100 Sideways Miles

Andrew Smith. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-4424-4495-9
Smith dives back into the mind of a teenage boy in a story that’s less brutal or apocalyptic than his recent work (readers who know him from Grasshopper Jungle or Winger may keep waiting for the other shoe to drop), but similarly full of existential questions and sexuality run amok. When 16-year-old Finn Easton was a boy, he and his mother were crushed by a falling dead horse in a freak accident—Finn’s mother died, and he broke his back, leaving him with recurring epileptic episodes and a scar on his back. In the present, Finn is navigating relationships with his father, the author of a cult science-fiction novel; his raunchy best friend Cade; and a new girl in town, Julia. Road-trip shenanigans, condom-purchasing embarrassments, drunken parties, and stumbling attempts at first love all factor into the novel, but amid the loopy escapades, Finn’s musings about the universe’s constant dispersal and recycling of atoms, along with his habit for measuring time in the distance the Earth is forever racing around the sun, provide a memorable perspective on human (in)significance. Ages 12–up. Agent: Michael Bourret, Dystel & Goderich Literary Management. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/16/2014
Release date: 09/02/2014
Genre: Children's
Compact Disc - 978-1-4945-1409-9
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Prebound-Glued - 304 pages - 978-0-606-37857-4
Open Ebook - 432 pages - 978-1-4424-4497-3
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