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The Distance To Home

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4.30  ·  Rating details ·  548 ratings  ·  167 reviews
Last summer, Quinnen was the star pitcher of her baseball team, the Panthers. They’re headed for the championship, and her loudest supporter at every game was her best friend and older sister, Haley.

This summer, everything is different. Haley’s death, at the end of last summer, has left Quinnen and her parents reeling. Without Haley in the stands, Quinnen doesn’t want to
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Hardcover, 240 pages
Published June 28th 2016 by Random House/Knopf Children’s
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Tiffany Reynolds Eleven is a great age to read this book; they can understand family relationships, infer things that aren't explicitly stated, and probably know…moreEleven is a great age to read this book; they can understand family relationships, infer things that aren't explicitly stated, and probably know something about baseball too. (Though you don't have to be a baseball fan to read this book.) I'd put the best age range at 10--14.(less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Jenn Bishop Yes! Will be mailing it out on Monday. :)

Community Reviews

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4.30  · 
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 ·  548 ratings  ·  167 reviews


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Ashley Blake
Oct 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Beautiful, quiet story of loss and healing. I loved Quinnen's voice and journey in this book. In particular, I found the dynamic between this tween girl and her teenage older sister, Haley, really fascinating and well done. When Haley becomes interested in romance and gets a boyfriend, Quinnen doesn't know how to handle it. I loved seeing her point of view, trying to understand that world of intense feeling and new infatuations as a 10/11 year-old. Such a sweet story!
Nat
Jun 04, 2016 marked it as dnf
Shelves: arc
Last summer, Quinnen was the star pitcher of her baseball team, the Panthers. They’re headed for the championship, and her loudest supporter at every game was her best friend and older sister, Haley.

This summer, everything is different. Haley’s death, at the end of last summer, has left Quinnen and her parents reeling.

What I liked:

• Quinnen’s alternating points of view between this summer and last summer.

• Book clubs: I had a nice little walk down memory lane when they featured Are You There G
...more
Monica Tesler
Jul 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I was fortunate to read an advance reviewer copy of The Distance to Home by Jenn Bishop. I really enjoyed this bittersweet story of family, friendship, grief, and baseball. I adored the heroine--spunky, impulsive, passionate Quinnen. The author's use of both past and present narratives is well balanced and effectively gives us a sense of Quinn's world both before and after her sister's death without having to dwell too much on the days around the tragedy. The book is sad, but not a "sad book." I ...more
Victoria Coe
Jun 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I received an advance reader's copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The Distance to Home is a great middle grade book with a lot of heart and a lot of baseball! I had a ball rooting for Quinnen, a lovably flawed and very believable heroine, through two pivotal summers when she makes more than her share of mistakes, learns to move on after a tragedy, and finds her way back to her team.

Jenn Bishop has created a family and a cast of supporting characters that tugged at my heartstrings
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Abby Cooper
Jun 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
You know those unbelievably special books where you can't stop thinking about the story and characters long after you've finished reading? This is one of those books. THE DISTANCE TO HOME is a heartfelt novel that explores sibling relationships, guilt, grief, and so much more. (Oh, and baseball! You can't forget about baseball.) Jenn Bishop does such an amazing job alternating between the past and the present. The transitions are as flawless as the characters are memorable. I've really never rea ...more
Lois Sepahban
Jul 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky to read an advanced copy of The Distance to Home by Jenn Bishop.

It's a beautiful story of love and loss, told in chapters that alternate between last summer and this summer. It was sometimes difficult to witness Quinnen's pain as she worked toward some kind of acceptance, but it was also impossible to look away. Quinnen fit herself into my heart and I wanted so much for her to re-connect with her parents and her team.

Once I started reading, I couldn't put this book down.
Bridget Hodder
Jul 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
THE DISTANCE TO HOME is the beautifully written, bittersweet, deeply resonant story of a girl, Quinnen, who has lost her sister Haley. Quinnen seems to have also lost her relationship with everything else that mattered most in her life: Her mom. Her dad. Baseball.

