Eighty Days to Elsewhere – Releases August 11, 2020
““The Amazing Race” meets Around the World in 80 Days as a woman desperate to save her family bookstore falls for her competition.
Born and raised in New York City, Ramona Keene dreams of attending photography school and traveling to Paris, but her reality never quite catches up with her imagination. Instead, she works at her uncles’ quaint bookstore, where the tea is plentiful and all the adventures are between the covers of secondhand books. But when the new landlord arrives with his Evil Nephew in tow, Romy’s quiet life comes crashing down. He plans to triple the rent, something her uncles can’t afford.
In order to earn the money to help save the bookstore, Romy applies for a job at ExLibris Expeditions, a company that re-creates literary journeys. Romy snags the oddest internship ever: retrace Phileas Fogg’s journey from Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days and plan a suitable, contemporary adventure for a client. The task is close to impossible; sticking to the original route means no commercial aircraft permitted, and she’s got a lot less than eighty days to work with. Shaking off her fear of leaving home, Romy takes on the challenge, only to discover she’s got competition. Worse, Dominic Madison turns out to be the – unfortunately hot – nephew of her family’s worst enemy.
Can Romy win the race and circle the globe in time to save the bookstore? And what happens when she starts to fall for the very person who may just be the death of her dreams?” – Goodreads
WHAT I LIKED
Full disclosure, I requested this one on Netgalley because of the cover. So cute, right? It’s a modern day spin on Around the World in 80 Days, which I admittedly have never read and knew very little about. I did look up a summary to familiarize myself a little bit, when I was about halfway through this book.
Romy’s gay uncles (and bookstore owners) are divine. They’re such good background characters, and I love the relationship they have with her. Romy, herself, is an alright MC. We don’t get a ton of her background story, just that she has recently been dumped and she works and lives in her uncles’ used bookstore. She’s using her journey for employment and self-exploration. There are a lot of references to Eat, Pray, Love, but that’s just not my jam, so I didn’t get it and had to look that up as well. Romy’s trying to be more adventurous, spontaneous, and problem-solving. Her adventures are entertaining, as she experiences a lot of bumps along the way.
WHAT I DID NOT LIKE
It didn’t constantly hold my attention. Some of the locations and experiences had too much explanation, and I found myself skim-reading pages, as it moved slow, despite the quick travel that was happening. The ending was also a b rushed, comparatively to the pacing of the rest of the story. This book is cute and quirky and adventurous, but not addictive. I liked it but didn’t devour it. I’m always thankful for an ARC, and do recommend this to people who are looking for a low-stress read!