Celia on the Run by Sarah Mandell

Nick Novaczek is a cautious soul, a 17-year old with a boring life, a predictable future, and a quiet thirst for danger. On the eve of his beloved grandmother's funeral, danger finds him by the motel swimming pool. Her name is Celia and she's everything he's not. This foul-mouthed beauty is hitchhiking across the country to make amends with her estranged father and doesn't carry an ounce of fear or hesitation in her tattered suitcase. She's bad news all around, but for a rule-follower like Nick, she's intoxicating.

Twenty-four hours after speaking to Celia for the very first time, following one extremely lucky night, Nick is hopelessly hooked and "borrows" his parents' car to join her cross-country mission, even though her story is full of holes. It's the mistake he's been waiting his whole life to make. Together, they dodge a train, jump off a bridge, and scam everyone in their path. Nick is blossoming into a teenage fugitive, just like Celia, and he's never been happier. She may not be who she says she is, but she's got his vulnerable heart.

After weeks of detours, with hundreds of miles left to go, their wild adventure starts to unravel. The money dries up, Celia's dark secrets begin to surface, and it's clear they both want vastly different things out of this partnership. Celia is all about no strings attached and severing whatever they may have between them once they reach their destination, while Nick is head over heels in love and wanting a future with the girl in his passenger seat. They seem to reach a new low on a daily basis, but she won't turn back, no matter how desperate things get. After all, this is her trip and Nick is just the driver. Celia's got a charming smile to pay her way, a willing accomplice, a hidden agenda, and an endless supply of lies. Not to mention a gun.

ebook, 173 pages   Published February 29th 2012 by Untreed Reads 
*Book includes sex, violence, drugs and alcohol use. 
On the eve of his grandmother's funeral. Celia and Nick have crossed paths, she is a runaway traveling across the country to return to her father's house. The book starts off on a very sexual revelation on Nick's part. His grandmother's last words pretty much stating he needs to go get laid, and live life while he's still young. A point is made that his parents have a highly sexual love life after all these years, leading up to Nick watching Celia in the public shower and shortly afterword having her take his virginity. The book literally starts of with a “bang”.

Nick is described to be a straight A student, very soft spoken, nice and predictable boy. But when the tornado that is Celia turns up, it's a ride that he doesn't want to end. Stealing the car and abandoning his parents at the motel, he offers to drive Celia across the country and deliver her home.

Celia on the Run is very much a sexual awakening story as it is a coming of age. There are not a lot of actual sex scenes, and they are not graphic. But there is a constant focus on it and several discussions between the two regarding it. Along the way they end up in situations in which they have to get money for food and gas, and lets just say that Celia is in no way ashamed to use her body as a way to persuade people to give her money. Although not all of their situations are specifically geared toward using sex and flirtation for money. They also have to turn to stealing and lying to make their way.

It is very clear that Nick enamored with Celia and her beauty. At first he is taken with the very carefree life that she is living. She's upfront with him, tells him how it is and warns him of what being around her entails =danger. But she's not about to pass up a free ride with a nice and trustworthy boy.

Celia on the Run is heartbreaking, heart-pounding and shocking story. It begins with a bang, and ends with another. Fast paced and action packed, non-stop adventure.

**** 4 Stars ****

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