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In the Path of Falling Objects

3.81  ·  Rating Details  ·  593 Ratings  ·  136 Reviews
Jonah and his younger brother, Simon, are on their own. They set out to find what’s left of their family, carrying between them ten dollars, a backpack full of dirty clothes, a notebook, and a stack of letters from their brother, who is serving a tour in Vietnam. And soon into their journey, they have a ride. With a man and a beautiful girl who may be in love with Jonah. O ...more
Hardcover, 326 pages
Published September 29th 2009 by Feiwel & Friends (first published September 22nd 2009)
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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Mar 16, 2015 Shelby *trains flying monkeys* rated it really liked it
Recommended to Shelby *trains flying monkeys* by: Kelly (and the Book Boar)
My friend Kelly made me read this one, she even involved Queen songs. I like Freddie Mercury so I gave in pretty easy.
This book is listed as Young Adult in my library. I think this might should have a shelf called Young Adult after dropping a line of acid. This was some jacked up stuff.
Simon and Jonah have been abandoned by their man-leg-humping mom and their older brother is off at the Vietnam war, so they decide to take the horse and go to Arizona to find their dad after he gets out of prison.
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:


Like many of my selections, I picked up The Path of Falling Objects from the library without even reading the synopsis. Andrew Smith has been kind of a miss, then a hit, and then an even bigger hit for me so when I saw this on the shelf I grabbed it. A few days ago I had a bad experience with a road trip story, so upon starting this one I was a wee bit leery – but when I realized this was going to be a road trip sto
I have a sneaking suspicion that Andrew Smith reads my reviews.

Actually, OK, that’s definitely a lie. That probably… fine definitely doesn’t happen.

But all I’m saying is that it’s a massive coincidence that he knows all the things that I harp on about wanting to be featured more in YA books and writes stories about them.

He must have seen all the not-so-subtle pleadings I’ve had with authors to write books about road trips (and not just ones girls take with a mysterious boy in a leather jacket wh
Sleepless Bookworm
Aug 25, 2014 Sleepless Bookworm rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: meh
This book was good but didn't by any means blow my mind.
After I finished it, I closed the cover, sort of just shrugged to myself and thought "meh".
I loved Andrew Smith's novel 'Winger', so I was overly excited to read 'In The Path of Falling Objects'. After reading it though, all I feel is mostly disappointment.

'Winger' had such funny, well thought out characters that reminded me of some of the guys I was friends with in high school. It was witty and well written and gave me high expectations o
Kwesi 章英狮
Jun 16, 2012 Kwesi 章英狮 rated it liked it
Recommended to Kwesi 章英狮 by:
Shelves: owned, 2012, andrew-smith
Brenda Kahn
I HATE books like this! Stories that grab you by the throat practically on page one and don't let go. Stories that squeeze and squeeze, incrementally increasing the pressure until you realize that you are not breathing. Stories about good kids stuck in sad, tragic lives with few alternatives. Oh lord. What brilliance.
Aug 31, 2010 P.J. rated it it was amazing
Book 58 for 2010. Andrew Smith's books have a way of making me have to turn the pages to see what's going to happen. I loved THE MARBURY LENS (Nov. 2010) and am equally impressed with this one. Highly recommended for boys and girls, upper middle school and up.
Shelley Daugherty
Apr 29, 2016 Shelley Daugherty rated it really liked it
This was a really good coming of age story for teenage boys. Simon and his brother Johan have always argued and the summer they decide to take to the road is not exception. But with their mother abandoning them, their father in prison, and their oldest brother in Vietnam there is no reason for them to stay and every reason for them to leave. They both know that they only have each other to depend on and the things they will run into along the way will either bond them together or break them apar ...more
Katie Carson
Feb 27, 2014 Katie Carson rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 28, 2009 Terri rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 15, 2012 Syndey rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, signed, arc, finished-copy
..."Our brother fell apart in the war.
Mother fell apart after that.
Then we had to leave."...

I don't think that Andrew Smith can write a novel that I wouldn't love. He has a unique writing style that is all his own. In The Path of Falling Objects is Andrew Smith's 2nd novel that I've read to date.

