Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

In Honor

Rate this book
Honor receives her brother’s last letter from Iraq three days after learning that he died, and opens it the day his fellow Marines lay the flag over his casket. Its contents are a complete shock: concert tickets to see Kyra Kelly, her favorite pop star and Finn’s celebrity crush. In his letter, he jokingly charged Honor with the task of telling Kyra Kelly that he was in love with her.

Grief-stricken and determined to grant Finn’s last request, she rushes to leave immediately. But she only gets as far as the driveway before running into Rusty, Finn’s best friend since third grade and his polar opposite. She hasn’t seen him in ages, thanks to a falling out between the two guys, but Rusty is much the same as Honor remembers him: arrogant, stubborn . . . and ruggedly good-looking. Neither one is what the other would ever look for in a road trip partner, but the two of them set off together, on a voyage that makes sense only because it doesn’t. Along the way, they find small and sometimes surprising ways to ease their shared loss and honor Finn--but when shocking truths are revealed at the end of the road, will either of them be able to cope with the consequences?

235 pages, Hardcover

First published May 8, 2012

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Jessi Kirby

11 books1,352 followers

Jessi Kirby is a former English teacher and librarian. She lives in Orange County, CA with her husband and two kids, where she writes stories and runs the beach every day. Well, almost every day.

You can contact Jessi at jessi@jessikirby.com

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
2,345 (27%)
4 stars
2,657 (31%)
3 stars
2,495 (29%)
2 stars
792 (9%)
1 star
278 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 738 reviews
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,993 reviews298k followers
June 5, 2012

You know, I really only have myself to blame for this. I knew it was a bad idea to take on a novel that is both a contemporary romance and a road trip story. Normally, I tend to do my best to avoid either, but there was just something in me that hoped this book would be the exception, that I would fall in love with Rusty as most girls undoubtedly will. But I found everything about this overly simplistic and just rather boring.

Honor's brother died in Iraq and she has received a late letter from him with two tickets to a Kyra Kelley concert (her favourite singer) and his final wish that she decides to take literally - tell Kyra all about her brother. So Honor sets out on a road trip from Texas to California with an unexpected tag-a-long in the form of her brother's ex-best friend, Rusty. Frankly, nothing that much seems to happen. So they're in this car, they face car troubles, a storm, and a touch of lust that naturally comes when two extremely good-looking people spend days together in a hot car and are forced to remove their clothing as a result. It's a very simplistic romance story that will appeal to fans of very simplistic romance stories. And Tim Riggins fans, apparently.

This could be my main problem, I actually had to google Tim Riggins to see what kind of hotness I was missing out on - and yup, he's definitely cute. But I've heard that Rusty actually is Tim Riggins and, beyond the very pleasant visuals this gave me, this meant very little to me. I felt like I was missing something from Rusty and I suspect that something may be love for Tim Riggins, but who knows how I would feel if I'd loved the real life man? I also can't help thinking that this is just one thing in a long line of unoriginality. For a start, it's all a bit cheesy and cliche: the road trip, the romantic development, Rusty's typical smirky arrogance... and Honor is a bland protagonist. Two pretty people get in a car and flirt, that's pretty much the story as I see it.

Furthermore, I cannot be the only one to think that Tim Riggins isn't the only celebrity that the author borrowed for this book. Kyra Kelley is described in this way:

She was sweet and earnest and wrote her own songs. Songs about getting her heart broken by boys who didn't know she existed or who were in love with girls all wrong for them. I followed in magazines her transformation from country girl to pop crossover, to graceful twenty-something singer-turned-model-turned-actress... who was singing a song about wishing she'd never have to grow up.

I mean, come on, that is so obviously Taylor Swift - right?

This whole book was just a little too cute, a bit like one big Taylor Swift song with an ending that is so perfect, it's practically a cheesefest. Also, I would think that seeing as both Honor and Rusty are so quick to strip down to their underwear in the heat, there could've been a little bit more action. Not just one mediocre kiss. Perhaps I'm way too much of a hussy for young adult romance... ah well.
Profile Image for Aj the Ravenous Reader.
1,051 reviews1,050 followers
May 9, 2018

A beautifully written story of grief and loss shared by the main characters, Honor and her brother’s best friend Rusty as they embark on an impromptu road trip (even though the last thing they want is to be around each other’s company) to honor the memory of Finn, Honor’s brother who died while on battle.

I feel like I could see a pattern in Ms. Jessy Kirby’s stories. They’re usually about grief written in a very lyrical but realistic manner without overwhelming the reader with too much emotion so that you could actually enjoy the read despite the sad undertone of the story. There’s also that consistent subtle but funny humor and that adorable romance that’s almost barely there making you long for more. There’s a picturesque description of places the characters visit and the story concludes perfectly.

So just like Things We Know by Heart, In Honor is a perfect summer read that is both entertaining and touching at the same time. I would definitely read more books by the author.
Profile Image for Maggie.
432 reviews429 followers
May 7, 2012
My unofficial title for In Honor is 33 Shades of Blue. This isn't mommy porn; this is straight up Maggie porn.

There are a lot of reasons to read In Honor -- likable main character, road trip to California, scuba diving (who knew it could be so hot?), and some really beautiful images of nature. But really, there's ONE main reason:

Tim Riggins.

Before I digress, and I will digress, let's talk plot. In Honor begins with our main character, Honor, at the funeral of her beloved older brother, Finn. 18-year-old Finn, the high school football star who rejected his college football scholarship to enlist in the Marines, died while serving in Iraq. A few days after he dies, Honor gets a delayed letter from him written months before his death. This isn't a meaningful, symbolic letter written while in the trenches because a) there aren't any trenches in Iraq, and b) this isn't a paranormal romance where the characters know when they're going to die. Rather this letter is more along the lines of a you-always-complain-about-me-never-writing-you-any-letters-so-here's-a-letter letter.

However, as a surprise, Finn included two tickets to see Kyra Kelley, Honor's all time favorite singer, in California. Finn closes the letter by telling Honor to put her feet in the ocean and tell Kyra Kelley about "her handsome older brother." Honor knows this isn't some final dying wish of his, but as a way to hold on to him, she chooses to interpret his letter literally. All you readers who complain about how underdeveloped parents are in YA, this isn't a problem here. The parents are killed off way before the book starts. (Is it wrong to put a smiley face here? Yeah, probably. Okay, moving on...) For Honor, losing Finn isn't just losing a brother, it's losing her only family. This makes her impetuous decision to drive alone from Texas to California, without telling anyone, to see a concert believable. Sure, she's grasping at straws but you can understand her motivation. However, she doesn't end up making the trip alone. Enter Rusty.

