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Publisher's Summary

This raw and vivid portrait of juvenile detention centers and life on the run catapults John Gilstrap to the forefront of the crime thriller genre. Nathan Bailey is a 12-year-old juvenile-hall orphan with a problem. Covered in blood, he is caught on videotape fleeing from a murder scene. Will the boy evade the police long enough to tell the truth? Or will a hit man kill him before he gets the chance?
©1996 John Gilstrap (P)1996 Recorded Books
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By R. Pontiflet on 01-14-18

Run Nathan Run!!

This story is highly entertaining and it held my interest throughout. As the publisher's summary provides, Nathan is on the run for his life. Nathan is the underdog (wrongly accused, etc) and I root for children and underdogs, and against scum-bags and greedy relatives. This story is told in a way that's entertaining and suspenseful. As described by one reviewer, Nathan will steal your heart. His grief over the death of his parents and his struggles to survive abuse by the adults in his life, have taught and "schooled" Nathan to the point that he's become "street smart." However, when Nathan's dilemma comes to the attention of "the bitch", a radio host, he stole her heart and all of her listeners' heart as well.... the tide begins to slowly turn in Nathan favor.

George Guidall's outstanding performance brought the story and characters to life. A great read. Highly Recommend.....

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18 of 18 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Richard Delman on 04-19-18

A terrific thriller. You will lose sleep over it.

This is a great book. I looked at the rest of John Gilstrap's books, and they seem to be about an agent named Graves, who works for the government in some kind of CIA/FBI espionage series of adventures. I don't really like those kind of books. I do like this kind of book. The protagonist is a twelve-year-old boy named Nathan Bailey, who is falsely accused of killing a guard in the "juvenile justice" center where he is being held. The killing is actually pure self-defense, but no one knows that in the beginning of the story. Nathan escapes and goes on the run, thus the title of the book. As Nathan is running, a woman named Denise Carpenter falls into a radio talk show host position, in which she is called The Bitch, a part which is not natural to her, but which she plays with panache. As soon as her program begins, the story of Nathan Bailey becomes news, and people start calling in to her with their ignorant, enraged voices, not interested in hearing the facts of the case but all too eager to be titillated by the idea of a mad, twelve-year-old cop-killing maniac. Soon Nathan himself calls in from one of his hiding places, and very quickly Denise understands the truth. She begins to defend Nathan, and the world gets enraged at her for taking his side. However, she uses the force of her personality and the rightness of the truth to persuade her audience that Nathan is in fact innocent. This is a great story, and you get pulled into it by both by the excellent writing of Mr. Gilstrap and also by the truly captivating voice and talents of the priceless George Guidall. This man has managed via his many talents to embody a number of fictional characters, to the point at which I just cannot imagine any other narrator trying to top him. Walt Longmire is probably the best-known of these. Craig Johnson has developed a huge fan club of people who cannot wait for the next Longmire adventure. The series of books has now been turned into a Netflix TV series, which for once is done with as much skill as the source material. The first TV series that I have really enjoyed since Deadwood.
In any case, Nathan wears out his legs and his stamina, running away from people who want to get him, the most dangerous of whom is a hit man who was hired originally to pay Ricky Harris, the juvenile center guard, to kill Nathan. I am not making the plot sound as entertaining as it is, which means that Mr. Gilstrap is a way better writer than I am. Also, he has about ten hours to pull you in to his story, plus the inimitable Mr. Guidall to portray the entire cast of characters. The ending of the book is a little weak, as another reviewer remarks, but that is about the only criticism that I can make. Read this book. I predict that you will lose sleep, as I have, and that you will enjoy this adventure immensely.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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