Hit the Road

Hit the Road

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by Caroline B. Cooney
     
 

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Brit has had her driver’s license only 11 days when her parents drop her off to stay at her grandmother’s house for two weeks while they go on vacation. Little do they know Brit is headed for a three-state road trip with Nannie to pick up her college roommates, Florence, Aurelia, and Daisy, and bring them to their alma mater for their 65th—and

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Overview

Brit has had her driver’s license only 11 days when her parents drop her off to stay at her grandmother’s house for two weeks while they go on vacation. Little do they know Brit is headed for a three-state road trip with Nannie to pick up her college roommates, Florence, Aurelia, and Daisy, and bring them to their alma mater for their 65th—and most likely final—reunion.

A reluctant recruit at first, Brit is anxious as well as annoyed when she finds herself responsible for her fragile passengers. But things change as she sits behind the wheel up front and listens to “the girls” in the backseat laugh and reminisce about their 65 years of friendship. Inspired by their lifelong loyalty, Brit is willing to do whatever it takes to get the former college roommates to their reunion safely.

From bestselling author Caroline B. Cooney, a heartwarming look at friendship, both young and old.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Cooney masterfully combines nonstop, cleverly plotted action with heartfelt emotion.”–Booklist, Starred

“An unexpected, touching and effective sojourn from the always entertaining Cooney.”–Kirkus Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Cooney's (Code Orange) latest novel accelerates from 0-60 in its first three pages, when Brittany is put in the driver's seat (literally) of a wild scheme masterminded by her normally placid grandmother. Nannie is determined to attend her 65th college reunion in Maine but unable to drive the minivan she has rented. After picking up Nannie's former college roommate Flo, the three then "kidnap" another college roommate, Aurelia, from the nursing home to which her "dreadful wicked son," Aston, has committed her. A novice driver who has had her license for less than two weeks, Brit soon finds herself chauffeuring her 86-year-old passengers along highways from Connecticut to Long Island and on to Massachusetts, along the way accomplishing such feats as backing up, parallel parking, and even driving onto and off of a ferry. Moral support comes from an unexpected source: Brit's long-time crush, Cooper, who has spent the past six months acting distant, but whose frequent cell phone calls to her indicate a different set of feelings. The novel's pacing is well above the speed limit, and Aston turns out to be a formidable villain whose presence lends some urgency to the thoroughly enjoyable novice-driver slapstick. Skillfully woven through the adventure are some thoughtful and touching observations about what it means to be merging onto the highway of adulthood while a loved one's exit ramp is soon approaching. Ages 12-up. (May) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
VOYA - Rebecca C. Moore
Brittany Bowman has had her driver's license exactly eleven days when she is shanghaied into chauffeuring her grandmother and friends to their sixty-fifth college reunion. It is not exactly a Sunday drive, and she soon finds herself illegally piloting a rental van, kidnapping one of the "girls" from her nursing home, and then evading police and the kidnappee's son-as well as getting an eye-opening view of old age and fielding sudden attention from a formerly unfriendly crush. As the escapade spins out of control, Brittany must decide whom to believe-a possible Alzheimer's patient or a son who claims to want the best for his mother. Before Brittany decides, however, everyone shows their true colors, and Brittany and "the girls" must act fast to save their futures. Although the would-be heart of this book is friendship, the more compelling themes are loss of power and choice in old age and the dilemma of the young about how best to serve the elderly. Unfortunately Brittany's revelations come across as a message to be delivered, and eliminating her need to choose between mother and son leaves the reader feeling somewhat cheated. In addition, the frenetic endgame strains credulity, turning realistic adventure into melodrama-complete with sneering villain and last-minute rescue by charming young heroes. Still thoughtful readers may come away with more sympathy for grandparental foibles, and others will just enjoy Brittany's hapless adventure and romantic quandary. For another look at kidnapping/rescuing an elderly woman for a road trip, see Deb Caletti's Honey, Baby, Sweetheart (Simon & Schuster, 2004/VOYA August 2004).
KLIATT
AGERANGE: Ages 12 to 18.

