Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Living at the Edge of the World: How I Survived in the Tunnels of Grand Central Station” as Want to Read:
Living at the Edge of the World: How I Survived in the Tunnels of Grand Central Station
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Living at the Edge of the World: How I Survived in the Tunnels of Grand Central Station

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  183 ratings  ·  25 reviews
A searing, true story right out of 1980s New York City: During the height of the crack cocaine epidemic, with AIDS and homelessness raging out of control, a young woman survives four years living in the tunnels of Grand Central Station.
Sixteen year old Tina S. leaves behind her dysfunctional family to join her new friend, April, a wild and charismatic teenage runaway, liv
Paperback, 283 pages
Published October 12th 2001 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published October 6th 2001)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.16  · 
Rating details
 ·  183 ratings  ·  25 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Living at the Edge of the World: How I Survived in the Tunnels of Grand Central Station
One World: Tina S. (New York. c. 1986) Magpies, North Ridge (Westminster, CO. 2020)

Living at the Edge of the World is a story about a young girl who lived underground (mostly) for five years, in New York City, from 1986 to 1990. In her own words (mostly) with the help of journalist, Jamie Pastor Bolnick.

President Donald Trump recently said he wants to put a woman on the moon and a man on Mars, in his next term. Those are great goals. I'd like to see homelessness ended, especially for children. W
Nov 12, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: self-help
What can I say about this book? This was kind of a gem that I happened to run into. Saying that I enjoyed this book would be a little cruel; some stories are not made to be read with comfort.

Living at the Edge of the World is a story about how life can turn your world upside down. It's inevitable not to feel pain; when every step you take allows for mistakes and lessons to be learned. I myself have gone through a lot of hardship in my life, and I hope that I have learned from the adventures I ha
Aug 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Amazing book. A must read!
Jade Arnaud
Dec 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
The book Living at the Edge of the World by Jamie Pastor bolnick is an amazing book to read. I suggest the book to teens I need or in shelters and also to anyone in the world because it gives them a real life perspective on a teen life of being homeless and having a rough family.

In this book you learn about a character named Tina. Tina left her house when she was in her teenage years she began to sleep in the trains and she fell into deep drugs. In the book you read about all the struggles she
Mar 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Judy
Recommended to Cynthia by: the library
This book is incredible! It is the story of one woman's journey down to the depths of drug addiction, homelessness and poverty, living as a teenager in the tunnels of Grand Central Station, through rehab and ultimately after a ten-year struggle, to making a life for herself and a way in the world as a more whole person. As far as I can tell, Tina S. is probably about my age (40) and we have led such radically different lives, largely because I had a supportive, stable homelife with two parents, ...more
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this for school and really enjoyed it. I loved reading about Tina's journey and her friendships with all of the people who helped her with her struggles of being homeless and being a drug addict. I also really like how they show in this book how being homeless does not mean just someone without a shelter. In the book Tina had several places she used as a shelter, but there is a difference between a shelter and a home. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars. ...more
May 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book showing the many sides of homelessness from mental issues, sexual abuse and working their way out! Such a crazy thought to think that there's a whole underground community of kids, women & men. #Nocturnal ...more
Dec 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
New York City is a melting pot for human race; every creed, color, religion, societal status. I often wonder how someone could end up homeless, living life on the edge of tomorrow, not knowing where their next meal will come from or how they will stay warm. I've seen adults lying on stoops, dragging bags behind them, dirty and withdrawn. Not living in the city, but a frequent visitor, I understand that when someone panhandles they are most likely going to use the money for their next high and no ...more
McKenzie Richardson
I received this book through Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.

There are so many things I like about this book, I don't even know where to start.

