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Road Tripped

3.26  ·  Rating details ·  167 ratings  ·  45 reviews
Steven Gerald Gabel—a.k.a. Stiggy—needs to get out of Minnesota. His father recently took his own life, his mother is a shell of the person she used to be, and his sort-of-girlfriend ghosted him and skipped town. What does he have left to stick around for? Armed with his mom’s credit card and a tourist map of Great River Road, Stiggy sets off in his dad’s car.

The only prob
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published May 14th 2019 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Average rating 3.26  · 
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 ·  167 ratings  ·  45 reviews

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Book Hunter
Sep 07, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult-read
This is a story of a teenage boy on a road trip through Minnesota. The trip comes about after his father's suicide and after his girlfriend has dumped him. I didn't find anything insightful in this book. The main character was unlikable and I wasn't even routing for him to change.. The road trip had no destination, no motive.. he just drove around aimlessly. As for plot, nothing did happen in this story. For a half the book we were along for a frankly boring road trip, and for another half - fla ...more
Oct 28, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019

Roadtripped by Pete Hautman is about a crazy kid named Stiggy. He doesn’t have the best life but decides to take a crazy trip to find his ex girlfriend. She decided to ghost him and moving so he wants to figure out why. This story takes a ton of turns where you meet a crazy amount of characters. Each one crazier than the next. This wasn’t one of my favorites but it wasn’t the worst. ⁣
Robin Tobin (On the back porch reading)
Nov 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, ya
Adventurous little road trip full of figuring out life..... Great YA Read...
May 06, 2019 rated it did not like it
Thanks so much to Simon and Schuster and Netgalley for providing me with an ARC of this book!

*long sigh* I really thought this was going somewhere. I really really did.

Road Tripped follows Stiggy, your average, (and I mean REALLY average), teenage boy on a seemingly aimless trip through the American Midwest. The trip comes about after his father's suicide, which has disrupted his relationship with his mother, and after his girlfriend has moved away and not bothered to contact him at all.

May 30, 2019 rated it did not like it’re telling me that Stiggy had to go on a road trip just to figure out that he is an a-hole and that’s why he has no friends?
I don’t think I’ve ever read about a character more unlikeable than Stiggy, the main character in this book. He is rude and ungrateful throughout the entire book. The problem with this is he never seems to learn from it! If this was supposed to show how Stiggy overcame his past grief and struggles and turned it around, it failed miserably. There was absolutely no c
Jul 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2019
Fact: I'm a sucker for road trip stories. And this one starts and ends in Minnesota, which is like my second home. It's written in a very easy style with fast pacing and it deals with a heavy topic without making it feel heavy or depressing. All in all, a good, quick read.
Self absorbed white teen learns a few important lessons about kindness, respect and thinking beyond his own needs while road tripping.

Difficult but important self growth.
K.E. Woodruff
Sep 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Road Tripped is a complex story of suicide, anger, and self-discovery. The plot is told not in a linear sequence, but rather with plenty of flashback scenes mixed in with the present.

Stiggy’s father has recently died and he is trying to move on from that incident. Yet, he also finds himself struggling in school, keeping a civil relationship with his mother, and retaining friends. Within a short time, Stiggy can no longer stand being in his home town and decides to leave.

However, this isn’t just
Jun 25, 2019 rated it it was ok
Road Tripped was a warning to me.
Stiggy was the kind of person who is so un-self-aware that any hinting of a flaw in him confuses him. I do understand how his father played a huge role in his personality, but Stiggy's almost out of high school. He has no reason to lash out at people, and he's definitely old enough to have some sort of theory of mind (any psych nerds out there?) He needed help to sort through his feelings, but he went looking for it in the wrong places.
Frankly, I'm not surprised
Jun 13, 2019 rated it did not like it
The only reason I did not DNF this book was because I liked the format and the writing style. But the overarching feeling I had while reading this book was three things. First, I hate the names he gave them, what kind of name is Stiggy? Second, why was this written? Third, how is this character not an irredeemable jerk? Beyond the plodding plot and nonsensical endpoint the story was a generic angsty White boy who cannot understand that he is the problem. It included so many problematic elements ...more
May 28, 2019 rated it it was ok
Just another generic, boring, coming of age story for another angsty, middle class white boy who gets mad when his goth girlfriend dumps him. The ending was diasatisfying. Reading this book was like eating unseasoned meat.
May 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
I listened to a recording of this book for the Arizona Talking Book library in order to rate it for sex, language, and violence. It kept my attention. I definitely felt a sense of dread during specific parts of the book where I, as the audience, muttered things like..."nope, don't do that 'Stiggy.'" ,With palpable feelings in my gut, I found myself putting off other things to continue on.