To quote the review of the hardcover in KLIATT, May 2006: Brittany Anne Bowman is standing at her grandmother’s house as her parents take off for a trip to Alaska. Dumped on the doorstep, or so she thinks. As it turns out, this is not going to be a dull stay--her Nannie Scott has other plans, plans that include illegal driving and kidnapping. Nannie and Nannie’s dearest friends, Flo, Aurelia and Daisy, are planning on attending their college reunion in Massachusetts, even though they no longer have driver’s licenses and Aurelia has been sent to live in an assisted living facility against her will. What’s a granddaughter to do? Join them, of course. This is a delightful romp through the generations, from white gloves and tea parties through cell phones and the Internet. But what emerges is a sense of family values, of listening to each other and of respect for both teens and the aged. Nannie and her friends are determined not to miss their 60th college reunion and though Brittany isn’t sure why, she comes to understand that the women see it as their last one together. That realization propels Brittany into the adventure as driver and kidnapper, wanting the four friends to have this opportunity. Along the way, Brittany keeps in touch with girlfriends and the crush of her life, Coop, through her cell phone and text messaging. Cooney delivers with humor the poignant interaction between young and old. Reviewer: Janis Flint-Ferguson
March 2008 (Vol. 42, No.2)

School Library Journal
Gr 8-10-Sixteen-year-old Brit is illegally driving her Nannie and two other elderly women over three states, trying to get them to their 65th college reunion. The women have shared their lives together and, now frail yet determined, they need Brit's help. Brit, meanwhile, is running on adrenaline. Driving atrociously at first, she is also falsifying where she and Nannie are to her parents, who are on a trip to Alaska. Her cell phone proves to be essential as she talks to Coop, the boy she has loved for ages but who has blatantly snubbed her, and who suddenly takes an interest in her cross-country caper involving a kidnapping of one of "the girls." The kidnap victim, Aurelia, has an evil son, Aston III, who is out to steal his mother's fortune, using any method to do so. The tension peaks when Brit meets Aston face to face. Starting out slowly, the book is both a last-hurrah adventure for the women and a beginning one for Brit, yet it is somewhat trite as all the pieces fit together and everything ends "happily ever after-."-Tracy Karbel, Glenside Public Library District, Glendale Heights, IL Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Cooney begins this latest outing as a rather sweet comedy that evolves into her patented suspense caper. Brit, 16, has just received her driver's license when she's thrust into a criminal enterprise concocted by her 86-year-old grandmother. Sent to stay with grandma while her parents take a trip to Alaska, Brit no sooner arrives than she learns that grandma intends to kidnap an elderly friend to help her escape the woman's apparently unloving son. Grandma has rented an SUV and talks Brit into driving on terrifying highways from Long Island to Massachusetts. Soon Brit learns that the son indeed is dangerous, and that Brit is far too involved in an enterprise that might ruin her whole life. Along the way, Brit learns to respect her grandma's fading generation for their courage and love. An unexpected, touching and effective sojourn from the always entertaining Cooney. (Fiction. YA)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780440229292
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
01/08/2008
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
4.10(w) x 6.80(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Caroline B. Cooney is the author of Goddess of Yesterday (an ALA Notable Children’s Book); The Ransom of Mercy Carter; and The Face on the Milk Carton (an IRA–CBC Children’s Choice). She lives in Westbrook, CT.

