Never Eighteen by Megan BosticNever Eighteen by Megan Bostic

Never Eighteen

byMegan Bostic

Paperback | January 17, 2012

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about

Austin Parker is never going to see his eighteenth birthday. At the rate he's going, he probably won't even see the end of the year.&nbspThe doctors say his chances of surviving are slim to none even with treatment, so he's decided it's time to let go.But before he goes, Austin wants to mend the broken&nbspfences&nbspin his life. So with the help of his best friend, Kaylee, Austin visits&nbspevery person in his life who touched him in a special way. He journeys to the places he's loved and those he's never seen. And what starts as a way to say goodbye turns into a personal journey that brings love, acceptance, and meaning to&nbspAustin's life.
Megan Bostic lives in Tacoma, Washington. This is her first book for teens.
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Title:Never EighteenFormat:PaperbackDimensions:208 pages, 7 × 5 × 0.5 inPublished:January 17, 2012Publisher:Houghton Mifflin HarcourtLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0547550766

ISBN - 13:9780547550763

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Stunning Reminder of What it Means to Live (Originally posted at http://lostatmidnightreviews.blogspot.ca/) I read a review on this book awhile back and knew I had to check it out. It seemed to be one of those books that punches you straight in the heart, and leaves a mark for a long time to come. And it was. It most definitely was. Although you expect the flow of events, when they happen they stun you. I remember sitting on my back porch with tears pouring down my face as I read the tragic and moving story of one Austin Parker. I love to be inspired by books, and I felt that with Never Eighteen. Watching the journey made by Austin to try and help all the broken people in his life was heart-warming, and heart-breaking. He was trying to give life to those around him, because he himself didn't have a chance to live. Each person that entered the story left their own impact, be it with their stories or their lost will to live. And each time, Austin, the boy marked for death, tried to mend the broken pieces. Not everyone let him, not everyone embraced his message, but I think that was just right. What I really liked about Never Eighteen is that it didn't focus on the illness. It wasn't a tragic story about death, but an uplifting story about the beauty of life. Austin was surrounded by death but determined to live life to the fullest, and to make sure everyone else did the same. I felt invested in the story, but I didn't know how much until I felt myself breaking down along with everyone else. I wanted this boy to get a chance to grow up, to see the world, to live a life he so greatly deserved. But, what he did in his short time was moving, and was exactly what he wanted. The only reason I couldn't give Never Eighteen five stars is because of the writing. This is a debut novel, which usually isn't a writer's strongest work. I felt the writing to be a bit too simple, and didn't wow me like I expected. The story made up for it, but the writing itself slightly detracted from my overall love. This was a tiny book but it left a huge hole in my heart. A life and death story that lifted me up, while breaking my heart. A great read, and one I won't soon forget. - Ciara (Lost at Midnight)
Date published: 2012-09-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pulls at the heartstrings Austin Parker isn't going to make it to his 18th birthday. Rather than let it cloud the time he has left, he decides to do. He enlists the help of his best friend Kaylee and her Mustang and sees the people and places to try to make the best memories he can for them to hold onto once he's gone. Austin was that guy that everyone liked. Good looking, athletic, friends with everyone, a great guy. His carefree nature made him an instantly likeable character. He sets out with his longtime friend and crush Kaylee to fulfil his bucket list of sorts. He wants to try to mend some relationships, apologize to others, hike a beautiful mountain and eat at a fancy restaurant. Through these moments we see how strong Austin is and how much he cares for his loved ones. He pushes himself because he knows it'll be worth it in the end. I knew going into Never Eighteen that it wasn't going to be a happy book with a happy ending. It definitely had its moments that had me cracking a smile but at its core it's still a chronicle about a dying boy. Seeing Austin struggling with his mortality, struggling with the people he was going to leave behind, how he would leave some part of himself behind, made his 'quest' all the more important and heart wrenching when I could see him begin to falter. I could feel him slipping away and I openly cried when Austin's mask would slip and his vulnerability and fear poured out before he composed himself. The fact that I'm taking a class about death made this book hit even harder, because no one can understand how a dying person is really feeling until you're in their position. It's an extremely slippery slope and I felt Austin, and Bostic, handled it with as much grace as can be accomplished. Bottom Line Never Eighteen is the story of a dying teen's quest to help those he loves before he dies. He sees as many people and goes as many places he can while he's still able. Austin was an extremely compassionate individual, and he keeps his head held high until the very end. This book was full of meaning and emotions and so much love. Fantastic debut. Review from my blog: http://allofeverythingforyou.blogspot.ca/2012/03/review-never-eighteen-by-megan-bostic.html
Date published: 2012-04-22

Read from the Book

chapter one I had the dream again. The one where I’m running. I don’t know what from or where to, but I’m scared—terrified, really. I wake, shooting up, drenched in sweat. Jumping out of bed, I immediately head to my computer. I need to get some things done this weekend, and I’m running out of time. God, I hope Kaylee can help. What if she asks what I’m doing? I can’t tell her, can I? No. She’d try to stop me, I’m sure of it. Shit, I hope she doesn’t have to work. I should have checked. Without her Mustang, I may not be able to do this, and I want to, I need to. Otherwise, things may just continue as they always have: painful, motionless. Like treading water. You stay afloat, but you never really get anywhere. A flash, a flicker of life, that’s all I want. I don’t think it’s too much to ask. I sit at the computer and stare at the monitor, wondering where to begin. I need to make a list. It’s hard, but soon it all comes rushing to me—people, places, things. Over and over I think of Kaylee. I want her to be there. Need her to be beside me through all of it. I type until my thoughts die down, come to a stop. I hit print, grab the list, and shove it into the pocket of my jacket, hanging on my closet door. I look in the mirror. I’ve changed so much in the last year, physically, emotionally, mentally. I may be smaller now, but my heart and mind are stronger. These last few months I’ve come to realize that life doesn’t wait. If we stand still it passes us by, and by the time we understand that, it may be too late. The people I see this weekend—I hope they’re okay with this. I want them to take hold of it and not let go. I hope they at least listen. If they don’t, it will kill me. I grab a shoebox that’s been sitting in my closet. It held the new pair of green Converse high-tops my mom bought me before the school year started. Cool shoes. I take the lid off the box and put it on my bed. I pack the box with books, CDs, pictures, my poetry notebook, things that are important to me. I won’t have everything I need until Sunday night. On Monday, it goes to Kaylee’s for safekeeping. It’s late, and I have a full weekend ahead of me. I put the lid back on the shoebox, and place it on the top shelf of my closet. Out of sight. There’s no need for my mom to find it. She wouldn’t understand. I shut off the light and climb back into bed. My body’s tired, but my mind keeps working, churning. I’m anxious, nervous, thinking of what to say, what to do. Sleep comes with difficulty, but in the end, it still comes.

Editorial Reviews

Bostic writes this graceful, affecting tale without pretension? Perhaps it's because of that simplicity that the story concludes with such a powerful emotional punch." - Kirkus "It is easy to connect with Austin because his journey is honorable? ..Bostic's narrative is concise, chapters are short, and the story never lags. Her story is sad, but it is real and pulls no punches." - VOYA "