Rusty was Finn's best friend. They did everything together from the time they were 5 years old, including rebuilding a classic Chevy Impala. However, when Finn decided to enlist instead of going to college together, their friendship cracked. This is why Honor is surprised when she spots Rusty at the funeral. What doesn't surprise her is that there's a beer bottle wrapped in a paper bag at his side. He spots her the next day as she's preparing to leave for California in the Pala, and he invites himself along. This is where the story really begins.

Now let's get back to #33. This is why I love YA. Jessi Kirby unabashedly loves Friday Night Lights and Tim Riggins and unapologetically writes him into her story.

Picture of Jessi Kirby posted by Heidi Kling on Twitter.
Look at the shirt! How can you not love her?

However, such is her talent that it doesn't read like fan fiction -- or my diary. Tim is the base, and the face and the voice (at least in my head), but the character is Rusty. There are times when Rusty says or does something and it's just that much hotter picturing Tim Riggins saying and doing it. Including talking about foot sweat. It cracked me up when Honor, after having shared a beautiful moment with someone else, is walking through the woods pondering the sweetness of lif--OH HAI, SHIRTLESS RUSTY. Can you blame her? Not even when Rusty says things like,
"There's a lot they like about me, H, but it doesn't have much to do with football. Or conversation."
I put a "33!" in my notes here. Speaking of my notes, I needed to buy a bigger pack of Post-it flags. Most of those notes refer to Riggins-worthy moments, but my favorite notes involve Finn. I loved Finn, or rather the memory of him. If you've read Sarah Ockler's Twenty Boy Summer, the sibling relationship in In Honor rivals that. I sobbed through Twenty Boy Summer, but In Honor has a much lighter tone with notable poignant moments. There are two endings in this book. The first one, I loved. I thought it was true to the characters and as it should be. The second ending... I didn't need. Don't get me wrong, it was SUPER cute, but I didn't think it was necessary. There are some predictable scenes but overall, I really enjoyed where this book took me. And for Honor and for me, it's about the journey, not the destination.

Rating: Riggins would tell you to read this book. 4/5 stars.

This review appears on Young Adult Anonymous.
Profile Image for Ari.
940 reviews1,314 followers
March 20, 2015
Heartbreakingly beautiful..

Oh, sometimes I think that I’m so done with tragic books.
They break me in a way nothing else does. They tear my heart apart, splitting it into a million pieces for the wind to blow away. I love them and hate them with the power of hurricanes because they get to me in such whay that they are even able to make me cry, but I can seem to be able to stay away from them and it all comes down to me finding another wonderful story to lock into my heart forever.

"There’s a big world out there and I’m seeing it now— the good and the bad.
And you will too. Have a few adventures while you’re out there. Put your feet in the ocean. Watch the stars disappear into morning. Then when I get back we’ll compare notes."

I wish I could put into words how wonderful this story really was for me. How the happy moments made me smile, and the achy feeling made my eyes tear of emotion, how I wished for Honor to have her wishes come true, how I wanted for her and Rus (her old best friend) to find a middle way and to enjoy their time together... Oh how I wished for them to see all the beauty life could bring to them; to enjoy all the things Honor’s brother (Finn) never could or would again.

They never intended to take this trip together, but in his honor and with their hearts broken, somehow Honor and Rus went on a journey to fulfill his last wish. Well, technically it wasn’t really his last wish, but for Honor this was the only way to feel close to him again... Trying to do something for him made her pain a bit more bearable, and the goodbye so much more personal.

The reason for this trip was simple: Honor needed to say goodbye in her own way. All that comes next is complicated, because she needs to learn how to live her life without her brother - to see the stars melt in the morning light, to put her feet in the ocean, to see some music star and tell her about her brother (even though she doesn't know what to say, even though it sound crazy)... Because this is what people do when someone's gone - they take to heart everything they were said, even if it was a joke; because when the pain is just too strong you need something, anything to hold on to, you need something to remind you how to breath, how to move, how to live.. You need a path to follow, and you would follow any guidelines you might find.

Sometimes Honor felt like all that nightmare wasn't real.
Sometimes she woke up and everything seemed fine but only for an instant - until she remembered.
I know that feeling that chokes you, I know how it is to lose someone dear to you, I know how it breaks you, I know how you would do every stupid thing in the entire world to feel like you are close to that person for just one more moment. I know how it is to wish that you could at least have said good bye, and any insignificant gesture can be important enough for you if you make it in someone's honor..

But Finn's death didn't break only Honor's heart. His best friend Rusty was as angry and confused. They were both so full of sadness and anger, they needed to blame their pain on something, on someone... And so they got off on the wrong foot.
In her pain Honor was mean to him, in his anger he was being a jerk to her, and as the story unfolded i just waited for them to figure it out and realize that they can enjoy this time together instead of having cute fights over mostly nothing.

I wanted to reach to them, to give them a big hug and try somehow to take their pain away. I wanted to plead to them to be nice to each other, because sometimes all you need is someone to share the weight of your pain with.. and maybe they weren’t the best company posible, but at least they were not alone, at least they still had each other.


I liked to see them come around through the story and realize that they were still friends, that they need each other, that they still care about one another, that there's a whole history between them that they can't forget. I loved to see that it wasn't just Finn holding them together, because their friendship was real.

So, yes.. it broke my heart many times but I still loved this book. It was like the other side of the story from Something Like Normal (if you get to read both books you will know what I mean by this).
Note: You might also like Saving June, as the storyline is quite similar.

I hope that you will enjoy it as well and it won't break too much your heart!
Happy midnight reading!

** This review can also be found at ReadingAfterMidnight.com

Blog (EN) | Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | Bloglovin' | Blog (RO)
Profile Image for Norah Una Sumner.
855 reviews453 followers
April 6, 2016
4.5 stars

First of all, Jessi, you cannot just write a book including 67 Chevy Impala and Kansas music and not expect me to picture Rusty like this:


Second of all, thank you for including these things in your book. LOVE YOU!

Now, the review. When I like a book I usually write a short review because I feel like I’m just ruining the beauty of it by analysing it. So, I just wanted to say that Jessi Kirby’s characters are always real and complex – that’s what’s so awesome about them, you can easily relate to them all. The story is captivating, as always, and the writing is too beautiful to handle. Ever since I’ve read Things We Know by Heart, which I LOVED, I’ve been planning on reading more from Kirby. And man, this woman can write. I’m seriously looking forward to reading her book Golden, I’ve heard so many amazing things about it. But,yeah, In Honor? Awesome read for YA readers.


Really enjoyed reading this baby!