Stiggy takes a journey in his father's former car, listening to his father's eclectic music, and handling co
Aug 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: contemporary
I wanted to like this book. I really did. But, alas, this book was not good.

I think the biggest problem is the main character. He's an asshole. Admittedly, the author is very clearly aware of this and it's the hinge of Stiggy's(ugg, that name still annoys me) arc. However, there is not much of an arc. For over half the book, we're along for Stiggy's frankly boring road trip and flashbacks to what lead to him going on this trip in the first place. While the flashbacks are much more interesting,
Sep 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Stiggy is on the road. In his dad's car, with his mom's credit card, $400 in cash, and a lot on his mind, Stiggy is looking forward to going somewhere. Anywhere. A whole summer after his father committed suicide, and a whole summer spent with a girl named Gaia, a whole summer abandoning his only sort-of-friend, Garf. After that summer, Stiggy tried to go back to school, but junior year did not interest him in the least. Gaia has mysteriously dumped him and moved away, and that seems to be the br ...more
Samantha (WLABB)
May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019, arcs, ya
Rating: 3.5 Stars

Stiggy believed he was an a-hole magnet. He just attracted negative people and negative attention, or so he thought. An impromptu road trip took him away from his hometown, and gave him the space to reflect on his father's death, the demise of all his relationships, and himself.

I had an interesting relationship with Stiggy. He was very self absorbed, way too cynical for someone so young, and pretty much unlikable. He also often thwarted any kindness by lashing out. I think that
Jun 17, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya-suicide
It has been a long time, maybe decades, maybe never, since I read a book with a protagonist more unlikeable than Stiggy. I read so many books that are inspiring and that center characters with resilience and empathy that reading Road Tripped was an unpleasant splash in the face of reality that we are surrounded by so many people like Stiggy who lack empathy, self-awareness, any ability to see another person's perspective, and basic human decency.

I reserved Road Tripped because of an interest in
Jul 09, 2020 rated it it was ok
Road Tripped, by Pete Hautman, follows a young damaged guy named Stiggy, but when Stiggy decides to run away taking with him only his newly deceased dads car he finds himself grappling with the truth of his past and the hardships of the future. While I understand the meaning behind this story and what it stands for metaphorically in relation to finding yourself and growing, I just thought this particular stories plot was a playoff of too many other things. Which is kind of sad because some of th ...more
Sandra Porter
Jul 30, 2019 rated it it was ok
YA, relationships and why they go bad
If you know me, you know I am love a good"road trip" book. Although it has a high rating I found the main character, Stiggy, very unlikeable. I mean that is what the author wants, but I wasn't even routing for him to change. Stiggy's Dad has committed suicide, his girlfriend has left him, and his best friend, Garf (who Stiggy treats unkindly) doesn't want to communicate with him anymore. So he goes on a road trip to "find" himself, or try to run away from all
Mrs. Kenyon
Apr 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-audiobooks
Stiggy’s life seems to be in a downward spiral and he just feels the need to get out town. His father committed suicide a few months before, his mother is walking around in a fog and his girlfriend has left to stay with a friend. Stiggy takes his mom’s credit card and his father’s Mustang and decides to drive the Great River Road. He quickly finds out that life on his own is not any better than life at home and his road trip changes in ways he never expected.

