Greyhound

  • by Steffan Piper
  • Narrated by Nick Podehl
  • 9 hrs and 1 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Sebastien Ranes’s single mom and her feckless boyfriend can’t be bothered to take care of a stuttering 12-year-old. Banished to live with his grandmother on the far side of the country, the boy can barely understand a bus schedule when he gets dumped at the Greyhound station in Stockton, California. Given $35 and a one-way ticket to Altoona, Pennsylvania, Sebastien must cross the country - alone, without a clue how to fend for himself.
Filled with youthful anger and naïveté, Sebastien heads out into the "Morning in America" of Ronald Reagan’s 1980s, encountering temperamental bus drivers, charming, shifty, and downright dangerous strangers, the music of Daryl Hall and John Oates, and an ex-con named Marcus, who takes the boy under his wing. In an unforgettable trek that evokes Oliver Twist and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the unlikely pair lurch from one misadventure to another, tumbling toward an elusive understanding of where and how, in a troubling world, to look for light.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Warm Story of Fragility and Friendship

That "Greyhound" is based on a true story is both tragic and wonderful. Cold and fragile, young Sebastien is a lonely boy shunted off to live with his grandparents. And apparently it's not the first time his unloving mother (and absent father) have tossed him aside. Through his journey and his friendship with the ex-con but also grieving Marcus, he learns about life, he learns about how to live with the hand that was dealt him, he learns what it is to be a man.
This is a great little book, filled with spicy tacos in Albuquerque, a man who defecates on himself in Phoenix (oh, the joys of bus riding...!), hijackings, and Hall and Oates. Plus, no spoilers but, there's an action taken, a choice made, and possible consequences that add suspense to the latter half of the book.
Mostly it's the wisdom of the warmhearted Marcus to the note-taking Sebastien.
I see no similarities really to "Huckleberry Finn" and the like, but it's a sweet tale and Nick Podehl, who sometimes falters when he does nonfiction, narrates this really, really well, capturing everyone from Sebastien and Marcus, to a grouchy waitress, to the loudspeaker at the bus station.
Sometimes you just need a nice, good book about broken people reaching out, reaching within. "Greyhound" is it...
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- Gillian

What an unexpected pleasure to read!

I was caught up from the very beginning of this book. From the wonderful narration to the personal growth and struggles of Sebastian, it never once had me bored. What an adventure! Sebastian's selfish mother dumps him onto a Greyhound bus in Stockton, CA, and he was to go all the way to Altoona, PA by himself. She ever-so-generously (yes, that's sarcasm) gave the kid $35 for all of his meals along the way, which, even in 1981 was not enough money. He embarks upon a 3 day trip that will forever change the life of this intelligent and very deep 12 year old kid. From the friends he makes along the way, to the other colorful characters he meets, the experiences of his trip will change his outlook on his life and his expectations for his future. You can't help but fall in love with Sebastian as he is thrust into completely unexpected situations. What you'd think would be a long, boring trip is anything but. This gem of a book is WELL worth a credit!
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- Krista

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-10-2012
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio