nights with Eli a YA highlight. What surprised me was that their love story wasn't as dominant as their friendship (people who actually know each other before they fall in love) and without too many intimate scenes or details (minimal deficit). Besides her nights with Eli, Auden's time in Colby is reserved for her new friends, summer job and her family. Auden's stepmom Heidi and her daughter Isby are two characters you immediately take into your heart, showing so much love and acceptance for Auden. Her unemotional and selfish parents on the other hand are very tough to like as they are anything but exemplary parents. Auden's offer to help out in Heidi's clothes shop is the key to an eventful summer in Colby. It's where she meets the hip girl trio Maggie, Leah and Esther and becomes friends with them. Their cliques' passion for BMX bikes provides ALONG FOR THE RIDE with an active hobby, offering to teach Auden and the reader more about a new sport. After two years of putting off reading ALONG FOR THE RIDE I finally picked it as a must read this summer. It was my first book by Sarah Dessen and now I know why so many readers name Sarah's books as their favourite YA contemporaries. 4,5/5 ****/* ALONG FOR THE RIDE - A smooth and fortifying read inviting readers to the beach town of Colby and on a felicitous YA summer vacation! ALONG FOR THE RIDE reminds you of your favourite childhood memories and encourages you to always go your own way and make as many new memories as you can, for you should know the best of times are always ahead of you. I totally get the appeal Sarah Dessen books have on YA readers, because they are about so many things that are important in your teen years. My next trip to Colby is already booked!show more
by MissPageTurner
I wasn't sure which book of hers to read first and so i just picked the first one i saw. I could not put it down and enjoyed it so much. I am looking forward to reading another one of her more
by Amanda
I adore the covers of Sarah Dessen's books they are just so beautiful. The story is beautifully written in 1st person narrative from the central characters, Auden, point of view. Very powerful and poignant prose, heartfelt from the start. It really brought a lot of cliches to mind such as 'you just have to be yourself'. The main focus at the start of the story is Auden's relationship with her parents and how she tries to win their attention/love/approval. I think this is something that we all do at some point in our lives. It also made me look at my relationship with my children and how I might be having a negative affect on their self-confidence. I can tell you it was not an easy thing to do. The story emphasises that it is not only children that should earn approval but parents as well. Is it me or do most parents try to life vicariously through their children - living their own dreams through them rather than allowing them to discover their own dreams. OR being disappointed if the child's ambitions are different from our own. I try to give my children the opportunities to explore different things to be able to make an informed decision about their choices. As I said the story really did bring a lot of cliches to mind, another is not to compare siblings to each other as they are all individual with different strengths and weaknesses. All the characters were extremely well written. I especially liked Eli (I wonder why?) and Maggie came as a complete surprise bringing the adage of 'never judge a book' by it's cover to mind. I was surprised at Auden's actions after a significant event within the story, especially those towards Eli. It was her 'right of passage' so to speak. On the whole a lovely heart-warming story that both teens and parents will relate more
by Emma Davies
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