Road Tripped is a stand-alone coming
2.5 *'s

I have to admit that I was really looking forward to diving in to this coming of age journey set to the backdrop of the Great River Road. Unfortunately, I was not impressed - at all. I have an easier time delving into a story when I actually like a character and I absolutely could not stand Stiggy. He's a jerk, a straight-up, "everything in the world revolves around what I want/need," jerk without a single redeeming quality that I could find. He's inconsiderate and flat-out rude to EVERYO
Oscar Barasz
Jun 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book overall, but you have to kind of make yourself finish it. It’s a story about an outcast kid who goes on a road trip to find himself. The story is great overall, but our main character “Stiggy” is extremely unlikable start to finish. The whole idea is that he was raised in a family with a dad who had anger issues. His dad kills himself and you assume as the reader that that’s why Stiggy is such a prick to everyone he meets. You assume that during his “road trip” he’d learn to ...more
Great read. A) I am a very hard sell for road trip novels... but this one was more than tolerable. Alternating flashback chapters really helped. Also the absence of a soon-to-be soulmate road trip buddy. B) I don’t know if I have ever met a guy like Stiggy in YA... but BOY HAVE I MET THIS GUY IN REAL LIFE. The kind of guy who complains to the cashier when he doesn’t like how his smoothie tastes because “it’s my duty as a consumer to let them know their product sucks.” He’s not likeable by any se ...more
Nov 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
TW: mentions of suicide

I wasn’t a big fan of this, or the main character. But it wasn’t terrible!

I liked how the main character was real, and expressed his emotions (tho not in a particularly good way), and all the adventures he went on. But other than that, this book didn’t particularly resonate with me? I didn’t feel a lot of feelings and I wasn’t exactly cheering on the main character. I wasn’t feeling this one.

The main character was the main problem. He was a jerk. Short and sweet. I felt
Dec 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Stiggy's life isn't going well right now. His father recently committed suicide and he learned that he suffered from depression, something no one ever told him. His mother isn't herself. Stiggy's girlfriend just moved and ghosted him. He doesn't understand why. Miserable, he decides to leave town. He takes his father's car and starts driving, without a real destination in mind. Along the way, he meets a variety of people, some good, some not. He begins to wonder if he attracts the awful people a ...more
Amy Hautman Bates
Jun 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a wild ride! I couldn’t put this story down until I knew if Stiggy landed on his feet (or not). Angry, sad, lonely, sensitive Stiggy, having to sort out all kinds of big important things like love and loss, finds himself thinking “I don’t want to die. But I wouldn’t mind being dead for a while.” Hope and desperation at the exact same time. Hautman is brilliant at putting those multi-layered emotional experiences into words. I think I’ll read "Road Tripped" again, tonight.
Amy Hearst
May 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
I loved this book. I’m a huge fan of Pete and he did not disappoint. I am the mother of a teenage son and this book helped me in a funny way to understand how difficult it is for teenage boys to express themselves. I laughed pretty hard at a few parts too. This is a great book for teens - it has nature themes but a main character with few words and a big heart.
Shanya // unrevealed reader
Honestly, this book is getting three stars because of how much I enjoyed the chapters being song titles. It honestly was like I was on the road with Stiggy, with the windows rolled down, arm hanging in the wind, and classic tunes playing through the speakers. It felt like an adventure.

But the background stories fell short and so did the ending.
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoy books like this. I read the first couple chapters with my eight-year-old brother, censoring a lot of the cursing, and he also enjoyed the way things tied together. I love introspection and traveling in books, so putting them together like this was really awesome. Good find for my local library’s YA new release section!
Nov 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
Moral of the story: if everyone you meet seems like as asshole, maybe the asshole is you. You feel for Siggy, know he’s gotta be depressed, but he’s definitely not sympathetic. He doesn’t really have an a-ha moment as much as you might want him to. The characters he meets are pretty amusing in their own ways. Shout out to KC, Columbia, Prairie Village and Brookside!
Erin Kelley
Jan 25, 2020 rated it it was ok
I don't get this book. The main character was angry and sulky and it didn't really feel like he changed all that much? Even though he had this big road trip that was full of things happening it also felt like nothing happened? This book made me feel pissed off, sad, and aimless. I know that's because it was what Stiggy was feeling but, man, I don't wanna feel that way.
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Pete Hautman is the author of Godless, which won the National Book Award, and many other critically acclaimed books for teens and adults, including Blank Confession, All-In, Rash, No Limit, and Invisible. Mr. Was was nominated for an Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America. Pete lives in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Visit him at

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