Rules of the Road by Joan Bauer This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

Between the endless stacks of remarkably similar fantasy novels, cheesy romances, and books about shallow girls who can’t get enough of scandal and gossip, a few unique and captivating books hide. The truth is, it’s hard to find a good young-adult novel, which is one of the main reasons I was so taken with Joan Bauer’s Rules of the Road.

Before you even realize you have opened it, you’re flying through the chapters of Jenna’s life. She lives in Chicago, loves to sell shoes, and has just been hired as the driver for the president of Gladstone Shoe Stores. Jenna doesn’t take this summer job for fun or money; she wants to escape her problems at home.

We learn that Jenna’s father is an alcoholic, who only appears every once in a while. Her sister, Faith, can’t understand why her dad doesn’t care. Her grandmother is suffering from Alzheimer’s and barely remembers her. But suddenly Jenna’s dad is around, and his late-night drunken phone calls are pushing her over the edge. She has to get away from all the madness.

On her trip, Jenna does indeed learn the “rules of the road.” We are merely her audience, sitting back and admiring her courage, heart, and strength. From the sidelines we cheer her on as she and her fierce employer take on Mrs. Gladstone’s son in a fight to maintain their product’s quality.

Jenna’s struggles and the wisdom she learns along the way will leave a profound impact on readers. Immersed in Jenna’s life, you will find yourself laughing and fighting back tears as you read this distinctly memorable book.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

lola said...
May 15, 2014 at 7:41 pm
i wonder this is going to work out with my project.
sabzz_25 said...
Mar. 20, 2012 at 6:32 pm
I am just wondering what colour Mrs.Gladstone eyes are?
Cristina M. said...
Jan. 16, 2010 at 5:37 pm
This book is definelty one of my well as this magnificent author. All who like a little bit of everything (adventure, romance, coming of age) thrown into the books they like to cuddle up with and read for hours will love Rules of the Road.
xoABBIExo said...
Mar. 12, 2009 at 11:57 pm
I liked this book
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