Title: 100 Days
Author Name: Mimsy Hale
Publication Date & Length: April 7, 2015 – 376 pgs
Jake and Aiden have been friends—and nothing more—since age six. Now college graduates, they take a road trip across the USA, visiting very state in 100 days.
As they start their cross-country odyssey, Jake and Aiden think they have their journey and their futures mapped out. But the road has a funny way of changing course.
How do you tell your best friend you love him?
Jake and Aiden have been best friends since they were five. They have supported each other through everything life has thrown at them and are now ready to embark on a future making films together. Or – they’ll be ready after their trip of a life-time. Together, they will explore 50 states in 100 days in an inherited RV.
Each man is desperately in love with the other, but each worries that he could gain a lover only to lose his best friend.
Hale’s characters are complex and compelling. Both men are very young, but each has been uniquely damaged. The road towards a real relationship is as terrifying as the road towards the rest of their lives after college. I like the fact that neither man is entirely good, or entirely selfless. I love the years of shared history that Hale has wrapped around the men like a fading quilt they are carefully unpicking and re-stitching together.
The road-trip story has been told many times and a careful touch is needed to ensure it doesn’t become a series of ‘and then’ incidents. Most of the time Hale manages to use Jake and Aiden’s personal struggles to keep it fresh.
After such an honest book, the ending felt slightly contrived. Fortunately, the epilogue made up for it.
This is a wonderfully tender coming-of-age story with a sweet romance at its heart.
Because anything really could happen, couldn’t it? What if what happened in Philadelphia wasn’t a total mistake, but simply the prelude to Jake finally listening to what his instincts have been telling him for weeks? What if, what if, what if…
“What are you doing? Come see this!” Aiden calls out.
Jake takes a deep breath and steps out of the shadows. Aiden is silhouetted against the fading sun, the light picking out the auburn in his hair, and as he stretches his arms up over his head, one finger hooked through the woven bracelet he bought earlier, he grins out at the horizon. Jake feels as if he’s watching Aiden through brand new eyes; he knows that there is rescue in those arms. Suddenly he wants to fall into them and hold on until he feels safe.
Aiden turns away from the vista, pushes his sunglasses up on top of his head and looks down at Jake, his eyes sparkling with warmth and light. He leans forward and holds out his hand, and he looks… beautiful.
Mimsy Hale has been a contributing ghostwriter to several bestselling nonfiction books. She is also an established writer in online fan communities, where her stories have hundreds of thousands of reads. 100 Days is her first novel. She lives in Suffolk, England, with her roommate and four cats.