This is one of the most misleading covers I have seen to date. The cover says cheery and happy tale held within, does it not? It definitely doesn't say angsty and brooding male narrator held within now does it?? But that is what you get, it rather confuses the mental impulses of the brain.
The story is based around Colby and his best friend/love interest Bev. They plan to tour Europe after high school and see where life takes them after that. Well Bev applies to college without Colby's knowledge, all the while Colby has applied nowhere and is sure they are going to Europe. Well Bev finally breaks the news that she is going to college and not to Europe and Colby spends the entire book trying to come to terms with this and find out why Bev decided against their plans.
The book only takes place over a few days time but the amount of brooding Colby went through is enough for weeks. It was difficult to be stuck in Colby's head as he continually wallowed in self pity about not going to Europe and losing his potential flame. What really interferes with the the story is the fact that Bev does not seem all that great, even in Colby's view and stories of her. Bev is so entirely all over the place and lost that you wonder how Colby has managed to miss it for this long.
All of the characters are lost or attempting to find themselves in the book. All of them, even the background characters, are suffering in some way. And even at the end little is resolved and I wonder if anyone ever truly found themselves or even what the point of it all was. (Such as, was the tattoo search really necessary? No.) I'm convinced that the cover is happy-go-lucky in order to counteract the depressive moods within.
With all that said the book is still written well and you do come to like some of the characters. It also vividly brings to life the time period after high school that is full of awkward and unsure moments about the life ahead. Even though little felt resolved in the end, I still sorta-kinda enjoyed the ride so 3 stars.