Praise for Paullina Simons
“[A] beautifully written first novel…. A strong story line with great characterization makes this book hard to put down.” — Library Journal
“Reads fast like a sudden surge of wind over the plains, and the book’s momentum builds to tornado force.” — USA Today
Paullina Simons is the internationally bestselling author of Tully and The Bronze Horseman. In Road to Paradise love, passion, and friendship collide on the road trip of a lifetime.
Shelby Sloane has big plans for the summer of 1981. She’ll drive cross country in her graduation present—a classic yellow Mustang. In California, she hopes to find the mother who left her behind long ago, and then return East in time to start college at an Ivy League school. Her estranged friend Gina is desperate to reunite with her boyfriend in Bakersfield, and eventually convinces Shelby to bring her along.
With Gina on board, Shelby’s carefully mapped-out itinerary is quickly abandoned. Their “no hitchhikers” rule falls by the wayside when Shelby picks up a mysterious girl named Candy Cane, who sets the girls on a new and dangerous course. Streetwise beyond her years and decked out with tattoos, piercings, and spiky hair, Candy is on the run from a sinister character and a past darker than anything Shelby or Gina, typical suburban teens, have ever known. Candy draws Shelby and Gina into her terrifying world, where life as they know it is turned upside down and there is no place left to hide.
Much like the journey of life itself, The Road to Paradise considers dreams, disappointments, and belief, and the lasting weight of the first significant decisions we make as adults.