Allie And Bea by Catherine Ryan Hyde
Bea has barely been scraping by since her husband died. After falling for a telephone scam, she loses everything and is forced to abandon her trailer. With only two-thirds of a tank in her old van, she heads toward the Pacific Ocean with her cat—on a mission to reclaim what’s rightfully hers, even if it means making others pay for what she lost.
When fifteen-year-old Allie’s parents are jailed for tax fraud, she’s sent to a group home. But when her life is threatened by another resident, she knows she has to get out. She escapes only to find she has nowhere to go—until fate throws Allie in Bea’s path.
Reluctant to trust each other, much less become friends, the two warily make their way up the Pacific Coast. Yet as their hearts open to friendship and love from the strangers they meet on their journey, they find the courage to forge their own unique family—and begin to see an imperfect world with new eyes.
Allie And Bea was exactly what I needed to read at the moment I was reading it. I was having a rough day, in need of something to snap me out of it, when I picked up Allie And Bea on the kindle. It’s a tale of an unlikely duo travelling along the California coast, and discovering things about themselves and each other along the way.
Bea is a widow who is only just getting by when she is scammed out of the last of the funds she has. With no other options, she moves into her van and hits the road looking for the perfect spot to stay. Allie is a teenager who suddenly and unexpectedly finds herself in foster care. After she runs away from the foster home, and escapes a terrifying situation, she finds Bea and her van. Bea reluctantly agrees to give the teen a ride to the next town. And from there the adventure unfolds.
The novel is told from the perspectives of both Allie and Bea. Initially, both characters took a bit of getting used to. Neither were brilliant right off the bat, and as things unfolded and I got to know them more, I found myself developing quite the soft spot. Bea was the hardest of the two to learn to like, but there are a few redeeming moments that make up for some of the other behaviours.
Bea is a cantankerous and bitter, set in her ways old woman. Allie is an opinionated and slightly condescending person in many ways. But together, as time progresses, the two characters discover more about themselves and each other. Suddenly this road trip becomes exciting with fun stops and interesting characters along the way.
And I will say that the ending truly warmed my heart. This is a quick, light hearted read, though it does contain a few darker moments. It made me smile and was the perfect thing to read on a bad day.
Have you read Allie And Bea? Let me know!