You can read my review on BookishFever.
Profile Image for ♥Rachel♥.
1,910 reviews852 followers
May 14, 2012

Honor has just buried her older brother Finn. He was killed in action while on duty in Iraq. After a long day at the funereal, Honor comes home to find a letter waiting for her from him. She had always been nagging him to write her a "real" letter instead of sending emails. She finally got her wish but ironically, this would be Finn's last communication with Honor. In the letter, he sends a gift of tickets of a favorite singer, Kyra Kelley's farewell concert. The concert is in California, several states away from Texas, but after all that's happened, Honor feels it's imperative to go. Last minute Honor ends up with a tag-along, Rusty, Finn's best-friend before they had a falling out over Finn's enlisting. Rusty and Finn were to attend college together. They both got in on a scholarship playing football until last minute Finn backed out. Honor still doesn't know the reason behind this, but somehow it seems Rusty blamed her.

This story was a combination of putting Honor and Rusty's relationship back together, they were friends as well, and it was about the grief they both share over Finn's death. The road trip they take helps each of them to work these things through. I loved the chemistry we see between Honor and Rusty and how cute it was that they know each other so well, both able to remember embarrassing details of growing up. I liked the growing attraction we get to see build through the story.

The reason behind Finn suddenly withdrawing from his college plans is also brought to light. I have to say, I felt so bad when it came to light. It would be a burden knowing that information, and I wished Finn would've told that person "the why" before he enlisted or before he died.

This story wasn't very long, only 235 pages, but it was very sweet. My only wish is that we had things just a little more wrapped up in the end. You could see where the future was headed, though, and it was a future I hope for.
Profile Image for Pinky.
514 reviews431 followers
September 17, 2015
I am so glad that I read this book, it took me out of my huge reading slump. Do you know how much I hate reading slumps? Anyway, this book was really good, the only problem I had with it was how long it was. I didn't like the ending much either because it was an open ending. I WANT TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT AND I NEED MORE!! This book is really similar to Amy and Roger's Epic Detour, but it does have different characters who are so different from that book.

Honor finds out that her older brother, Finn died in Iraq and was heart-broken. He was the only one who was always there for her and protected her. Then, she receives a letter and it was an old letter sent by Finn that came in late. In this letter, is the last words that Finn ever wrote to Honor and she felt that although he put a joke in it, she was going to make it happen. So she goes on a road trip and Finn's ex-best friend, Rusty tags along. Although Finn was probably joking around, Honor wanted to make what he said come true.

This book was really powerful and goes deep into you feelings and gets you thinking a lot. It's fast-paced and really interesting. Since I was in the mood for a contemporary novel, I picked this book up. And I was so glad I picked it up, it was so perfect for the mood I was in. But there are tiny problems that I had with this book and I already mentioned on of them.

Another problem I had with this book was the character development. I felt like it sped up and the growth of their relationship was just too soon. I really wish this book was a little longer, it would've made this book more realistic. And at some points, although I am enjoying it, I don't like the choices of what Honor does. It bothered me and I wouldn't get over it.

Honor was one of those funny, quirky girls who always rolls their eyes and stuff. She can't get over the fact that her brother died and feels like she is in a nightmare. On the other hand, Rusty is a player, who parties and drinks way too much. I wished that Honor could've told her best friend and her Aunt where she was going before she went because they care about her. I wish she chose to do something else, like tell her Aunt and friend and then leave right away. And Rusty's crazy, but I still like him, he made me laugh so many times. Near the end of the book, it felt like Honor forgot about Wyatt or something, or was it just me?

The plot was really different and crazy all at the same time, but I loved it. It was perfect pacing and had the perfect places that they would stop at. I wish they showed actual flashbacks of Honor and her brother because I really want to get to know him. Finn seems like an interesting character who is so nice and caring.

I highly recommend this book, if you want something like Amy and Roger's Epic Detour. It's really good but prepare for an open ending, where you decide how the book ends. :)
Profile Image for Keertana.
1,127 reviews2,172 followers
June 30, 2012
In Honor is one of those confusing books that you’re not sure whether or not to read simply because of all the mixed reviews. You do know for sure though that you’ll either wind up being one of those people who love it or one of those people who hate it. Unfortunately, I find myself in the latter position. For some reason, I expected In Honor to be very similar to Saving June. Both novels were centered around a road trip and at the core of their stories was a girl who had just lost a sibling. Yet, where Saving June was beautiful, moving, and poignant, In Honor was anything but.

For Honor, whose parents were killed when she was young, her older brother Finn is all she is has. When Finn dies in Iraq, leaving Honor two tickets to a Kyra Kelley concert, she feels an indescribable urge to attend this concert and fulfill what seems to have been her brother’s last wish. Yet, what Honor doesn’t expect is for her brother’s ex-best friend Rusty to join her. Together, the two must embark on a journey across the dusty plains of the country and struggle to come to terms not only with Finn’s death, but with their own messed up lives as well.

In all honesty, I don’t think this book can be described as a “road trip” novel at all. When I think of road trips, I think of stopping at random places, visiting unknown places, and getting involved with crazy groups. However, the “road trip” in In Honor revolves around the budding romance between Rusty and Honor. In fact, they simply end up driving around, getting caught in a storm, taking off their clothes in the extreme heat, and then chilling at Rusty’s mother’s home – some road trip. Needless to say, I found myself to be rather disappointed by the plot of this story and could not help making constant comparison to Saving June.

The plot of this novel aside, I found myself unable to truly relate with or empathize with Honor. Although I didn’t have a sister who committed suicide like Harper in Saving June, Hannah Harrington made me feel as if I did. Jessi Kirby however, was unable to make me even sympathize with her protagonist; much less feel connected to her. If anything, I felt more sympathy for Rusty and what he was suffering as a best friend in some scenes (only, of course, to feel irritated at him later on). I really think I might have enjoyed this book if it had chosen to be unique by narrating this story from Rusty’s POV. His pain, torture, and confusion through losing his best friend somehow felt a whole lot more tangible to me than Honor’s grief.

Still, I think the main problem I had with this novel all comes boiling down to its love story. In all honesty, I wish it wasn’t even there. I love romances, but this one felt strange, awkward, and all too forced. Furthermore, I think it would have been able to make a powerful message if Rusty and Honor had worked through their grief together as friends opposed to falling in love and thinking about how hot the other person was. I feel as if this came up so much that I just felt annoyed with the characters and the plot and this book in general.

That being said, I think this story definitely had a lot of potential, but its execution ultimately fell flat. Perhaps I would have enjoyed this book more if it hadn’t reminded me of Saving June as much and inspired so many comparisons with it for me. Nevertheless, the fact remains that In Honor was not a book I could bring myself to fall in love with like many other readers. It was simply too cute, too cheesy, and lacked the type of depth and closure that I was expecting from it. If anyone is looking for a good novel about coping with grief, coming to terms with death, and falling in love, I’d recommend Saving June and simply skip this one – it just doesn’t compare.

