Seventeen year old Ethan and his mom are planning a trip to South America but when they arrive at the airport, an error sends them back home. When they arrive at their New York apartment, they find Ethan's dad with his secretary. Ethan storms off and eventually gets mugged on the streets; his mom also leaves.
In a few months, it's a whole new living arrangement. Ethan's dad has moved in to a cabin in the woods and he and his mom stay in New York, only to find that his grandmother has suffered a serious medical condition and needs help. Ethan's mom sends him to stay with his dad. The two aren't talking to each other so it's going to be an uncomfortable situation. Add on top of that, Ethan is not an outdoors person.
Eventually, when Ethan's dad goes missing, Ethan needs to become what he doesn't think he is: brave. This is the story of a young man pushing himself to the limits to find his father, but also find himself.
This story pulls you in and makes for a very easy read. But I found all the scenarios that lead up to Ethan's being out in the wilderness too coincidental. His dad cheats, for some reason decides to move out to the middle of no where (why? how does this fit his character? what is he doing about work?), and then Ethan's grandmother gets sick and his mom must leave to take care of her, without Ethan. The entire purpose of the book is for Ethan to be out in the woods but the story leading up to that didn't feel entirely flushed out.
I enjoyed his journey out in the wilderness with his neighbours. The fights they had between them, the animals they travelled with, how they were sore and where they camped. This was the most enjoyable part of the book. The lessons that Ethan learned about himself were a little stereotypical but the book did end realistically.
Thanks to TLC Book Tours for letting me be a part of this tour!
First Line: "Ethan remembers the shaking most clearly."
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