I'm so thrilled to have the 100 Sideways Miles Blog Tour stopping by today with my Review and a Giveaway...
100 Sideways Miles
by Andrew Smith
Simon & Schuster
Finn Easton sees the world through miles instead of minutes. It’s how he makes sense of the world, and how he tries to convince himself that he’s a real boy and not just a character in his father’s bestselling cult-classic book. Finn has two things going for him: his best friend, the possibly-insane-but-definitely-excellent Cade Hernandez, and Julia Bishop, the first girl he’s ever loved.
Then Julia moves away, and Finn is heartbroken. Feeling restless and trapped in the book, Finn embarks on a road trip with Cade to visit their college of choice in Oklahoma. When an unexpected accident happens and the boys become unlikely heroes, they take an eye-opening detour away from everything they thought they had planned—and learn how to write their own destiny.
After reading Winger, I became a huge Andrew Smith fan, then after devouring Grasshopper Jungle, I was completely enamored with Smith’s writing. Now, after finishing 100 Sideways Miles, I can say I’m absolutely in love with this author’s work and he has earned a place on my “Will Read Anything He/She Writes” list!
100 Sideways Miles tells the story of a boy who, like many other boys, feels trapped in a role he’s not sure is even his. Finn Easton, with his two different colored eyes, scarred back, and seizures, measures time in distance and desperately wants to be more than just a character in his father’s wildly popular book. Finn has two wonderful things going for him: his probably crazy, but completely lovable BFF, Cade, and his beautiful on the outside and inside girlfriend, Julia. But when Julia moves away, a heartbroken Finn accompanies Cade on a road trip to visit a college in Oklahoma. And when the unthinkable happens, Finn must finally decide just who he is and what he’s made of.
Andrew Smith creates unforgettable stories full of pitch-perfect writing, palpable emotions, wonderfully developed characters, and unique premises, and 100 Sideways Miles is no exception. This quirky novel is an engaging mix of laugh-out-loud humor, powerful emotion, and beautiful coming of age moments.
Like Smith’s other YA novels, 100 Sideways Miles is full of the unexpected and down-right strange, but never feels over-the-top or hokey. No matter what odd situations his characters find themselves in or what one in a billion events happen, Smith’s stories always feels so real, like they have to be playing out somewhere in the world. Smith is a superb storyteller who expertly balances the light and the dark, the funny and the heart-wrenching, in 100 Sideways Miles. With its quirks, unusual pacing, and unique writing style, in the hands of a less talented writer, 100 Sideways Miles could have gone very wrong, but Smith makes it go very, very right. Like Winger and Grasshopper Jungle, 100 Sideways Miles kept me laughing and punched me in the heart, often at the same time. And like these two previous books, the poignant and profound emotion in 100 Sideways Miles comes quietly, but leaves a powerful and lasting mark. Smith explores the complex, confusing, amazing, painful, wonderful, complicated experience of being a teen in such gorgeous, smart, relatable ways.
Andrew Smith excels at creating and developing compelling characters! Finn Easton, Cade Hernandez, Julia Bishop, and, of course, Laika the dog, are unforgettable characters that I fell madly in love with. Finn will break your heart, Cade will make you melt, Julia will make you smile, and Laika will make you laugh. These are teen characters that sound and act like actual teens, but aren’t forced into some cliche role. They are real, they are likable, they are AWESOME!
My Final Thoughts: Thought-provoking, funny, powerful, smart, incredible...these are just a few words I’d use to describe this stellar novel! With 100 Sideways Miles, Andrew Smith has once again created an important and must-read YA book!
Andrew Smith is the award-winning author of several Young Adult novels, including the critically acclaimed WINGER (Starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Booklist, and Shelf Awareness—an Amazon “Best of the Year”) and THE MARBURY LENS (A YALSA BFYA, and Starred reviews and Best of the Year in both Publishers Weekly and Booklist).
He is a native-born Californian who spent most of his formative years traveling the world. His university studies focused on Political Science, Journalism, and Literature. He has published numerous short stories and articles. STAND OFF, the sequel to WINGER, coming in January 2015, is his ninth novel. He lives in Southern California.
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