EXIT STRATEGY by Ryan Potter


Age Range: 14 & up
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Zach’s smitten with best buddy Tank’s twin sister, Sarah, who is suddenly hot. He’s also desperate to leave his crummy Rust Belt suburb. However, Tank is both super-protective of his sister and a competitive champion wrestler whose own exit strategy from this impoverished Michigan town is a sports scholarship, and he’ll get it however he can. The twins’ father is an intimidating undercover cop, so Zach has to be sly. Despite flawed narrative logic, strong pacing keeps the story moving along with cursing, underage smoking, drinking, theft, vandalism and a little kissing. Outrage over the failures of adults portrayed doesn’t mesh with Zach and Tank’s own criminal behavior. A penchant for theft and making money selling booze from the liquor store where he works is no biggie as far as Zach’s concerned, but the adultery of Tank’s dad, separated from a drug-using wife for years, is horrifying to him, as is a coach who is pushing steroids. Nonetheless, it’s an entertaining-enough summer story of a bad boy with clueless parents, a sour Michigan economy and a few secrets thrown in to make it both fast-paced and riveting. (Fiction. YA)

Pub Date: March 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-7387-1573-5
Page count: 312pp
Publisher: Flux
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 2010