You can read this review and more on Ivy Book Bindings
Profile Image for Arlene.
1,164 reviews639 followers
July 4, 2012
During the Summer Luvin' Tour, Kirby read an excerpt of this novel and upon hearing that it involved a road trip I was all sorts of excited. However, I was quickly grounded when I discovered why Honor, the protag, embarks on this road trip in the first place. See, Honor should be planning for the most exciting time of her life… her freshmen year in college; however she is dealt a devastating blow when she learns that her brother is killed while fighting in Iraq. Hours after her brother’s funeral, she opens a letter that Finn sent to her before he died. In the letter she finds two tickets to a farewell concert for one of her favorite musicians and his wish to her is that she have the time of her life. So, she takes off from Texas to California with the unwanted company of Finn’s best friend Rusty. Along the way, they attempt to find a way to move passed the pain of losing Finn and mending their once close friendship while they journey toward a new chapter in their lives.

In Honor is my first experience with Kirby’s writing; and I have to say it had a quiet strength about it that I really enjoyed. The characters weren’t over the top, the plot was engaging yet surreal, and the flow was constantly moving. Gather these elements in one novel and I’d like to call that impactful. One thing I liked about Kirby is that she doesn’t use excessive descriptors and long flowing paragraphs to get her point across. She keeps her story short and to the point which adds that element of a brief but powerful journey with her characters. Where this novel is light on the romance, it is heavy on self discovery and true heart, which worked perfectly for In Honor.

I have to say I love road trips but more importantly, it was the military service theme that provided the emotional punch I was hoping for. I commend Kirby for taking on this topic that surprisingly not many YA authors attempt. To remind us that there are men and women sacrificing their time and lives to protect our freedom and the luxuries I often take for granted, is a topic I hope more writers incorporate into their contemporary works. So I applaud Kirby enthusiastically for her well written novel that does a great job tackling this topic along with the subjects of friendship, loss, and self-discovery… to do so in such a succinct novel was impressive. Great job!

Song Choice:
In My Remains - Linkin Park

winter haven books
**This review can be found at WinterHaven Books.**
Profile Image for Noelle.
373 reviews247 followers
March 16, 2017
Rusty's last name is Riggins and you can't convince me otherwise. And at first--believe it or not--I wasn't sure if that was a good thing. (Sacrilege, I know!) In the beginning Rusty was so close to Tim Riggins of Friday Night Lights fame that I found myself subconsciously gifting Rusty with all of Tim's backstory and hard-earned character development. About a third into the book I realized that Rusty had hardly any of his own. Let's just say I had a crisis of Rusty faith. Was Rusty just a Tim Riggins ripoff? Was FNL doing all the heavy lifting rather than Kirby? Would readers who hadn't seen FNL even think Rusty was special? Luckily that freakout was premature. In the second half, character separation occurred and Rusty, while still being a tribute to the incomparable Riggins, got some much welcomed character growth of his own. Rusty may share the same DNA pool as Tim Riggins (and my mental picture of him definitely proves that haha) but he's a force all his own.

Really quickly: I love the maturity of Kirby's writing. Also I loved the choice she made with where to leave Honor and Rusty.

Probably around a 3.5 star book for me.
Texas forever.
Profile Image for Cara.
279 reviews720 followers
June 28, 2012
I fully expected to fall head over heels for this book. I mean a road trip with a crazy destination? Two people who are trying to work out their grief with the background of southwest America? Sounds golden and it was in some aspects. But I'm sorry guys there was some stuff I couldn't ignore.

Ok so what's this book about? Honor's brother has passed away. He enlisted in the Marine Corp fresh out of high school and a year later he dies in the Iraq war. Honor is getting ready to go to the college of her dreams and try to move on. But it's going to be difficult. Her brother, Finn, was basically the person who could always make her feel safe. Their parents died in a car crash when they were really young and since then they were taken care of by their aunt. So the last link to her old life and the person who has always been there for her is gone, but he had one last request. One that was a joke really but Honor clings onto it and decides to go take on a road trip in his old Chevy Impala, from Texas to California, to fulfill his request. There is a wrinkle in her plan though, Rusty. Rusty was Finn's ex-best friend but he passes out in the car, so Honor has to bring him along. It will be interesting to say the least but also enlightening.

After that way too long synopsis (sorry about that) it sounds like it would be awesome right? Well I had some problems with it. The first is Rusty. He has this charisma and by the end of the book you know he is a good guy. But he has a drinking problem. Now I know this is the way some people deal with grief but from what I gathered he has always been a heavy drinker. While they are on the trip (if I remember correctly) he drinks every day and at various times. The issue that this is extremely unhealthy wasn't explored and I think that's not right or fair to the character. It actually appears normal in the book, and I know it's not. Then some of the transitions to different scenes didn't seem smooth. I actually felt jostled around but this may because on the road trip things can change drastically. Unfortunately there is one more thing and it happens towards the end. It's the big reveal and I can't go into it without spoiling it for others, but from the information I know it would not be very possible. Not impossible but highly unlikely. That being said I liked the spirit of the gesture.

I know it seems like I didn't like it, but there were some things that were done beautifully. I loved the places they visit, and some of the people they meet. It was nice to see Honor and Rusty share memories of Finn too. From what you hear about Finn, he is the perfect older brother and best friend. For some reason I didn't always believe the chemistry between Honor and Rusty, but I did always believe they cared about each other. I still think Kirby is great at writing, and I was invested enough to want to finish the book. One thing I do want to stress is that I am almost positive that there are other readers out there that will love this book and be able to see past the things that bothered me. Even though I didn't love it I will still read more from Jessi Kirby.

Oh and I think the cover is fabulous and fits the story perfectly.
Profile Image for Eva .
29 reviews3 followers
October 12, 2017
“And I did—love Rusty. I loved him in a way that had everything to do with how our past and our present had come together over the miles of highway we’d traveled, how our back then and our now had led us here, to this tiny point on the map. I closed the space between us with a single step and reached my arms around him—a small gesture to tell him so, and he pulled me in close and rested his chin on my head. Standing there together like that felt right as rain, and I knew that after everything, we’d somehow ended up exactly where we were supposed to be. There was no telling where we might find ourselves down the road, but for the moment it didn’t matter.”

Woooooah ! This book was beautiful. Honestly.
Maybe it’s because the writer has a way of pull you into the story or it’s just the fact that I relate to what the character is going through. Whatever it was, I am really glad I read this book. I lost my brother last year. Admitted he wasn’t my own, a cousin, and I didn’t see him every day of the week. But he still meant a lot to me and I felt like he was one of those people who really understood me. Losing him was very hard, to say the least.

Reading this book made me happy and sad, cry and laugh all at the same time ( sounds cliche huh xD I know ). It made me realize how short and beautiful this life was, all at the same time. I can’t believe i put it off for so long. ( tbh, I cried in the first 3 pages of the book and that must be some crazy record or something even for an emotional person like me xD)

I really liked how the author portrayed Honor’s relationship with her brother. The things they would do for each other without even thinking about the consequences is just downright heartwarming. Even Finn’s and Rusty’s friendship … Wow <3 You don’t really come across those kinds of friendship very often, but when you do its one of the most beautiful thing to have.

