Kirkus Reviews QR Code
SHIFT by Jennifer Bradbury Kirkus Star


by Jennifer Bradbury

Pub Date: May 20th, 2008
ISBN: 978-1-4169-4732-5
Publisher: Atheneum

A smart and moving coming-of-age story about two best friends, Chris and Win, who bicycle across the country the summer after high-school graduation. Things are beginning to shift in their relationship. Chris has always cut Win a lot of slack, knowing that his friend’s tyrannical father misses no opportunity to belittle his son. But, geez, would it kill Win to help out with expenses? After all, it’s not like he doesn’t have the money; in fact, he’s got thousands of dollars in cash hidden at the bottom of his pannier. Bradbury perfectly captures the spirit of a cross-country bike trip, alternating Chris’s recollection of the trip itself with the fallout he experiences upon starting school, having finished the trek solo after Win unaccountably ditched him in Montana. This device ratchets up the suspense on both ends, keeping readers guessing along with Chris: Just what happened to Win? What will talking to the FBI agent Win’s father has sicced on him mean to Win, to Chris, to what might be left of their friendship? Fresh, absorbing, compelling. (Fiction. YA)