In the very beginning of the story we get a huge shocker, then we are left to let it digest for a little bit. I think Smith likes to wow us with an introduction like that. The kind that just kind of sne
Lottie Eve
In the Path of Falling Objects made me feel, in a word, dusty. Not the itchy-dust kind of dusty, but the kind of dusty where one feels like they are in a desert, in the presence of miles and miles of sand. With the hot, burning sun on their back. That’s the kind of dusty I felt when I was reading this. The genuine, realistic kind of dusty. Does that make sense? I hope so.

This is a story following the journey of Jonah and his younger brother, Simon. The boys are on their own and had run away from
Mar 27, 2009 Kelly rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Any reader 12 and up.
Shelves: top-of-the-heap
From page one, Andrew Smith's new novel IN THE PATH OF FALLING OBJECTS takes the reader by the throat and holds on tight. Maybe that's an exaggeration. And maybe it implies reading the book is not a good experience, which isn't true. So let me rephrase. Smith's new novel hits the ground running, thanks to the vulnerability of his protagonist Jonah (and his younger brother), and the brutal intensity of the story's psychotic villian, Mitch (who looks, in my imagination, like Charlie Manson, perhap ...more
Jules Hucke
Feb 19, 2013 Jules Hucke rated it really liked it
An engaging read that suffers from a lack of organization. In the end, I had to wonder how some of the elements of the story contributed to the overall brothers' journey/coming of age story. Smith's writing is lush and beautiful throughout; there are so many lyrically beautiful sentences that the book is worth reading just for them. However, it's hard to see by what right the narrator was able to wield those sentences. Loner poor kid/artist I get, but too often, what could have been emotionally ...more
Jan 18, 2016 Rizal rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourite
Maybe brothers need to do that, to deal with the most horrible things, just so they can see what they're are really made of, what's really between them. Because sometimes, I think that's a force that's more powerful than all those other things we can't do anything about.
Travis Wilkerson
Feb 11, 2016 Travis Wilkerson rated it it was amazing
this book was on of the best books I have ever read I really think everyone should read this book it does have some words and scenes I shouldn't approve to children under the age of 10 I love how it gives a twist in the middle.
Jun 26, 2014 Crystal rated it really liked it
There's something about the characters that Andrew Smith writes that just sticks with you. I find myself thinking about the people in his novels long after I finish them. This was another win.
Vaile Adams-Fujikawa
Sep 11, 2013 Vaile Adams-Fujikawa rated it it was amazing
I love Andrew Smith. His writing is smart and poignant. he's got a way of pulling a reader, at least this reader, into a book making it impossible to set the book aside-- even when threatened with motion sickness on the bus. Read this book. Recommend this book to young men in particular, though I think a voracious reader of any gender will enjoy it. I think most anyone who has experienced a deep bonding with their siblings as young person will appreciate this title, especially those who have had ...more
Jul 09, 2015 Chris rated it really liked it
A road trip. Isolation. Desperation. Siblings. Stoicism. Stubbornness. Love. Lust. Death. War. Loss. A psychopath.

"Oh," Walker swallowed. "Well, I won't ask you to tell me nothing else. Please. Every time either one of you opens your mouth, the truth gets worse and worse."

Brothers Jonah and Simon have only each other. Parents gone. Older brother lost to Vietnam. No money. No food. A shack in the dessert. A horse that died ten miles into their attempt to journey into the world. Only each other, a
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
May 16, 2010 Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy) rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, socal-author, 2009-clc
This is a short review...kind of a non-review. I'm not sure how to rate this one. Technically it is a four or five star. It is a very dark, gritty, and creepy book. And it is a very well written novel. But this is not for the faint of heart. A coming of age story set in 1970 - two brothers on a journey that goes very wrong and how they survive it.
Jan 20, 2015 Kim rated it really liked it
In 1970, 16-year-old Jonah and his younger brother Simon strike out on their own-- their father is in prison, their mother has taken off with some guy, and their older brother is in Vietnam. Jonah is determined to take care of 14-year-old Simon, but when the two boys are picked up on the side of a deserted road by Mitch and Lilly, their unpredictable, hand-to-mouth life sinks to a whole new level of danger and desperation. They are trying to get from New Mexico to Arizona to meet up with their f ...more
Jan 21, 2016 Carter rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the book very much. It left a small part of me wanting more of it as I closed it. It’s plot truly inspired me about how to live life. The main character Jonah really had a mind set and wanted to protect his brother at the same time. As the book progressed, I appreciated the multiple challenges and roadblocks Jonah had to overcome, along with some adult humor thrown in here and there that gave me a good laugh. My favorite part of the book is the message it gives. “Sometimes I’d think ab ...more
Feb 04, 2015 priscilla rated it liked it
I loved a lot of this but:

1. This falls partly on the shoulders of the audiobook reader, who delivered all of Lily's dialogue in a breathy, high-pitched caricature of a girl's voice that made her sound flat & expressionless, but I just think Smith can do better at making real people. The way she's written here is like Hemingway, Jr.