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Hit the Road 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
HIT THE ROAD was a good book. Nothing really truly special. The book is about the four Buttermere girls: Nannie Rawlings, Florence "Flo" Mirsky, Aurelia Alan, Daisy Ferrer and Nannie's 16-year-old granddaughter with a drivers license as of 11 days ago: Brittney Anne Bowman. Poor Brit has been sent to stay with Nannie for two weeks while her parents go on a cruise in Alaska. Unbeknownst to them Brit ends up driving illegally across New England to get the four girls to reunion. This entails driving a gaint bronze Safari on the highway and kiddnapping Aurelia from her retirement home that her greedy son Aston 3 has put her. The whole book was very good. Me being 13 and all of my grandparents in their sixties and fully competent and able to drive, I couldn't relate to Brit personally. But it was funny and touching all the same. My one complaint was the end. There was not enough at the end. I wanted more, and not in a good way. You never even met Daisy...
DoctormomTX More than 1 year ago
THis is a wonderful book. It should be read by parents, children and grandchildren. My daughter recommended it since she and her "mother/daughter book club" read and enjoyed it. It is funny and gives you an inside look at the elderly and teens.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hit The Road is amazing. I think the book is different from others because, it talks a bout this 16 year old girl named Brit l that is stuck watching her grandmother for two weeks. Only because her parents took a vacation to Alaska. For Nanny (86 years old ) is nearly helpless without Brit. It's crazy how Nanny (Grandmother) is willing to kidnap her past college friends by the help of her granddaughter, because Nanny is to old. Brit who is illegally driving has a difficult time on the road. What I enjoyed the most was how Brit showed that she loved grandmother so much, by putting her future and trust of her parents at risk. Reading this book has made me realize how much Brit loved her grandmother. You should read this because it is full of problems that has to me solved, supence and mostly humor.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Geek Squad-B Hit the road is about this girl who goes on this adventure all over the unted states with her grandma. Lots of exciting things happens. The part of the book i enjoyed the most was how the grandma was expecting to drive to a reunion when she couldnt drive. You should read this book because it is a great adventure from the beggining of the book to the end. Great Book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Hit The Road" is about a girl named Brittany is on summer vacation and she is dropped off at her grandma's house. Little does she know she is going on an adventure. Nannie (the grandmother) is an old woman who cant see or hear that well, she is not allowed to drive because of Brit's mother cutting her drivers license in half . Nannie gets herself a rental car to go to a reunion but since she doesn't have her drivers license so Brit has to drive. Brit has only had her license for eleven days. Brit decided to drive for her. Brit didn't know where she was going and they were supposed to pickup three of Nannie's friends and one of them was going to have to be a kidnapping. The Aurelia they had to kidnap was in a nursing home and they had to find a way to sneak her out to the reunion. The part of this book I enjoyed the most was when they were doing the kidnapping because it was suspenseful. The part of this book I least liked was when Ashton keyed his own car to frame Brit, but then Rupert and Cooper videoed Ash keying his own car so he got caught trying to frame Brit. You should read this book because it is full of suspense and it is really funny and just a good book to read all around, There are a lot of instances were there is suspense like when Brit doesn't know what road to take and Nannie is paying attention so she is panicking and worried about what road to take and she does not want to get lost on the highway.
2dancers More than 1 year ago
"Hit The Road" was originally purchased as a gift for my 11 year old granddaughter. I always read the books which I purchase to be gifts before I give them as a gift. However, I think this book is a little too mature for my granddaughter. As a senior citizen, I must say that I found it humourous and enjoyed the strong feelings that were felt by the senior women in this story. It was adventuous and it also gave great insights to some of the changes in life styles that happen to all of us as we mature. For teenagers, this book would be fun to read, especially if they are blessed with an elderly grandmother that they have shared many past happy memories with. I didn't want to put this book down and finished reading it in two days, and was pleased with the sentiments and the ending of this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
If you want to read one of the most hilarious books of the summer, then you definitely need to pick up a copy of HIT THE ROAD by Caroline B. Cooney. I can't remember the last time I laughed so hard, or so often, while reading a book. If you've always believed that people over the age of eighty are nothing but dried up old husks of their former selves, then you need to meet the Buttermeres: Nannie Rawlings, Florence Mirsky, Aurelia Alan, and Daisy Ferrer. And the girl destined to either make an entire carload of new friends, or go crazy in the process, Brittany Anne Bowman.

Forced into her grandmother's care for two weeks while her parents cruise around Alaska, neither Brit nor Nannie particularly want to be babysat. After her own daughter cut her driver's license in half, took away her car, and left her to gather dust, Nannie Rawlings isn't in the best of moods. She's already missed out on last year's Reunion with her three best friends, but this year is number sixty-five, and she has no intention of not attending. So she gets a new license (through less than noble means), rents a car, and sets off with her granddaughter to pick up her friends. Brit soon realizes that if she wants to make it to the Reunion alive and in one piece, she's going to have to be the driver/chaueffer. Which isn't that bad except for situations like this:

"Nannie!" she yelled. "Read the signs! Tell me what to do! Do we want the Cross Island Parkway? Two-ninety-five? Four-ninety-five? The Van Wyck? The L.I.E.? The Long Island Expressway?"

