#BookReview: Roam by C H Armstrong @C_H_Armstrong

Hi everyone! Today, I have a book review for an author new to me, C H Armstrong >>>

40658160. sy475 About the Book:

Seventeen year-old Abby Lunde and her family are living on the streets. They had a normal life back in Omaha but, thanks to her mother’s awful mistake, they had to leave what little they had behind for a new start in Rochester. Abby tries to be an average teenager—fitting into school, buoyed by dreams of a boyfriend, college and a career in music. But Minnesota winters are unforgiving, and so are many teenagers.Her stepdad promises to put a roof over their heads, but times are tough for everyone and Abby is doing everything she can to keep her shameful secret from her new friends. The divide between rich and poor in high school is painfully obvious, and the stress of never knowing where they’re sleeping or where they’ll find their next meal is taking its toll on the whole family.As secrets are exposed and the hope for a home fades, Abby knows she must trust those around her to help. But will her friends let her down the same way they did back home, or will they rise to the challenge to help them find a normal life?

My Review:


A heartwarming, and at times gut-wrenching, read.

I haven’t read this author before but I’ll definitely be reading more!

‘I HATE THIS TOWN ALREADY.’ … from this assertive opening line, the reader is plunged into the life of 17-year-old Abby, who’s existence has fallen apart in the most spectacular of ways. Right from the get-go this book had me hooked. The characters were so well formed, I felt as though I walked by their sides and lived and breathed the story with them.

Despite a few issues with the over use of unnecessary words such as ‘own’ and telling what’s just been shown in dialogue ‘I interrupt’, etc., as well as overly descriptive dialogue tags such as ‘Trish coos’ and ‘Nick corrects’, the narrative flows smoothly and is well written. I found myself laughing aloud as well as crying full-on tears. Not many books move me in the way this read did. Below are some lines I loved …

‘I’ve always imagined homeless people as unkempt vagrants in rags. What I find, instead, is a collection of people who look like us—normal.’

And …

‘It’s soon clear Mr. Zagan could make puppies on Christmas morning seem dreadful.’

And …

‘She runs a finger over the photo, and a thin layer of dust lifts from its surface.’

As well as wonderful descriptions and emotionally evocative writing, a delightful sense of humour threads throughout the narrative and dialogue. The character interactions are some of the most realistic I’ve come across, and the plot and pacing are well done.

This read covers some important social issues and offers valuable life lessons and insights without getting preachy about it. Roam is a heartwarming, and at times gut-wrenching, read that is sure to move you. It gets a solid five stars from me. Go and read this book!


NOTE ON RATINGS: I consider a 3-star rating a positive review. Picky about which books I give 5 stars to, I reserve this highest rating for the stories I find stunning and which moved me.

4 STARS: I WOULD PULL AN ALL-NIGHTER — Go read this book.
3 STARS: IT WAS GOOD! — An okay read. Didn’t love it. Didn’t hate it.
2 STARS: I MAY HAVE LIKED A FEW THINGS —Lacking in some areas: writing, characterisation, and/or problematic plot lines.
1 STAR: NOT MY CUP OF TEA —Lots of issues with this book.

I’d love to hear what you think of this review. Thanks for stopping by 🙂


For anyone interested, here are the Amazon links …

UK … https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B08R8XRTB2/

US … https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08R8XRTB2/


26 Comments on “#BookReview: Roam by C H Armstrong @C_H_Armstrong

  1. HI Harmony, this sounds like a worthy read. I often think that once you become homeless it is really difficult to keep up your standards which makes it virtually impossible to gain employment.

    • Agreed. And also not having an address to give to potential employers. When I left school, I lived on a rough council estate. I never got one interview. As soon as I moved to a ‘posher’ post code area, I got interviews galore despite my CV (resume) staying the same. So much bias. This is such a fantastic read. Thanks, Robbie 💕🙂

  2. Sounds a powerful read, maybe one a lot of people should read. In this world we’re living in people would be stunned to find that many homeless are ones who once had a home and a life. Hard times are rippling through us all now. Thanks for sharing this great read. I’m adding it. <3 xx

    • So very true, sad to say. And it’s way too easy to lose it all … more so than many people realise. Thanks, Debby 💕🙂

  3. A five star rating and such a glowing review! Harmony, I am definitely going to get this book. Your reviews are always balanced and awesome. ❤️🙂

  4. As a mom of kids who were moved around a lot growing up, I find this premise fascinating. Granted, our moves were because of new jobs, not losing jobs, but I’m still very interested in the mindset of a child adapting to the changes of new schools. That Abby had those concerns on top of her living conditions? It makes it all the more compelling. Thanks for sharing this one, Harmony.

    • So incredibly compelling and moving (if you’ll pardon the pun!). Thanks, Staci 💕🙂

  5. This sounds like a good read, Harmony, and it seems to explore a topic that is all too familiar these days. It doesn’t take much to thrust a family into homelessness. Thanks for the intro to a new-to-me author and book. Great review.

    • So many powerful lines in this awesome read. Thanks, Gwen. Hope you’ve got your breath back! 💕🙂

  6. Hi Harmony.
    It must be good if YOU overlooked errors and awarded 5 stars. On my TBR list.
    Hugs, Sarah x