One thing I love about the book is that the girl doesn’t end up with the guy, yes there is a possibility in the future but that's not what this book is about. It's about finding yourself. It's about getting lost and taking bizarre decisions and going through with them, it's about letting yourself free and then finding yourself in all the chaos. If they had gotten together I don't think it would have had the impact that it had or that I would have loved it as much.

I definitely recommend this book to everyone. Just read it. Maybe you’ll like it, maybe you won’t. But, I am sure you’ll learn something from it.

Please do comment if you end up reading it or even if you have already read it :)
Profile Image for Tânia.
356 reviews58 followers
July 27, 2016
Am I the only one who made the connection to the TV Show Supernatural? For starters, the author lets us know about these two inseparable friends that are like brothers who enjoy riding in the shiny black 1967 Chevy Impala that Finn worked so hard to put together, and I couldn’t help but associate them with Sam & Dean. And then around chapter nine, Rusty’s driving the car when he pumps up the radio volume and starts singing Wayward Son by Kansas… I know, right?

But moving on, since the similarities end here, and this book has nothing supernatural and it’s very much human. I was trying to put together some words to write a review when I realized that the reason I couldn’t was because I was speechless. Why? First, this is a beautiful book that deals with feelings of loss, grief and sadness as opposed to feelings of happiness and freedom, which is what these two main characters are looking for through the vast deserted roads, with a heat so unbearable that makes our hot (pun intended) Rusty take his clothes off and drive in his underwear, daring Honor (weird name, I know) who’s hesitant but determined to stand up against him and do the same… so, there they go, along the road, almost completely naked… you get the picture, right?

Along the way they live adventures and misadventures ---- watch the sun come up from the bottom of the Blue Hole, treacherous storms, amazing lakes, tequilla night ----, and during this time they find themselves, even though they’ve met all their lives. But there is always that connection between them, Honor’s brother Finn who died tragically in service and the reason they’re headed toward Kyra Kelly’s concert.

And here’s the second reason for why I’m speechless. So, second, because there was something missing in this journey of discovery. I think after a strong beginning, I felt a bit disappointed with the course of the narrative. I didn’t feel too close to the characters, even though I really enjoyed reading about them. I expected a little more expression from Rusty, I mean, I don’t think he ever stands out, more determination from Honor, and… I don’t know… more.

But there's no denying the beauty of the story. The ending was absolutely beautiful, stupid and funny at the same time. Beautiful way to release Finn, stupid moment between Rusty and Honor, because the guy is like a statue, a person tells him she loves him, and he just stands there, tomb like. Speak man! And it’s funny because that last moment alone only in the movies, where everything is wrapped up in a very incongruent but still beautiful way, leaving us with a silly smile on our faces, and going like, Awww, that’s so unbelievably sweet!

And now, let’s take a moment to admire this relic…


Who wouldn’t want to go on a road trip with this beauty? And I mean both of them… this is what power of suggestion does, now I can’t stop picturing Dean in his underwear behind the wheel… resolution of the year, go on a road trip!
Profile Image for Charley Cook.
137 reviews706 followers
September 9, 2017
There was nothing wrong with this book per se but there was no real 'romance' for a romance book and I just feel like I've read this storyline a thousand times
Profile Image for Duanur.
906 reviews59 followers
August 26, 2012
After reading Amy and Roger's Epic Detour and loving every single page of it, I was so excited to read another contemporary romance about a road trip. Then I saw this book on goodreads and I was immediately hooked by the cover. Also I saw that it was about a road trip! I was like, "I.need.this."

I was expecting an adventurous road trip and a cute love story to make me go "awww" But what did I get? A road trip that had NO point what so ever. There was NO cute love at all. I didn't even like the characters. I hated their names. (Seriously, Rusty?! What was her mother thinking?) There was NO dialogue.
Rusty says something bad. She feels like crying but doesn't want to cry in front of him. After 5 pages he apologizes. She tells him that she is glad that he is here.

But wait!

After 20 pages, he AGAIN says something weird and awful. Then it goes on and on..
I couldn't finish the whole book but I've read the end. Well I don't want to spoil anything but here is the thing.


Nothing changes. Rusty AGAIN says something really awful (it's true but the way he says it just makes it worse!) then she realizes that he is right and blaah and blaaah. There were NO gushy love moments, NO "that guy is sooo adorable" moments. NONE.
I don't recommend this. Well I actually liked Finn. Her dead brother. But except for him, i couldn't find anyone likeable.
Profile Image for Siiri (Little Pieces of Imagination).
538 reviews108 followers
July 6, 2015
Last year was pretty good for Jessi Kirby as far as I could see, because so many of my blogging friends adored her novel Golden. I heard nothing short of amazing about that book and everyone was speechless over her well-crafted characters and character-driven plot. I had high expectations for this author’s work, I’m not going to lie. Luckily, it wasn’t disappointment what was waiting ahead of me.

“I can't promise the universe is gonna tell you what to do with your life up there. But if you can keep quiet and listen close enough, for long enough, it may whisper something you need to hear.”

Our main character is Honor who has just lost her brother. We meet her during the service and she is in no way in a good place. While I didn’t know her at all, and perhaps that was the reason I wasn’t as emotional as I could have been, her grief was still hard to read about. You see, Finn wasn’t just Honor’s brother, but her best friend, confidant and her only nuclear family member left. Soon she finds herself on a road trip to California to fulfill Finn’s one last wish and she does it in the company of Rusty—Finn’s ex best friend.

The novel is fairly short—with 235 pages it managed to make me laugh out loud so many times, even though the content was pretty devastating in many ways. Honor has to let go of her grief, become an independent person and is on the verge of starting her life fresh, but in order to do that, she has to close these wounds that hurt her so badly. Rusty is in the same position and together they discover the world like they have never seen it. Their adventures, memories and chemistry made this road trip fun to follow. Watching them re-kindle the friendship they once had was beautiful.

While you may think it seems likely for these two to hit the road to Romanceville, it wasn’t exactly so. Yes, they do have a spark between them, but the maybes of a romance don’t overshadow the true value of this story which is a truly inspirational adventure. There were so many times during the two nights that took me to read this book when I wanted to pack my bag, start the car, invite a few friends and start crafting our own little adventure.

My only criticism is that I wish the ending would have been more wrapped up and gave us a more clear idea where the future will take Honor and Rusty. I would like to think that what Honor said about Rusty going back to all of those things will take place, but you know what? I don’t mind if he doesn’t. So I guess I’m not all that sad about this ending? I don’t know. I’m getting a little confused over here myself. *HELP!!* I’m not a fan of open endings, but I guess it suited this particular story.