The author draws the reader immediately and completely into Quinnen's world. The characters are sensitively written and deeply realized, to the point where they feel, not like fiction on a page, but like real, living friends. Friends yo
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Lee Malone
Jun 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book — it's got all sorts of great moments, ranging from hilarious to heart-breaking. Told in chapters that alternate between what's happening this summer and what happened last summer, it's a story of a baseball playing girl who lost her beloved older sister and is trying to figure out how to live and breathe again. (And maybe, just maybe, get back on the pitcher's mound)

There's a lot to admire in this story, which manages to capture the family's grief without ever becom
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Jennifer
Jun 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was such a wonderful, heartfelt read. It's the story of two summers: the summer before and the summer after the main character's sister died. Quinnen needs to find her way back: to baseball and a new normal. Quinnen is SUCH a delightful character - completely and totally a middle grader. She's headstrong, big-hearted and she loves her sister and baseball. But things are changing and Quinnen is not so happy about that. Her relationship with her sister is changing, causing a rift between them ...more
Janet
Jul 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

So this book. Wow. I laughed. I cried. I didn't want it to end. Quinnen and her family are taking in a player from the local minor league baseball team. Her parents hope it will remind Quinnen of her love for the game . . . Because Quinnen gave it all up when her sister died last summer.

The chapters alternate between this summer and last, and boy does the author show you exactly what Quinnen lost. I ached for Quinnen, knowing what was coming, bu
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Brina
My nine year old daughter recently read this book. I selected this for her in my ongoing attempt for her to enjoy things related to baseball. She enjoyed the friendship between the two girls in the novel as well as the scenes on the baseball diamond. Appropriate for children in grades 4-8.
Melanie
Aug 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful addition to the middle grade canon! THE DISTANCE TO HOME is a wonderfully balanced story or family and friendship, as a young girl comes to terms with her sister's loss over one baseball-filled summer. Now, I am decidedly NOT a baseball fan, and I was absolutely glued to Quinnen's story. Her voice is so true, and her wit so sharp, I fell in love by the third page and never looked back. For those of you looking for middle grade reads that touch on the serious parts of life but do ...more
Dee
Jun 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Wow. There was so much I loved about this truly beautiful story.

This book was filled with so much heart and emotion. Quinnen and her cast of characters easily won me over and I absolutely loved getting to know them. Every one of them brought something important to the story. Baseball plays a big role and is woven in so well. I think my favorite thing of all was the way the story was told. Bishop seamlessly alternates between Last Summer and This Summer, showing us Quinnen's life as it was and as
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Ruth Lehrer
Jun 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Such a well written, sweet story! Totally believable characters. A total non-jock, this touching story almost made me want to play baseball. Perfect for me - a great glossary at the end for the baseball impaired.
Christina Hanson
Apr 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I love any books about sports, and The Distance to Home by Jenn Bishop hit a home run in my book! It was even set in Illinois and mentions the Cubs! What a great story about baseball, family, friendship, and forgiveness! I can't wait for you to meet Quinnen, Casey, Hailey, Hector, and the others when this comes out in June!
Janet McNally
Feb 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful examination of grief and the ways it ties us to the past. Quinnen's voice was compelling and realistic, and the past/present alternating chapters were the perfect way to tell this story. I love sister stories, and this one did not disappoint. Jenn Bishop gives us a fully realized relationship, and the aftermath of a terrible loss. The story has heart and humor, and a lot of baseball for good measure. Highly recommended!
Mike Grosso
Jun 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The thing about loss is it's unfixable. You don't heal so much as you live on, fighting through the grief and hoping there's a black and blue happiness on the other side.

THE DISTANCE TO HOME shows a particularly complicated path to healing for a lovable character who's trying as hard as she can to make sense of a family that used to be four and is now only three. Bishop tells this amazing, heartfelt, and funny story alongside something I'd never heard of prior to reading -- minor league baseball
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Stacey
Mar 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This bittersweet narrative bounces between Quinnen's current summer and the summer prior, her sister's last summer before she passes away.

Quinnen abandons baseball when she loses her sister Haley. She spends the next summer learning that it's okay to have hope and try again. By learning to forgive and embrace those around her she finally begins to make her own way through the grieving process.

