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Charlie and Me: 421 Miles From Home
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Charlie and Me: 421 Miles From Home

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  311 ratings  ·  83 reviews
Thirteen-year-old Martin and his younger brother Charlie are on a very special journey. They're going to be travelling 421 miles all the way from Preston to the very tip of Cornwall. By train, bus and taxi, they are determined to get there in the end; and they're hoping to catch a glimpse of the dolphin that regularly visits the harbour there. But is that the only reason ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published January 11th 2018 by Piccadilly Press
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Average rating 4.37  · 
Rating details
 ·  311 ratings  ·  83 reviews


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Sophie Crane
Aug 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: giveaway
Lowery has impressed me in the past, filling his family-centred stories with humour (Socks are Not Enough) and pathos, in stories that will pique the interest of primary-aged readers.

This novel features a wonderful pairing - brothers Martin and Charlie, a young teen and his younger brother who have, apparently, run away from home to travel more than 400 miles to Cornwall, where they are hoping to see the dolphin they saw on a family holiday.

Their determination is puzzling - just what
...more
Linda Lipko
Oct 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A very heart rendering story of a brother who decides to try to replicate a family vacation one year ago. Leaving the house, without telling his parents, he navigates to Cornwall, England via a series of train stops.

Wanting to arrive at his destination to show his little brother the dolphin that he was so mesmerized with on their vacation, he vows to get there on time to once again show Charlie the dolphin one again.

This is a wonderful book filled with marvelous characters. I laughed and cried.
...more
Wayward Fancy
Oct 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
I would give this book a charillion stars if I could. It is a beautiful book with the most delightfully endearing characters, wonderful pace, structure and storytelling that gets under your skin. Heartbreaking, funny, life affirming and brilliant. Everything you could want from a book.
Hannah Symonds
Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thought this would make a change to the books I had been reading and it did. This is the story of Martin and his younger brother Charlie who decide to go on a journey like no other. I love how the book is set out with Martin's poems and the lined pages like it really is a book. There are some funny parts to the story but it also deals with some more personal issues which have been dealt with in a sympathetic way. This is a short story and I managed to read it within an hour. I will be looking ...more
Ciaran Mills
Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The first thing I did after reading this book was hug my brother... Well actually, that's a lie, the very first thing I did was lock myself in the bathroom and cry for a good twenty minutes

This has to be one of the most magnificent books I've ever read. Not just "kid's books" but books full stop.

One of the most telling signs is that I predicted the ending about 100 pages out and it still evoked that much emotion from me! The storytelling from Mark Lowery is splendid, everything feels deliberate.
...more
Eleanor Bull
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Oh wow! What a good book. I really wasn’t expecting it to end like it did...no spoilers! The characters were perfect, and it was fast paced and interesting to read. I loved how it flipped back and forth between past and present, and the poetry. So many issues were covered in this book, but in a subtle and clever way.
Trish Hills
Mar 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I didn't expect to love this book quite so much. But I also hated it becausw it made me ugly cry. It is so beautifully and tenderly written. It is funny, poignant, sweet, sad and full of childhood innocence. I adored Martin and Charlie and their journey.
Martina
Apr 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Just a suggestion: don't read this book in a public place if you have a heart, or you will end up sobbing in a uncontrollable way.
Graine Milner
Dec 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katie Greenwood
Apr 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
First of all a big thank-you to the wonderful people over at Piccadilly Press for contacting me about this little gem!

I've always been a believer that there's no such thing as being too old for a book. It's something I find myself constantly reiterating both at work and online. Just because you're older than the target market for a book doesn't mean you shouldn't read it, nor does it somehow suggest you aren't smart. I'm a twenty-one year old Literature Student and bookseller. Am I still going
...more
Kate
May 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Told from the point of view of 13 year old Martin, Charlie and Me: 421 Miles Away From Home is a superb book that deals with many issues.
Charlie is ten, and his brain is "inside-out" according to him. Born prematurely with a slim chance of survival, he has been plagued with health issues and learning difficulties his whole life. That doesn't stop him living it to the highest though, and there are several humorous instances that highlight this. Have no doubt about it, Charlie is a lively, funny,
...more
Ms. Yingling
May 04, 2018 rated it liked it
ARC provided by publisher



Martin and his younger brother Charlie had such a fantastic time on their family vacation to Cornwall. They hung out with their parents, ate fun food, and saw dolphins frolicking in the sea. Back home in Northern England, things have changed since then, with Mom being depressed and Dad being distant, so Martin decides to take Charlie back to the coast. Armed with a stolen tin of Christmas cookies, his back pack, and just enough money for a ticket, the two board a train
...more
Meghan
Jul 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Remember in previous reviews how I noticed that kids are surprisingly good at breaking and entering? Well they’re also good at traveling cross-country without adult supervision.

Thirteen-year-old Martin taking his little brother Charlie on a fantastic weekend getaway 421 miles south to Cornwall, England, to see a dolphin! The catch: their parents don’t know.

But it’s such a sweet premise! Especially considering that their family can’t often afford fancy holidays and lately Dad’s been working
...more
Katy Noyes
Dec 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Very moving tale of two brothers

Lowery has impressed me in the past, filling his family-centred stories with humour (Socks are Not Enough) and pathos, in stories that will pique the interest of primary-aged readers.

This novel features a wonderful pairing - brothers Martin and Charlie, a young teen and his younger brother who have, apparently, run away from home to travel more than 400 miles to Cornwall, where they are hoping to see the dolphin they saw on a family holiday.