It’s the kind of book that foremost makes you think about life, friends, dreams, adventures—all kinds of stuff really. Makes you inspired! I didn’t perhaps fully form such big emotional connections with Honor and Rusty, but they did make me laugh out loud so many times and I’ll take away a bunch of good things from this novel. Jessi Kirby has found a secure place among some of my favorite authors and I can’t wait to check out her other two novels. Good thing I have Golden waiting on my shelf already in all its golden glory :)

Overall rating: 4.4 out of 5.0

More of my reviews can be found my blog.
Profile Image for Kelly.
Author 7 books1,212 followers
June 2, 2012
This was a sweet story about friendship and about loss and grief, but it took quite a while for me to be fully invested in either Honor or Rusty. Much of the beginning and middle of the journey felt like they took too long, whereas parts of the second half of the book sped by (particularly when they get to California).

That said, I'm happy Kirby didn't take the easy way with this story. At about page 100, I thought I had it figured out and knew where it would go. But it didn't. It was in those changes of course where I finally felt like I got to know Honor well. Because the real issue I had with the story was never getting to know Honor. I got to know her via her dead brother and her dead parents and through Rusty and his stories about her (which came through his relationship with her brother). It was, though, in those last few chapters and last few big decisions Honor faces where I really got her and understood her. She was trying to figure herself out, too.

I'm a fan of Kirby's writing, and there are so many smart passages in the story about life and love and they never feel preachy nor saccharine. They fit Honor's voice.

I think this book will appeal to those who liked Morgan Matson's "Amy and Roger's Epic Detour." They tread a lot of similar territory . It's also a very clean read, though it does deal with grief and loss.
Profile Image for Jay.
514 reviews368 followers
January 12, 2016
In Honor was one of those books that I've bought and shelved for over a year. I wanted to read it because it was a road trip novel, but it also revolves around a girl who just lost her brother who was a soldier in Iraq. The book was short, and I really like Honor. Her pain was so raw and real, I couldn't help but cry and tear up every time she did. She ends up going on a road trip to a concert her brother sent her two tickets for before he died, thinking it is a message from the universe and she had to honor her brother by going. Her brother's ex best friend ends up tagging along (unwillingly from Honor's part) and their mutual love for her brother (and his childhood best friend) was just so sad. When they would reminisce or say "I miss him" out of the blue to each other... that just tore me up. I really enjoyed the pacing of the book and how it didn't lose focus of the main plot. I ended up giving it four stars and I will definitely be picking up more books by Jessi Kirby.
Profile Image for Sarah (YA Love).
666 reviews270 followers
May 22, 2012
Review originally posted at Y.A. Love

Have you ever started reading a book and knew right away that you were going to love every single page? That’s how I felt when I started reading In Honor by Jessi Kirby. I can’t explain what about a book wins me over when I have this experience, but I’m happy about it nonetheless. I felt similarly when I read Jessi Kirby’s debut Moonglass as well. Her writing draws me in and doesn’t let go until I’ve finished her book.

I love that In Honor starts with Honor describing taps being played and the 21-gun salute. If you’ve been to a funeral when taps has been played and the salute is given, then it’s easy to relive it while reading someone’s experience. It’s an emotional experience which becomes an emotional reading experience. I don’t have an immediate family member serving, but I have former students serving, I have cousins serving, I’ve had friends serving. I may not know what it feels like to lose a brother in the war, but I can certainly empathize with Honor and Rusty as they navigate through their grief. In Honor is an emotional read, but it’s balanced with love, hope, and humor that many readers will appreciate.

The road trip setting gives In Honor a lighter mood despite the circumstances which I really appreciated because it made the emotional scenes even more powerful. Road trip books are entertaining because characters are forced to interact with one another, given the close quarters, which provides more character development and insight. Honor pretty much wears her heart on her sleeve, but Rusty is harder to read. Honor and Rusty don’t get along very well and the tension is palpable, but there’s something just beneath the surface that lets the reader know that there’s more to Rusty than meets the eye. Besides the fact that I had a character crush on him, I really enjoyed watching his character grow and discovering his secrets as their journey to California progressed. He and Honor are learning more about each other, but they’re also learning about themselves through this entire ordeal.

I don’t know if this makes sense, but reading In Honor made me wish I could either live in Texas or at least visit Texas. I love living in Michigan, so maybe I just wish I could have gone to Texas years ago and met a cute guy like Rusty? I don’t know, but the whole southern atmosphere described was alluring. I have been to Sedona (a pit stop Honor and Rusty have to make), so I know how beautiful it is and really want to make a return visit. More than anything, I think this awkward paragraph just goes to show how well Jessi Kirby created the atmosphere and setting of In Honor. So many elements of this book won me over and made me feel like I was there with Honor and Rusty.

If you take anything from this review, know this: In Honor is a book that will resonate with readers. The characters are dynamic and true and ones you’ll wish you could meet in real life. Jessi Kirby wrote a wonderful debut, but her sophomore novel, In Honor, is even better. Without a doubt, In Honor will be extremely popular in my classroom and I really hope you read it.
Profile Image for Mesa .
150 reviews21 followers
May 20, 2012
I remember seeing/reading exalting reviews for this book from other bloggers, and wanting to read it so badly. So when I finally got my own copy I was static to read it, I even stopped what I was reading to read it. But I’m sad to say, In Honor was a big disappointment for me. Instead of doing review, I thought I’d just list the reasons why I didn’t enjoy this book as much as other bloggers seems to do.

1. I wasn’t able to connect with both characters, Honor and Rusty. I felt for both for losing their loved ones, but other than that I didn’t like them.

2. There is no romance in this book. I saw reviews saying the romance in this book is great, but to be honest I didn’t see any romance in it. The way I see it, Honor’s and Rusty’s relationship is kind of sister/brother relationship. She cares about him, and he cares about her. That’s it. That’s what I got from this book, in the romance aspect of the book. It was deal breaker for me, since I’m huge, huge fan of contemporary.

3. The road trip wasn’t as adventurous as I thought it’d be. I wanted more than a car breaking down in the middle of nowhere. I liked the beginning of their trip, but after 50 or so pages later, the road trip became bickering trip.

4. The ending? What was that? The ending is the only reason why I gave it 2 stars instead of 3. I’ve never read contemporary book that ending I dislike this much. It irritates me. I wanted to know more about what was next for Rusty and Honor. I did not like the ending at all. Well, except the last two pages.

Overall, In Honor wasn’t my cup of tea. If you want to check it out, more power to you. I hope you enjoy it more than I did.
Profile Image for Kristina.
890 reviews19 followers
February 23, 2012
I know that 2012 just started, but I can easily say that In Honor is going to be one of my favorite reads of 2012! This book had everything and left me feeling all warm and fuzzy when it was over. All I want to do is read it again, and then again.