For starters, Tina S.'s story is one that is not only interesting, but eye opening as well. The account is written with such brutal honesty about the ups and downs of her life. She is easy to empathize with, even when she does things the reader may not agree with. Overall, Tina S. seems like a very likable and smart person, which really comes o
Jul 25, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this before and while I accompanied my youth group on an inner-city mission trip. So much of what Tina S. related in this book was reinforced by the speaker from the Cincinnati Coalition for the Homeless who came to our community house one evening. Homeless people do not want to feel that they are invisible (who does?). But most of us don't even notice them and just walk past, not really looking at them or speaking to them. Even if we do give them some money or food, we do not address the ...more
Wow, what a life to lead. Teenagers have it rough in general, but some are so confused if this is the kind of life they lead. And to continue to lead it is sad. The drugs, the violence, the hopelessness that they experience is unimaginable. And some, if they aren't killed by it, go on to live this way for years.
I like that the book is written first person, yet almost seems clinical and cold. I imagine that might be the only way to keep ones perspective. I am glad Tina was able to find her way,
Dec 28, 2008 rated it really liked it
I didn't think I'd like it when I first picked it up. I probably wouldn't have picked it up on my own either. But it was surprisingly good. There were times that I had to stop and think, "This is non-fiction?" It's an amazing tale of how someone hit rock bottom and got back up from it, more than once actually. It's a taste of reality that shows even those that are young have stories of strength that are worth being told. ...more
Natalie Pietro
This book was so moving. Its a true story about a young girl who's homeless trying to survive in the tunnels of grand central station. Its so sad what she goes thought. Bugs, creepy men, drugs, friends. Its so hard to read yet at the same time you just can't put it down. I wish I still had this book. Let my friend read it and never got it back. Damn the book I would really love to read again. Guess its time to buy a new one. ...more
Jul 06, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: teen-books
It's been awhile since I've read this one, but it was a true story about a girl who lived in the tunnels of Grand Central station in New York. She left home, because it wasn't a good environment, got involved in drugs and ended up in a community of homeless teens. It follows her through her path off of the streets. Good story, but lots of difficult situations. For older teens. ...more
Apr 14, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Picked this one up off a display at the library. Some parts were surprisingly funny, but overall it was a sad story. People lead really sad lives. The girl in the book managed to get out, which was great. I'd like to read an update on how she's doing now. ...more
Sandy Costanza
Jan 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What an amazing story.Drug addiction is a journey through such murky water and being able to come out on the other side is heroic. The tunnels as well as the homeless wandering sounds very frightening. I wish a continued life of happiness, health and love for Tina. Thank you for sharing your story.
Sep 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this account by TIna S. It's brutally honest, but a really wonderful story that makes you root for her all the way. Gave me a real sense of what life was like in New York's Grand Central in the 80s. ...more
Sep 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Truly insightful to a world and way of life have never thought of truly existed. This story was very well written, easily understood, and not to mention emotional on so many levels.
Mar 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jul 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is one of my all time favorite books and a keeper for me. Truly amazing story of a life I never dreamed of, much less one I gave a thought to. This book has opened my eyes to another world.
Jan 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Loved it
Sep 06, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was ok. Very realistic I think to hanging out homeless and taking drugs.

Which of course, is not very glamorous or engaging.

It was a bit depressing.
Aug 02, 2014 rated it liked it
I would have rated it higher if the non-linear storytelling were easier to figure out. Otherwise, a compelling narrative into drug addiction and homelessness.
Kate Struthers
rated it it was amazing
Jun 23, 2014
rated it it was amazing
Jul 30, 2014
Crystal Rook
rated it it was amazing
May 13, 2017
rated it it was amazing
Jul 24, 2013
Joyce Anne Grabel
rated it liked it
Feb 26, 2008
rated it really liked it
Jul 22, 2011
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Play It As It Lays
  • Nothing to Lose (Jack Reacher, #12)
  • An Anthropology of Images: Picture, Medium, Body
  • Material Witness (Butch Karp, #5)
  • Justice Denied (Butch Karp, #7)
  • No Lesser Plea (Butch Karp, #1)
  • Uprooted: How Breslau Became Wroclaw During the Century of Expulsions
  • Anywhere But Here (Mayan Stevenson, #1)
  • A Dog Year: Twelve Months, Four Dogs, and Me
  • Katz on Dogs: A Commonsense Guide to Training and Living with Dogs
  • A Dog's Ransom
  • Out of the Deep I Cry (Rev. Clare Fergusson & Russ Van Alstyne Mysteries, #3)
  • Reversible Error (Butch Karp, #4)
  • Girl in Translation
  • A Good Dog: The Story of Orson, Who Changed My Life
  • The Man Who Ate the 747
  • Darwin, His Daughter, and Human Evolution
  • Depraved Indifference (Butch Karp, #2)
See similar books…

News & Interviews

These twelve books are so consistently adored, they have become regulars month after month in our data of most popular and most read books on...
134 likes · 49 comments