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MILES BETWEEN by Mary E. Pearson Kirkus Star


by Mary E. Pearson

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-8050-8828-1
Publisher: Henry Holt

Pearson mesmerizes with a heavily cryptic back story that explodes with full emotional force. Seventeen-year-old Destiny’s a loner who’s been shunted from one boarding school to another without seeing her parents for a decade. Two arcs emerge simultaneously: Destiny’s childhood, sliding out in painful bits, and a terrifyingly beautiful truant day that sees Destiny and three not-quite-friends escape from campus in a found pink car for a road trip. The date is October 19th, which spells certain doom in Destiny’s numbers-obsessed mind, yet a mystical momentum pulls her along as the day stacks up coincidence upon coincidence, each one sweet but suspicious. Aidan has national-policy opinions; he meets the president in a café restroom. Destiny wants a day that’s fair; everything from lamb adoption to hot-dog vendors fits a puzzle-piece of fairness. The page-turning suspense lies in Destiny’s oblique but bittersweet and humbly written history, and in the question, even, of what genre this is. Serendipity? Ominous forces? What’s dangerous about October 19th? The long-awaited reveal has a massively cathartic payoff. (Fiction. YA)