A few days after Honor finds out that her brother Finn has died, she receives a letter from him telling her to live her life. The first thing he wants her to do is go to Kyra Kelley's last concert, which somehow, from a war zone, he was able to score her tickets. The day after his funeral, she sets out in his Impala to drive to California to her show. Right before she leaves, Rusty, her brothers best friend shows up and wants to come with her.

The connection between Rusty and Honor was amazing! They have known each other since they were kids, and you could see how they care about each other and irritate each other at the same time! There feelings were so realistic, and they both loved Finn so much that it was nice that they were both there for each other. My favorite parts was when they were sharing stories about Finn with each other.
Now add these awesome characters on a road trip with excellent writing and you have one of the favorite books of 2012. In Honor has everything I could want in a book. It was funny and had heart. I am so grateful that I was able to score a copy of this wonderful book at ALA. It did not disappoint and I would recommend it to everyone and anyone!
Profile Image for **Nicole.
422 reviews51 followers
July 27, 2017
This was an emotional gut wrenching read for me. Honor has just buried her older brother after being killed in action. After coming home from the funeral she finally decided to open a letter that he had sent her before he died. In it, he included concert tickets and a letter and he told her to have an adventure and to go to the Kyra Kelly concert and tell her about him. Honor is supposed to be leaving for college orientation, and yet all she can think of is honoring her brother, Finn's last wishes and go on a road trip.

Enter Rusty. Finn's long time best friend. They played football togeather and were both giving full rides to the same college to play. But Finn joined the marines and was shipped out..and Honor never understood why. Rusty, as much is grieving for his best friend and the pair set out on a road trip to honor Finn. Along the way, some mishaps occur and even a little bit of growing up, but by the end, Honor learns about the secret her brother kept from her and bother Rusty and Honor learn about grief and love and what's really important in life.

I had tears in my eyes the from the first page and I can say this book really puts a few things in perspective for me it will always be close to my heart. Absolutely loved it!!
Profile Image for Lacey.
271 reviews75 followers
June 3, 2012
First Thoughts:

Wow, I absolutely loved this book; it’s one of those books where you just want to keep on reading till the very last page. It has a lot of the emotions mixed together and I loved how the author was able to take a completely depressing issue and bring life to it; she made it inspirational. I loved reality based stories and this one was no exception, the author’s writing was beautiful, the characters were easy to connect with and the pace was extremely fast…this is one book I won’t ever forget and perhaps I took more from this book than I had ever expected to.


The plot was amazing, it had the perfect pace; just enough slow moments to help the fast moments stay balanced. The concept though isn’t all that original had its fair share of comical and gut-wrenching scenes. The way the author created obstacles for the characters helped the plot become that much more complex and fun to read. I think the best part of the story was when they were at the park…I think that was an essential spot that impacted the main protagonist for the rest of the book. And as for the emotions, there were plenty of scenes where I found myself on the verge of tears, the grief that the author placed upon the characters shoulders was enormous but I’m glad the author was able to really get the reader to see that true emotion. But there were plenty of comical scenes to help bring the reader out of that dark pit, so in overall sense the emotion was perfect, just the right amount of each emotion to create a good reality based story. As far as sub-plots go there were only a few and I wouldn’t even count them as being anything big, they were mostly just problems branching off another character, so in the end it’s mainly just one big conflict that all leads to the same plot. And like I mentioned above the pace was fast so I don’t think there will be any difficulties reading this book quickly. I just really enjoyed the whole story…I liked that things didn’t go the way that I expected them to go, I liked the risks the characters took in this book and mostly I just enjoyed stepping out of my life and seeing someone else’s for a change. So overall I really enjoyed the story and didn’t find anything wrong with the plot.


Yes there was a little romance but not in the way that you would think. This story isn’t about love and the need of finding your soul mate. This story is about re-discovering yourself and taking your first steps of independence. And really the romance that is in this story is perfect and right in every way and the way it ends up is not what you expected and it kind of leaves you wondering well, what happens next? So overall this was not the main conflict of the story and I found it to fit in just at the right moments.


I really loved Honor, I instantly connected with her, and her grief was instantly mine. She just had this aura that the author portrayed that really allowed me to understand her; to really be her. She was craftily created and I loved that she wasn’t perfect; she had flaws. As far as Rusty he definitely made a remember-able first appearance and I instantly liked him, he had this way about him that allowed me to see through his false façade and see the real Rusty. And as far as her brother Finn he technically never made a physical appearance in the book (duh!) but I felt his presence through Honor and I thought it was really cool to experience that. As far as some of the other minor characters they were all necessarily and precisely placed, loved every single one of them. So overall the characters were really easy to connect with and made the story come to life.

Transformation of the Character:

There was a really beautiful transformation that took place; it was gradual and very subtle. I really enjoyed seeing the process and seeing a very vulnerable character go through several obstacles until finally she was someone new; some different from who we met in the beginning of the book. There were actually two transformations and I really thought both were really beautiful and played out just right…I don’t want to go into details in chance of ruining the book for you but just take my word for it that the transformations did not feel fake or rushed.


I really enjoyed the way this author chose to describe each little detail of scenery without actually going into much detail, does that make sense? The landscape was beautifully described, I really felt like I was there traveling with Honor and seeing the country through her eyes. The best described scene no doubt had to be the sunrise at the park…it was so beautifully written and I’ll never ever forget that scene…as far as the amount of description I didn’t think there was too much or not enough, it seemed just the right amount for this story. The author really allowed the senses to take bloom and allow the reader to really get the full experience a book can offer. She was able to take a mundane image and turn into something meaningful…it’s not something you get to see in every book. I really enjoyed the description and believed it to be a strong point in this book. And as far as dialogue I felt that it was a little awkward at times but overall seemed to fit into each scene just right.


The author chose to write in first person and in only one POV. The choice she made fit just right with this story, we were really able to get inside Honor’s head and understand each line of thinking which better explained some of her awkward and comical scenes. As far as the writing itself it was beautiful and smooth, it wasn’t anything that made me stumble or make me go back to previous pages…no this was an easy and fast paced book. This book was really hard to put down, I just kept wanting to read more…it was that good. So overall I enjoyed the authors writing and choice of POV, it really added to the story.

Quote of the book:

“Suspended as we were, with no horizon line or landscape or anything else to draw a separation between the water and sky, I pictured us up there with the stars. Another story written in tiny lights.”

Goodreads Summary:

Hours after her brother’s military funeral, Honor opens the last letter Finn ever sent. In her grief, she interprets his note as a final request and spontaneously decides to go to California to fulfill it.

Honor gets as far as the driveway before running into Rusty, Finn’s best friend since third grade and his polar opposite. She hasn’t seen Rusty in ages, but it’s obvious he is as arrogant and stubborn as ever—not to mention drop-dead gorgeous. Despite Honor’s better judgment, the two set off together on a voyage from Texas to California. Along the way, they find small and sometimes surprising ways to ease their shared loss and honor Finn’s memory—but when shocking truths are revealed at the end of the road, will either of them be able to cope with the consequences?