Their determination is
...more
Lisa Bentley
Feb 23, 2019 rated it liked it
Oh my days. What a beautifully emotional story.

I bought seven copies of Charlie and Me: 421 Miles from Home. You may think “Seven? That’s a bit excessive.” Let me explain. I run a book club for my students and this book is on the Carnegie Long List for 2019 and I am trying to get through as many of them as possible before the short list is announced.

I gave it to my students having only read two chapters but I was enchanted already. This story of brotherly love was so funny and sweet and
...more
Seawood
I received this as a free ARC ebook via NetGalley. This does not affect my review.

Aaah, this is such a gorgeous story! I laughed my head off in the beginning and needed a box of tissues by the end. Mark Lowery has created such a wonderful, tender big brother in Martin and a riotous kid in prematurely-born Charlie. It is absolutely heartbreaking to follow their journey and the angels they meet along the way (I am desperately trying not to spoiler here!), but despite that, it's strangely uplifting
...more
WhatBookNext .com
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Martin is taking his younger brother on a journey, by train, foot, taxi – in fact any way possible, as long as they get there before dusk. The only problem is that they have crept out of the house before their parents have woken, taken something precious from the house and left Martin’s cellphone behind – on purpose.

Martin knows there will be challenges. Charlie is excitable, intelligent, unpredictable and according to Martin, his best friend. It’s a long way and he has to look out for Charlie
...more
Sarah Seddon
Jun 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a really beautiful story told from the heart. Martin is on a long railway journey with his younger brother Charlie to visit the dolphin in St Bernards in Cornwall. Why has Martin run away from home, leaving his phone behind, with only money for the journey and a couple of packets of biscuits? Why does he not buy a ticket for Charlie and seem to be encouraging his brother to hide from the ticket-collector? All is not what it seems. Martin is helped in his endeavours by fellow passenger ...more
Eve beinguniquebooks
May 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In this book we meet Martin struggling with his family and the state they're in, his mum is depressed and a shadow of her former self whilst their dad is working all hours of the day.



So with a plan to go back down to St Bernards in Cornwall where they had their last family holiday and were happy, especially Charlie as he loved seeing the local dolphin, he and Charlie sneak off one morning to travel by train down there alone.



Through escaping the police and deterring attention from them they meet
...more
Barbara Band
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Martin sets off early one morning with his younger brother to travel from their home in Preston to Cornwall - to revisit the scene of last year's holiday where every day a dolphin came into the harbour. But there's more to the trip than this … a secret that is forcing Martin to push on, despite panic attacks, spending all his money on tickets and the police on his trail.

The story is told in two parts. Martin and Charlie's trip with all it's mishaps alongside last year's holiday. Throughout the
...more
Beth Mendelsohn
Oct 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a fantastic story! I will keep this review short so as not to reveal any spoilers. Martin, age 13, is traveling by train with his brother Charlie, age 10, from the northern part of England 421 miles to Cornwall in the south. Martin’s character narrates the story but the reason for their journey is not initially clear. Their last family vacation was to Cornwall where the highlight of the trip for Charlie was seeing a wild dolphin in the harbor. They are traveling back to see the dolphin but ...more
Christopher Squire
Jan 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My class and I love the Roman Garstang series of books and when I saw this I knew I had to read it. I will limit my review to the facts... this book is equal parts gut bustingly funny and utterly tragic. Moving and mature with a narrator who truly comes across as a child. Lowery's skill lies in his ability to write truthful childlike dialogue and characters. Fantastic writing. Another genius piece.
Elise m
Jan 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Liesl
Jun 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
A road-trip story that's by turns hilarious and heartbreaking. I love the cast of characters, especially Charlie: he's such a vibrant personality, it's hard not to be amused by his antics. I liked how the story was broken up into the different legs of their journey too with the number of miles travelled listed. The twist took me by surprise and the ending was beautiful.
Jane Wilson
Aug 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a surprising and lovely book. Beautifully written with characters you are instantly drawn to, the story created between those short pages is beautifully developed. Loved the poems. An inspiring read which all young adults should read x
Laura
Jul 25, 2018 rated it liked it
I'm probably not the right reader for this book. I typically enjoy YA books more than middle-grade books. Having said that, this book was very entertaining and I had trouble putting it down. Recommended for 8-12 year olds.
Anja
Dec 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
THIS BOOK IS SO GOOD OH MY GOSH. I HAVE NO WORDS. I FREAKING LOVED THIS BOOK. I LOVE THE BROTHERLY LOVE AND THE PLOT AND THE CHARACTERS AND EVERYTHING. IT WAS SO HEARTWARMING YET SAD AND WONDERFUL AT THE SAME TIME. OH MY GOSH.
Amber Pockelé
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely mesmerizing!
Kim Skwira hoffmann
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What an adventure! Great book with a heartwarming ending.
Frances
Apr 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Moving but humorous.
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NZ Intermediate S...: Charlie and Me: 421 Miles From Home 3 14 Mar 12, 2018 03:43PM  

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Mark Lowery is the author of seven books for children and young adults, including "Charlie and Me - 421 Miles From Home" and the Roman Garstang Adventures.

Both of his first two books - "Socks Are Not Enough" and "Pants Are Everything" - were shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize. "Socks Are Not Enough" was longlisted for the Branford Boase Award, and also won the Leeds Book of The Year Award
...more