Two Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt



For a while, Jordan and Courtney were the unlikely  “it” couple in High School.  For a while things were going well, and for a while they even looked like they were going to make it, even planning to go to the same college.  And it was working.

For a while…

Then Jordan meets a girl on the internet and suddenly, Courtney is dumped. 

Two weeks later, the college road trip Jordan and Courtney had planned is happening and since no other arrangements had been planned, the two are forced back together for the drive across country for orientation.  Courtney is hurt and doing her best to hide it, and most surprising of all, Jordan is struggling with deep pain because he does still love Courtney, and he never wanted to break up…

Jordan has a secret one that is ripping him apart and it has everything to do with why they broke up and nothing to do with another girl (and no for you quick thinkers out there, it doesn’t have to do with another boy either. 😉 )  Jordan has been forced to break it off with Courtney and if he told her… she would hate him…. and that, as painful as this is, would even be worse.




Overall I really liked Two Way Street.  The storyline was interesting, two teenagers who had been dating and recently broke up but are now on this planned a while back road trip to their college.  The fact that they are put together in the truck for the long drive is interesting enough, the story behind the scenes of why they broke up and only one of them knowing that reason makes it reach for the next level. 

Twists and turns, I like Jordan a lot who is trying to do the right thing but as we all know, at times when we try to spare feelings and “do the right thing” we weave an even bigger mess.  I like Courtney too but not as much because she is a bit too dramatic and a bit too whiny and yes, yes I know… she is a teenager. 

SPOILER- I have to give out a “Creepiest character” award to… (scroll your mouse over the following text if you want to know:  Courtney’s dad.  Seriously – a bit too involved and the over-calling to Jordan is uber controlling in a way not cool way.

The over all story was good, it kept me engaged and it kept me in my car after I had pulled into the garage so I didn’t have to shut it off (always a good sign).  Two things however stand out to me about this read.  One was that for a 2010 book, they constantly mentioned My Space.   My Space?  I have never used My Space.  Does My Space even exist any more?  AND – the overuse of the word : hooking up. Yes, hooking up.  I don’t mind the word, I even get the word, but seriously… I wish I had the book version just so I could count how many times it was used. I would guess close to 100 times and I am not kidding.  “Then they were hoping to hook up”,  “Next thing you knew they were hooking up”, I hope he didn’t expect me to hook up”, “It was cool that they hooked up”… and so on and so on.  It actually became a game in the car for me.  Every time they said it on the audio I would repeat it by yelling “HOOKING UP!”  *please note, I am usually in my car alone so therefore did not give any passengers heart attacks with my spontaneous yelling.

Seriously though, I did enjoy the book and had fun listening to it.


Bonus note:  Why I think the book may be better than the audio:

As an audio lover, I am always bragging up the many virtues of audio.  However, as any audio lover knows, occasionally an audio does not 100% work for all books – it can be book subject, it can be book topic, and yes, it can sometimes be that the narrator was not the best choice for the book.

Narrator Cassandra Morris has a wonderfully youthful and girly voice. If you look at the list of books she narrates I am sure she adds a great voice to them.  For this book however, If anything her voice struck me as a little too young for college age students.  The hardest thing for me was that Cassandra’s voice did not change between the alternating chapters being told from Courtney and Jordan’s perspectives.  The Courtney parts were fine, but when Jordan was being narrated and talking about hooking up (HOOKING UP!) with girls or checking out someones skirt, it would kill my train of thought because I would have to remind myself that this was Jordan… the boy…. .  I had to pay close attention to when the chapters alternated too as occasionally I would miss that we had switched from Courtney to Jordan and suddenly the conversation would throw me again. 



I added this audio review to the fun meme at Devourer of Books:

9 thoughts on “Two Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt

  1. I really hate when certain words are overused in a book, whether it’s a term like “hooking up,” or an overly used adjective. These things can kill my book enjoyment big time.

    As for My Space, I think it was still around in 2010, but almost everyone I knew had migrated to Facebook by then and deactivated their My Space accounts, which, in my opinion, were not that user friendly.

    1. I am not sure if I have ever noticed an overuse of a word before Laurel but this time it was so much I kept thinking why do they keep saying that, and it was a general use of hooking up – hand holding, kissing, going out…

      They do not mention Facebook at all, the many mentions of My Space made me look at what year the book came out. I was surprised to see 2010. That would be like writing a book now about walking across the room to turn on the tv. 😛

  2. And so embarrassing when you use the phrase ‘hooking up’ to plan a meeting and you don’t mean it *THAT* way… 😛
    My current read keeps telling me about the green trees and the green fields and that “she is wearing a green dress”. Enough green already!!

  3. Repetition of a phrase is more noticeable on audio, I think. In Lee Child’s Jack Reacher series, I constantly notice “Reacher said nothing” during the dialogue portions. (Jack Reacher is a man of few words and knows his interrogation techniques!)

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