Eli, with his shoulder length dark hair, tan skin and green eyes, is the loner, quiet one of the Dessen boys. I don’t want to tell you too much about Eli because I feel it would take away some of the intrigue about him you get from the book. Auden at one time describes him as “sullen stranger, trick biker, baby whisperer” which made me laugh but it’s also pretty accurate.
Favorite Eli scene (or one of…):
Eli doesn’t talk, Leah had said. To anyone. Ever. But he had to me, and maybe that did mean something, even if it wasn’t clear just what.
“I don’t know,” I said. “I just…I thought you might want to talk, or something.”
Eli shut the drawer, slowly, and looked at me. […]
“Talk,” he said, his voice flat.
“Yeah.” He was just sitting there, staring at me, expressionless, and I felt not unlike when my mom got me in her sights, a serious squirm coming on. “You’re up, I’m up. I just figured…”
“Oh, I get it,” he said, nodding. “Right. You know now.”
“Know…” I said.
He shook his head. “I should have known when I saw you at the door. Not to mention at the party. Maggie isn’t exactly known for holding back information.”
I just sat there, not sure what to do. I said, “Look, I’m sorry. I just thought…”
“I know what you thought.” […] “And I appreciate you wanting to help me, or whatever. But I don’t need it. Okay?”
I nodded numbly. Suddenly the room seemed too bright, illuminating every single one of my failings. I slid off the stool. “I should go,” I said. “It’s late.”
Eli looked over at me. I remembered how that first night, I’d thought of him as haunted, before I knew this was true. He said, “Do you want to know why I talk to you?”
“Yeah,” I said. “I do.”
“Because,” he said, “from the first day on the boardwalk, you were different. You never tiptoed around me, or acted all weird and sorry for me, or gave me that look.”
“That one,” he said, pointing at my face. I felt myself blush. “You were just…normal. Until tonight.”
“You know,” I said, leaning against the doorjamb, “I’m actually really relieved to hear you say that. Because I don’t want to feel sorry for you.”
“You don’t,” he said, not looking up.
“Nope. The truth is, I’m actually kind of angry with you.”
“Angry?” I nodded. He lifted his head: now, I had his attention. “And why is that?”
“Because you almost got my ass kicked tonight.”
I rolled my eyes. “Like you didn’t know that was your girlfriend I was talking about,” I told him. “Not to mention looking at while I was talking about.”
“Hold on,” he said. “She’s—”
“You just let me stand there and shoot off my mouth,” I continued, ignoring this, “and then, when she came after me…”
“She came after you?”
“She poked me in the chest and called me a skank,” I said. He raised his eyebrows. “And meanwhile, you’re off eating cupcakes somewhere.”
“Excuse me,” he said, pushing the drawer shut, “but you were the one who told me to eat the cupcakes.”
“When I didn’t know my life was in danger!” I sighed. “All I’m saying is that you kind of left me out there to fend for myself. Which was not very cool.”
“Look,” he said, “Belissa is not my girlfriend.”
“You might want to tell her that,” I replied. “If you can, you know, make time during all that cupcake eating.”
I know this scene is long, but I wanted to make up for the short Eli description. I hope you guys liked it! :D
And here’s a quote from this book that’s always stayed with me:
“Maybe the truth was, it shouldn’t be easy to be amazing. Then everything would be. It’s the things you fight for and struggle with before earning that have the greatest worth. When something’s difficult to come by, you’ll do that much more to make sure it’s even harder—if not impossible—to lose.”
Here is the synopsis for Along for the Ride:
“It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.
A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.
In her signature pitch-perfect style, Sarah Dessen explores the hearts of two lonely people learning to connect.”
And now for the Along for the Ride Giveaway!
* You must be at least 13 years old to enter.
* The form below must be filled out to be officially entered.
* Contest is US Only. (I’m sorry!)
* Ends May 22nd, 2011 at 12:00pm CST.
* Winner will be chosen using Random.org
* Winner has 48 hours to respond.