I received this book for free from Gifted, Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.100 Sideways Miles by Andrew Smith
Also by this author: Grasshopper Jungle
Narrator: Kirby Heyborne
Length: 7 Hours
Published by Simon and Schuster on September 8th 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Action & Adventure, Boys & Men, Family, Parents
Format: Audiobook, ARC
Source: Gifted, Publisher
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Destiny takes a detour in this “wickedly witty and offbeat novel” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) that was nominated for the National Book Award.
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.
NYTBR Notable Children’s Book of the Year NPR Best Book of the Year NYPL’s Best Book of the Year for Teens ALA Best Fiction for Young Adults Chicago Public Library Best Teen Fiction of the Year A Texas Tayshas Top Ten Selection
Why Did I Listen To 100 Sideways Miles by Andrew Smith?
100 Sideways Miles by Andrew Smith has been on my TBR pile for what feels like FOREVER. I have had a physical copy of this book since 2014 and an audiobook copy since like 2015 via SYNC. And so, when I ran out of Hoopla borrows for the month, I turned to the books on my phone from Sync. I mean, why not give this a listen as I would finally clear this from my TBR and be able to move it from my physical copies to my donate box. Also? I really did enjoy the audiobook of Grasshopper Jungle even if some of it went over my head.
What’s The Story Here?
Andrew Smith’s 100 Sideways Miles is about a boy named Finn Easton. Finn measures time in miles, meaning that he thinks of it as how many miles has the Earth rotated instead of minutes. Finn’s dad is this famous author who has written a story that almost seems as though it is about Finn. He has to convince himself that he’s not a figment of his dad’s mind and that he’s not a character in his dad’s story. Yes, this feels kind of meta.
Finn’s life isn’t all doom and gloom though. He’s best friends with Cade Hernandez who basically makes life an adventure. He’s also in love with this girl named Julia Bishop who seems to love him back. Finn gets these seizures though, which do play a big part in the book. Plus, his mom is dead due to a horse falling from the sky and landing on their car while drive. It’s the reason why Finn gets seizures. Anyways, Julia moves and so, Finn and Cade decide to take a road trip to see her, and that’s really what drives the overall plot of this book.
How Did I Like This Book?
Of course, mileage may vary while reading 100 Sideways Miles. However, I am at the point where I recognize that if I am reading a book by Andrew Smith, things are going to get weird. I mean, how often do you read books where a horse falls 100 miles from the sky and basically kills one person and causes the epilepsy of another. Despite the weirdness, this is such a smart book. It’s one that will make you think. I also like how the story just sort of comes together. Smith certainly has a way with words, even though yes, there are absolutely weird directions in which the story goes.
How’s The Narration?
The audiobook of 100 Sideways Miles is narrated by Kirby Heyborne. Heyborne is another one of those narrators where I feel like I’ve listened to at least 20 books narrated by him. He’s good, no doubt about that. He’s an appropriate narrator for this story. I’m definitely won over by the audiobook and glad I decided to give this a listen, even when some bits were a little hard to follow.
Other reviews of 100 Sideways Miles by Andrew Smith:
- Disability In Kidlit – “did its best and opened up doors for people to see epilepsy in fiction“
- The Young Folks – “a superbly written novel“
- The Librarian Who Doesn’t Say Shhh – “full of quirk“