Last Thoughts:

I would recommend this to fans of realistic type books and to any of you who have lost a loved one and had to rediscover yourself because of it. This was truly an inspirational and emotional story. I found it to beautifully written and paced just right. I would definitely read more by this author and recommend her to anyone willing to listen. This had definitely become a book I will hold dear to my heart.
Profile Image for Lea.
112 reviews502 followers
May 22, 2012
In Honor was a really good summer read that was not only fun and entertaining, but also heartfelt and able to deal with difficult real-life issues in a very honest and straight-forward way. I think my favorite thing about this book was that it was so refreshingly realistic and the characters were very easy to relate to.

Honor has just graduated from high school-- and gone through her brother's funeral after finding out that he was killed in combat while fighting in the Middle East. All of a sudden, Honor's world just seems to be crashing down around her. All her plans for the future become blurry in the midst of her pain and grief at losing the guy she looked up to more than anyone else in the world. Honor's parents both died when she was young and her older brother Finn was her hero. To make things even more difficult, she receives a late letter from Finn 3 days after she learns of his death-- and in that letter are the last words she'll ever hear from him. With her future stretching out before her, Honor must learn to find peace after tragedy and move on-- because after all,  life will move on with or without her.

Now after reading a premise like that, you might be thinking to yourself, well this doesn't sound like it's going to be a very fun or uplifting kind of read-- in fact, it sort of sounds down-right depressing! But Jessi was able to take a very painful topic and turn it into a learning experience for her main character, while also giving hope to the story and even some humor.

Honor as the main character was so easy to relate to, mainly because we really get to see inside her head and experience everything that she's going through. I definitely liked how reflective the story was-- I think in some books you want to have lots of action, but in this book it was just nice to read from a more emotional and reflective point of view. The reader can see how Honor deals with the loss of her brother and how she's able to come to peace about it-- as much as a person really can in that kind of situation-- while gaining the strength and maturity to move forward. I thought that that was very inspiring.

I also loved how we get to know Finn though Honor's memories of him. By the end of this book, you feel like you know the brother and friend that Finn was, and his character was very multi-dimensional despite him not ever being totally present in the story. At the end, we find out about the sacrifice he made out of love for his little sister, and you just can't help but love this guy who did everything he could to protect Honor.

Rusty-- Finn's best friend who follows Honor on her road-trip adventure that was brought on by Finn's last letter-- was a more difficult character to like. He definitely had his own personal demons-- drinking heavily and frequently being one of them-- that left me feeling a bit uneasy about him. He and Honor develop a kind of love-hate relationship, and even though I can sort of understand Honor's eventual attraction to him, a lot of his behavior just really bothered me. Rusty, despite drinking too much and giving Honor a hard time, is still her only close connection to her brother. With Rusty, she has someone who can truly empathize with her and mourn the loss of someone she loved and depended on.

But guess what! There is NO insta-love in this book, and even by the end of the story, things are left on a much more realistic note than a lot of other YA books. So even though Rusty wasn't my favorite guy ever, I think that Honor's relationship with him was much more true-to-life than other ones I've read about. I think you could agree that, even though it wasn't perfect, it wasn't ridiculously unrealistic either.

Just a warning, there is A LOT of drinking in this book. So if you don't really like that kind of thing in YA books, then it might bother you here. There's even a "tequila night" thrown in towards the end, where I could literally feel Honor's hang-over afterwards. The author doesn't glorify drinking or anything, but she doesn't skirt around it either because-- well, duh, a lot of teens drink! So she keeps it real, even the ugly bits like hang-overs.

The end of the story was totally unexpected and I couldn't even believe what was happening at first. But since life is unexpected and I think the author was trying to stay as true to life as possible, it made sense to have such a crazy ending. Also, it ends on a hopeful note that life does go on even after something horrible has happened, and you will learn to laugh again and be happy even if you feel like you never could again.

In Honor was an awesome coming-of-age kind of story. In taking the road-trip with Rusty, Honor gains some closure about the loss of her brother, and even though she'll never be the same carefree, innocent girl ever again, she gains maturity and strength from the experience. The whole road-trip aspect of this book made this the perfect summer read for me, and I would definitely recommend it for your summer reading lists as well!

~Lea @ LC's Adventures in Libraryland
Profile Image for Mei.
265 reviews160 followers
October 22, 2014
"We were a constellation put in the sky-- two people holding hands, floating peacefully above everything else, in a beautiful, perfect moment."

Honor's brother Finn died in Iraq, so now she is consumed with grief. Their parents died in a car accident when she was just a baby, and her aunt takes care of her and Finn ever since. So when a late letter from Finn arrives with two concert tickets from Kyra Kelley, her favourite singer, she decides to go to California to see her and tell her about her brother, as a form of final wish. But someone unexpected comes along—Rusty, his's ex bestfriend. Ever since Finn changed his course of plans of college and football and going to the marines instead, the fallout between the two intensified. Rusty's drunk, and Honor has no choice but to take him along.

This book had a lot of potential, believe me, and my experience with Jessi Kirby with Golden was nothing but great, except for the ending that was too perfect and a little impossible. In Honor has really good writing and prose, too, but the ending of it was too perfect, and impossible, again, but that's not what the big deal of why this book just felt okay to me in entirety.

It was probably the high expectations, but nevertheless the characters didn't impress me or make me attached to them. I actually thought this is going to sound like a New Adult from the looks of it—a girl and a guy sharing grief. But there was VERY limited romance, and while I do like more of it because honestly, I felt more connection and sympathy towards Rusty, but I was still overall okay with it, a summer road trip with a good-looking guy and taking off your clothes because of the heat and all it took was one kiss was just unbelievable. I mean, come on, that's it? While there was no instalove, all throughout the novel it is obvious both are lusting over each other but continually denies it, and it was really annoying reading about people lusting in the car. Anyway, Honor was an immature character. I liked Rusty more because he was just genuine and sincere.

I loved the road-trip aspect though—the scuba-diving, swimming, the cliffs, the desert, because it perfectly captures the summer feel—but it didn't really make it exciting when they stayed a bit longer at Rusty's mom's house. I did enjoy the universe adventure with Bru, though it was making me cringe because of the beliefs. No offense meant, it just seemed weird to me, and well, I'm a Christian. Anyway, it lessened the 'road-trip-ness' of it and I lost interest a bit.

The ending was a little open, and I wish I could've seen participation of Lilah or Gina, and the airport incident was really unbelievable, I really cannot deny my eyebrows raising at the mention of it, even though it was just a few sentences.

I'm still interested in reading Jessi Kirby's Moonglass and her new book coming out on 2015 (Things We Know by Heart), though.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 738 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.