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Can't Get There from Here

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  2,656 ratings  ·  317 reviews
Her street name is Maybe. She lives with a tribe of homeless teens -- runaways and throwaways, kids who have no place to go other than the cold city streets, and no family except for one another. Abused, abandoned, and forgotten, they struggle against the cold, hunger, and constant danger.

With the frigid winds of January comes a new girl: Tears, a twelve-year-old whose m

Paperback, 208 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published 2004)
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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,656 ratings  ·  317 reviews

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Lisa Litberg
Jan 23, 2009 rated it liked it
"Maggot said we should go up to Times Square to watch the ball drop and pick some pockets, but we never got around to it."

I have always been fascinated with homeless street kids, ever since I went to Portland in 1994 where there was an abundance of them. I became rather close to one named Dave, who used to wear safety pins in his eyebrows so that they hung over his eyes. They reminded me of tears. You see these "street punks" everywhere: Bourbon Street in New Orleans, The Haight in San Francisco
Jan 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: teens
A group of homeless teens band together to help each other survive on the streets of New York. The narrator, Maybe, left her abusive mother and feels that the street--dirty , cold, and brutal as it is--is the only place for a girl like her, a girl no one loves.

Maggot says that living on the streets is the only way to maintain your freedom. Country Club is the first of the group to leave. He dies of liver failure at 22. OG has a constant, hacking cough, but refuses to seek medical attention. He
Nov 26, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Nobody
Recommended to Lulu by: Mrs. Platt
I had to read this book for Literacy and basically, it sucked. One to many people die and since it is about homeless kids, it is a little disturbing.
Apr 01, 2013 rated it liked it
This was ok. It was interesting because it was one of the first books about life on the streets as narrated by a girl. Not that it's really obvious, however, it was different. Much of the book was comprised of "I'm hungry and cold because I don't have food and it's cold". Strasser is very good at packing a punch with all of his books about difficult issues (school shootings, street life), and I think the most influential part was the reports about the death of several street kids that the main c ...more
Chase H
Dec 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Living on the street with six other homeless teens it not a good way to grow up. The main character lives on very minimal resources and has had very little schooling or discipline. The main character has a rare skin condition where her skin is unevenly pigmented and has patches of darker and lighter skin all over her body. She was kicked out of her house by an abusive mother that only wanted her if she could provide drugs or alcohol. She lives on the street with 2Moro, Rainbow, Tears, OG, Jewels ...more
Feb 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Can't get anywhere from here was a great book! It was about this girl who lived on the streets of New York City because she has no one to go to. She has no family left. She found a couple of street kids and they kind of just stuck together. They all are not friends but just other street kids who stick together so they do not die or make a bad decision. A new kid would join their group every month or so and they got food together, and they survived together. Or tried to anyway. But towards the en ...more
Amy Snyder
Apr 07, 2010 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kara Walker
Jul 14, 2013 rated it it was ok
In Can't Get There From Here, Strasser tells the tale of a homeless girl named Maybe who lives in New York City. Her life is full of abuse, mistrust, and sadness, but she finds a way to persevere through all the pain. Maybe considers herself a part of a "tribe" (others who are homeless with her). In this tribe, the members try to look out for one another and act as a makeshift family. Unfortunately almost all of the characters have a sad ending: "They were gone. Tears, Rainbow, Maggot, Jewel, 2M ...more
this amazing book is about a group of homeless teenagers known as the asphalt tribe. and they have ran away from their personal and other situtations and came to liv on the streets of nyc. they survive by dealing drugs, washing windshields, and being prostitutes. most of the kids in the tribe have ran away b/c of they're mothers, and drugs. they do whatever it takes to survive the cold winter in nyc.
i can connect this to the world b/c their are actually people in this world who are homeless eve
Apr 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
this book is amazing!!!
its about a girl named maybe who lives on the cold streets of NYC. she has a friend named Tears who is 12 years old. maybe figures out after a bunch of experiences that the streets are really not the place to be so she tries to help tears get home.
i loved this book because it was a happy-unperfect ending. it gave you a shock to what life on the streets is like and what innocent people are dealing with...
i would recommend this book to everyone but more likely to readers who
Mar 10, 2009 rated it it was ok
This is a book I will add to a literature circle because it is a subject I think will hook kids. The story was a little repetitive giving a play by play of events in the live of homeless kids and then the ending just all worked out for everyone but the main character and we really don't know what happens to her.

Still, it's new and something that would get my kids talking and even parts they may relate to unfortunately.
Oct 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed reading this book. The book was about the life of homeless teens living on the streets of New York. It is a realistic fiction story that made me think about the people that are homeless in our country and the struggles they go threw just to get food and to stay warm. I would say everyone should read this book because of how much it opens your eyes to the life of some people in our country that we just forget about.
Leah Vener
Jan 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was an amazing book. No part of this book was boring. I liked how the main events were so developed and detailed it made you feel as if you were there with the characters. I would recommend this book to anyone who would like to read an eye opening story. I would rate this a 5 out of 5 because I could not put this book down.
Oct 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book Todd Strasser has this mind that just seems to captivate my interests. I loved living the life of the streets in New York.
Jun 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-3
One of my alltime favorite books I've ever read. i loved how REAL the story was, i read it in 1 day it was so good. ...more
Richie Partington
Jul 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
27 January 2004 CAN'T GET THERE FROM HERE by Todd Strasser, Simon & Schuster, April 2004, ISBN 0-689-84169-8

"Come says Jack let's knock him on the head
No says Guy let's buy him some bread"

