In the middle of nowhere Montana, en route to summer camp via a train, Ry learns that “a statistically improbable number of things have gone wrong,” and camp has been cancelled. When Ry steps off the train in an attempt to get cell phone service and contact home, the train leaves without him. So begins his adventure where a statistically improbable number of things to go wrong for him as he tries to get back home.
At 352 pages, Ry's journey home has more twists and turns over a few day's time than statistically probable. Some points of the story drag, leaving the reader to wonder if Ry will ever get home. The inclusion of occasional illustrations of Ry's journey are both a welcome addition, but also so sporadic that it feels incomplete. Brief chapters telling the "related stories" of the simultaneous happenings in his grandfather's, parents' and dogs' lives keep the story moving and the peril building and add a little something to the overall narrative. The dogs' story, told through illustrations and dog thoughts are especially enjoyable. An overall satisfying story and something to recommend to older middle schoolers and high schoolers in the mood for a road (water, airplane, train, foot) trip.
As Easy As Falling Off the Face of the Earth
by Lynne Rae Perkins
Published by Harper Teen
Copy borrowed from my middle school library.
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