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Run If You Dare

Randy Powell

ISBN 10: 1439510458 / ISBN 13: 9781439510452
Published by Farrar Straus & Giroux, 2009
Used Condition: Good
From Better World Books (Mishawaka, IN, U.S.A.)

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Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Bookseller Inventory # GRP68021947

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Run If You Dare

Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux

Publication Date: 2009

Book Condition:Good

Edition: Reprint.

About this title


A teenager's-eye view of parental desperation

What do you do when your dad has a midlife crisis? This is the dilemma of fourteen-year-old Gardner, whose father's been laid off and is now expressing boredom with his life, and even talking to Gardner about leaving the family. Gardner has all along thought he'd like to grow up to emulate his father, whom he has idolized since childhood. But, with this disappointment and possible betrayal haunting his family, Gardner isn't so sure anymore. Eventually, through old and new friendships and a dedicated endeavor to become physically strong, Gardner finds the emotional strength and identity to survive whatever upset may be in store for him and his family's future. In scenes both comical and heartbreaking, Randy Powell demonstrates once more that he is one of the foremost contemporary writers for young adults.


Gardner Dickinson has always been very laid-back. That's why it doesn't really bother him that while his friends and sister seem to have long-term goals, he just moseys through life browsing through books and trying out weights, without ever finishing a novel or beginning an exercise program. Then, his dad gets laid off and can't seem to motivate himself to find another job. As he watches his father putter aimlessly in the garage day after day, Gardner begins to suspect that his inability to concentrate may be hereditary. And during a serious heart-to-heart talk about the state of their family, older sister Lacey confirms it: "You and Dad both have a problem in the focusing and following-through departments... you come up with a new delusion every week but you don't act on a single one." Gardner wants to prove Lacey wrong, so he takes up running, forcing himself to stick with it even when he wants to quit. But while Gardner is learning discipline, his dad seems to be slipping further and further into a deep depression. Can Gardner convince his father that it's not too late to change his ways before their family drifts apart from lack of focus?

Randy Powell has written a subtle, smart novel that sincerely portrays two of the most difficult hurdles of adolescence: the search for meaning in one's life and the dawning realization that parents are people, too. A thoughtful addition to Powell's collection of teen-boy-angst novels, the most recent being Tribute to Another Dead Rock Star. (Ages 13 and older) --Jennifer Hubert

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