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CAN’T GET THERE FROM HERE by Todd Strasser

CAN’T GET THERE FROM HERE

By Todd Strasser

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: April 1st, 2004
ISBN: 0-689-84169-8
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

This gritty portrayal of the lives of homeless teenagers conveys the hopelessness of runaways and throwaway children with convincing realism. Fifteen-year-old “Maybe” lives with her friends on the streets of New York. They reject even the relative comfort of homeless shelters as they have rejected their own names, choosing street names such as Rainbow, Maggot, and Jewel. Maybe chooses freedom from all rules over any kind of security, but the story makes it clear that her total freedom ultimately leads to early death or slavery to adult predators. When she finally decides to try to help Tears, the 12-year-old newest member of her tribe, Maybe begins to find her own salvation. Strasser’s vibrant prose plunges young readers into Maybe’s hard life, all without the use of profanity. A very welcome addition to the slice-of-life genre in YA literature that may help to change some real lives. (Fiction. YA)