"Those two are the same road."

"But do we want them?" Brit shrieked.

Thus begins a road trip that no one involved is likely to ever forget. Between convincing her parents via cell phone that they're at Nannie's house watching loud television, and convincing the "girls" that no one at the nursing home will realize they're gone, to avoiding the ruthless, money-hungry son of one of their own, HIT THE ROAD is a laugh-out-loud, nonstop story that will have you turning pages long into the night. A winning read that is as emotional as it is funny, Ms. Cooney has penned a definite winner.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Brittany Anne Bowman¿s life sucks, and currently she has no prospects that it is going to get any better. Her parents leave for a vacation to Alaska (clear across the country), and she is left in the clutches of Nannie, her eighty-six year old grandma. Brit¿s mother has cut up Nannie¿s license and has sold Nannie¿s car because Nannie just isn¿t capable of caring for herself any more. That¿s when Nannie emotionally blackmails Brit into driving (highly illegally) a rental car across New England to pick up ¿the girls.¿ The girls are Nannie¿s college chums and they are going to spring Aurelia from the nursing home where her evil doctor of a son is holding her hostage. It¿s raining, cold, Brit is living in fear of never being allowed to drive again, and is trying to work through the demise of a crush that she had very much wanted to keep. This story has all of the plot twists that you would expect from the author of The Face on the Milk Carton, and Ms. Cooney doesn¿t disappoint. With an adept hand she reveals both the frustration of a teenager trying to find herself as well as the plight of the elderly. Our culture frequently discounts its elderly, and this poignantly written book does an excellent job of bridging the generations in a way that readers of any age can appreciate. Given the aging population of our country, this would be a wonderful discussion tool for Sociology, Health, or CWP courses.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you want to read one of the most hilarious books of the summer, then you definitely need to pick up a copy of HIT THE ROAD by Caroline B. Cooney. I can't remember the last time I laughed so hard, or so often, while reading a book. If you've always believed that people over the age of eighty are nothing but dried up old husks of their former selves, then you need to meet the Buttermeres: Nannie Rawlings, Florence Mirsky, Aurelia Alan, and Daisy Ferrer. And the girl destined to either make an entire carload of new friends, or go crazy in the process, Brittany Anne Bowman. Forced into her grandmother's care for two weeks while her parents cruise around Alaska, neither Brit nor Nannie particularly want to be babysat. After her own daughter cut her driver's license in half, took away her car, and left her to gather dust, Nannie Rawlings isn't in the best of moods. She's already missed out on last year's Reunion with her three best friends, but this year is number sixty-five, and she has no intention of not attending. So she gets a new license (through less than noble means), rents a car, and sets off with her granddaughter to pick up her friends. Brit soon realizes that if she wants to make it to the Reunion alive and in one piece, she's going to have to be the driver/chaueffer. Which isn't that bad except for situations like this: 'Nannie!' she yelled. 'Read the signs! Tell me what to do! Do we want the Cross Island Parkway? Two-ninety-five? Four-ninety-five? The Van Wyck? The L.I.E.? The Long Island Expressway?' 'Those two are the same road.' 'But do we want them?' Brit shrieked. Thus begins a road trip that no one involved is likely to ever forget. Between convincing her parents via cell phone that they're at Nannie's house watching loud television, and convincing the 'girls' that no one at the nursing home will realize they're gone, to avoiding the ruthless, money-hungry son of one of their own, HIT THE ROAD is a laugh-out-loud, nonstop story that will have you turning pages long into the night. A winning read that is as emotional as it is funny, Ms. Cooney has penned a definite winner.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book was about grandmothers and kidnapping. Brit takes her grandmother to her reunion while also pulling off a kidnapping. They pick up her grandmother's friend to help with the kidnapping. Some surprise characters come in too. The best part of the book was the ending. Everything else in the book was boring. If you really like books that gets good at the end, this is for you. Give it a try!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I liked this book, but I didn't love it. It just didn't grab me. It wasn't one of those books that you can't put down. I mean, I'd stop in the middle of a chapter because it was boring. I'd recomend it, but it wasn't anything special.