Must have for grades 5 and up. It would be a great piece for addressing character growth and theme.
Nicole Otting
Mar 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book appealed to me right away with the baseball element but the story was so much more.
Quinnen lost her sister Haley last summer and is spending most of the current summer trying to find a new normal. Things are different with her parents; they don't talk like they used to, she's not playing baseball this year, and the Farm team-the Bandits is in town this summer along with a hot shot for a new housemate. This book bounces between last summer and this summer which introduces an interestin
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Jonah Lisa Dyer
Jan 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Got a review ARC of this book but my 10 year old son nabbed it right off my TBR stack! Will update to include my review at a later date. Until then, this is what the book's target audience had to say...

"It's one of the better books I've read, actually. There were lots of missing pieces at the beginning that clicked in like a big puzzle by the end. I really liked how the chapters switched back and forth between this summer and last summer. It had sad parts, but happy parts from last summer too, a
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Fafa's Book Corner
Mini review:

I received this E-ARC via Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

To be honest I didn't want to read this book. At this age in my life I avoid a lot of middle contemporaries because I find them to be stupid. I requested this on a whim and was surprised by how much I liked it. I think my favourite part was the portrayal of Haley. In most of the flashbacks she was horrible. But I found it realistic because despite the fact that she is dead Quinnen remembers the go
...more
Scott Fillner
Mar 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A wonderfully crafted story that parallels two summers. One might think that could make a story choppy. However, Jenn does an amazing job of making those transitions seamless. If you are looking for a story about recovering from loss, friendship, family, and second chances...I would highly recommend this story.
Erin Teagan
May 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Loved this sweet book about loss and forgiveness and healing. Taking place the summer after her older sister's death, we meet Quinnen in the throws of her pain. It's baseball season again and her sister won't be there sitting in her rainbow chair cheering her on. It's heartbreaking, but there is also much hope and joy in the book. Quinnen is a character the reader will want to follow as she makes her way back to what she loves most, baseball.

A must-read for middle grade readers, baseball-lovers
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Michele Knott
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A book that touched my heart. Jenn Bishop crafts a beautiful story about heartbreak while keeping the story true to a middle grader's perspective.
Paul Orsino
Feb 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely LOVED every page of this book. Full review to come!
Faizan
Jun 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing


You never know when you're going to have a big moment until it's happening.
I won the book in Goodreads giveaway, and I thanks to author for sending the advanced reader copy.
This book is surprisingly beautiful and story is simply pleasing. Lots of Baseball.

The best part is Quinnen act to her age. The book I am reading lately has 11 years old protagonist but they behave like a Magnus Bane old. The Book Thief and Eve Green


You can read this review on my site too

In The Distance To Home, this is not happening. Quinnen act as 11 yr. old, behave, react, talk and get angry lik
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Kerry
Mar 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Oh how I loved this beautiful and pitch perfect middle grade about grief and going on. A vivid, redemptive story full of humor and heartbreak and heart with a lovable MC, a fully realized cast of surrounding characters and enough baseball to remind me of the best parts of being a kid. This would have been a well worn and deeply loved book of mine back when I was younger. I highly recommend this one. Just a wonderful healing story.
Janet
Nov 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015
Most excellent, Jenn. Thank you for the ARC. I eagerly await you next book. So proud of you and your talent--and getting a chance to know you.
Laurie
Aug 30, 2015 added it
Shelves: read-in-2016
A beautiful book that balances grief with humor, hope, love, and lots of baseball! THE DISTANCE TO HOME takes place over the course of two summers; chapters alternate between this summer, when Quinnen is grieving her sister Haley's death as she gets to know minor league baseball players who are staying with her family and other local families, and last summer, when Haley was still alive and Quinnen was still playing on her own baseball team. I love that Quinnen is a girl who plays on a baseball ...more
Dylan Teut
Mar 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
When I read the first chapter of this book, I thought, "Oh man, not another story about sibling death." (I lost my sister in December '14), and I had just read several sad stories. I wasn't sure my heart could handle it, but I decided to move forward. I am glad I did. This is a story full of hope and forgiveness and moving on. Jenn Bishop brings us back and forth between the last summer and the current summer, and the story culminates in a bright ending that reminds us the most freeing thing we ...more
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Jenn Bishop is the author of the middle grade novels 14 Hollow Road and The Distance to Home, which was a Junior Library Guild selection, a Bank Street College Best Children's Book, and an Amazon.com Editor's pick. She grew up in New England, where she fell in love with the ocean, Del’s frozen lemonade, and the Boston Red Sox before escaping to college at the University of Chicago. After working a ...more