2. The ending was just too neatly wrapped up. Things should have been a MESS is all.

3. "The Indian" & "the girl" - possibly effective devices for the voices
Re the Reader
Originally reviewed on Reanna's Book Realm on blogger

Jonah and Simon are all alone. Their brother is on a tour in Vietnam, their mom left with her latest boyfriend, and their dad is in prison in Arizona. After weeks without an adult around, their power and water has turned off. The only thing they’re depending on is for their dad to get out of prison soon. So, they take it upon themselves to travel from New Mexico to Arizona. The only problem: they don’t have a car, and have about ten dollars wi
Niki Smith
I loved the Marbury Lens books; they were some of my favorite books that year. Ghost Medicine was eh. But boy, reading this, the fourth book in a row with only one girl, does the pattern really start to grate.

Lily does nothing. She is an object, sitting passively, the entire book. The narrator, supposedly so deeply in love with her, blatantly says so, when asked why all this is happening. "We took something he thought was his. The girl."

That's not a person. People have names. "The girl" is an ob
Dec 05, 2014 Cait rated it really liked it
I'm not crying hysterically, you're crying hysterically. ....Don't look at me right now.

Okay. So for a lot of this book, I was mildly bored. Despite so much stuff happening, it seemed to move at this really meandering pace that I found frustrating. The reason I was so frustrated was because I was so unsettled throughout the entire story. It was a feeling in my gut that I couldn't get rid of and it made me anxious and I wanted the book to go faster so that the feeling would go away.

Maybe that jus
Paula Schumm
Mar 02, 2016 Paula Schumm rated it it was amazing
I listened to the audiobook from the library. This is a coming of age story of two teenage brothers who have been abandoned by their mother. Their father is in jail, and their older brother is serving in Vietnam. It's 1970, and the two boys set out to find their father, who will be out of jail soon, and their brother, who will be coming home soon. They are picked up by a dangerous young man and a pregnant girl their age. This one keeps the reader on the edge of his seat. Very well written. Recom ...more
Angela C
Mar 20, 2015 Angela C rated it did not like it
I hate not finishing books, but I just couldn’t make it through In the Path of Falling Objects. This isn’t necessarily because it’s a bad book – I reserve judgment on that – but because I couldn’t handle the grit and ugliness of the stuff that happens in the novel.

I loved Andrew Smith’s book Winger, which is why I was so eager to read In the Path of Falling Objects. As it turns out, though, the two are nothing alike. Winger is hilarious, goofy, prep school fun (at least until the end – then watc
Aug 15, 2014 Bethany rated it it was amazing
"'Ha!' Mitch laughed. 'Isn't gravity a wonderful thing? It makes everything you could ever want drop right at your feet. What could be more convenient than that?'"

Oh my goodness, I am speechless.

In The Path Of Falling Objects was one of the greatest books I've ever read! I'm still a little shaky after just reading it, the tears on my cheeks just beginning to dry. In The Path Of Falling Objects is the kind of book that I've been looking for, for ages!

It starts off with two brothers. Sixteen year
May 23, 2014 O.R. rated it it was amazing
“I want you and Simon to be brothers again. You guys should do things that brothers do. Smoke cigarettes and chase after girls. Sneak into drive-ins and get drunk together. Don’t ever wear a suit, and especially not a uniform. And when you get into fights, do it because you’re sticking up for each other. And beat the hell out of any guy who wants to mess with you or your brother. Because I’d do all that with you and Simon if I could.”
— In The Path of Falling Objects by Andrew Smith

It is always d
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LOVE IT 1 8 Oct 17, 2009 01:38PM  
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Andrew Smith is the author of Winger , The Marbury Lens , Passenger , Ghost Medicine , Stick , and In the Path of Falling Objects . Grasshopper Jungle is coming from Dutton/Penguin on February 11, 2014.
More about Andrew Smith...

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