" 'I'm so gross! I'm disgusting! I can't stand it!' Rainbow laughed crazily as she pulled me down the sidewalk about a block from Canal Street.
" 'You look beautiful to me,' I said.
" 'Oh, Maybe, what would you know? You're even smellier and dirt
Feb 16, 2012 is currently reading it
All over New York there are street kids that have nowhere to go. They have been abandoned, abuse, and forgotten. They have no one left but one another. Little by little each one is disappearing. Maybe is her street name has been neglected by her mother. She and seven others face some horrible conditions. She’s been through a lot, but more is to come for her as days pass by. Tears is a new girl to the group who was abused by her stepfather has no one to go to. The only hope she has is Maybe , bu ...more
Natasha Marks
Oct 22, 2012 rated it liked it
the book Can't Get There From Here is about a family of homeless teens lives on the streets of New York City, and their struggles of their lives is, clear early on when Country Club dies of "liver failure due to acute alcohol poisoning." His brief life is summarized in a one-page" he states. As they soon realize there is a new girl named maybe she has been sent there because of her family not trusting her. As she meets her gang they know she is not fit for the streets. Convinces Maybe to get off ...more
Sam Tanner
I loved this book it had lost of things that I like, based off of real world things. It had many twists in the story which may have gotten confusing but I really liked the book. I can read it over and over and it will not get old. Only If i can find more books like this.

This is one of those books where it makes non-readers such as myself want to read more and more. I couldn't put this book down at night. Every page you turn there is something new and you want to know more about it. I like how t
Jan 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This may be one of the best books I've read in a while. "Can't Get There From Here" is a realistic and semi-dark book which demonstrates the poor and extreme conditions of living in the streets through the perspective of a girl who ran away from her family called "Maybe", who suffers with a skin condition in which her skin is patched with different skin tones. The book itself hosts a diverse cast of characters such as "2Moro", "Maggot", and "OG". As the book starts out light, it slowly reveals t ...more
Jan 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
Maybe lives on the streets with a tribe of homeless teens. These kids are runaways and throwaways, they have no place to go except cold city streets and have no family other than each other. They are abused, abandoned, and forgotten by society, every day they struggle to survive against the cold, hunger, and constant danger. But now there is a new girl, Tears, a 12 year old whose mother didn’t believe she had been abused by her stepfather. As the other kids start to disappear from violence, addi ...more
Jun 04, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I just finished Can't Get There From Here by Todd Strasser and wow what a bummer book----the kids will love it! It is about homeless teens in New York that consider themselves a tribe, don't trust anyone but their friends in the tribe and sleep and eat whatever and wherever. They have names like Maybe, Country Club, Rainbow and 2Moro, are hungry, dirty and very cold since it takes place in the winter. Their lives on the streets really eats at you, you want them to get out and live, but instead t ...more
Oct 01, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After reading Give a Boy a Gun,
I decided to see if Todd Strasser had any other books that may be just as good,
I was not disappointed.
In fact, Can't Get There from Here was even better.
I remember I stayed up all night reading it and had to fake sick the next day because I was so tired haha.
I couldn't sleep without knowing what happened next!
I will definately buy this to add to my bookshelf (:
Big Joe  Rossi
Aug 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
what a compelling look at life on the streets for a bunch of homeless kids. A girl nicknamed maybe is the lead character and she is easy to fall in love with, sweet but tough, she cares deeply for the 'friends' she's made on the street.
This book is heart breaking and a some what accurate portrayal of what being a homeless kids must be like. Having been born and raised in NYC I've encountered many of these kids. Early on my parents explained and drilled into me that yrs they may be drug addicts
Sep 26, 2014 rated it liked it
Maybe,the main carrictor,was abused by her mother so she decided to run away(her mother still hates her)and she allways had a man then a baby and the man would leave so the mothere would allways take her anger out on maybe,She has become a street kid with a bunch of others she found and.Many people try to offer them shelter and they refuse but they do take money if people offer.The group of would find beds to sleep on and if they had to but they would nomaly find food,sudunley the group startes ...more
Kate McCartney
Dec 14, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teen-fiction
This was a heartbreaking look at how homeless teenagers live when they think they have no other choice than living on the streets. Maybe lives on the streets of New York City with a "family" of other teens. Some as young as 12 who sell themselves to eat, buy drugs, and have something that resembles a bit of normalcy. Even the street kids want to hang out in clubs and party and they find ways to do that. Maybe loses all of her "family" mostly to death but there is one of her friends who finds her ...more
This is a very quick read. It feels very real. I have never lived on the streets, and I sure as shit hope I never do, but I kinda feel like I have now. Maybe is a character that lets you in, but she is simply telling it like it is. She doesn't complain about her life, its just her life. You watch as her friends disappear and die around her and wonder who is next. Its heartbreaking how easy it is for kids to get abused, left on their own and forgotten, with no one to care about them. Its a shame ...more
Aug 31, 2011 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book for many reasons. First it had real life experiences in it and I could really relate to if that was me. It was ongoing of hard times. It opens your eyes to the street life. Some kids may think that it is easy to live on the street and it is a good life. But this book shows how younger kids get taken advantage of just because they need food. Another thing was the age of the children. The kids in the book were from age 14-21. So overall there was not a boring part in thi ...more
Aug 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, read-2012
Maybe is a homeless teen trying to survive on the streets of New York City, the only constant in her life being the other homeless teens who are in the same boat as Maybe. A couple deaths occur amongst the group members and Maybe fears that may be her future. A kindly librarian offers clothing and a safe place to warm up, and even helps reunite one of Maybe’s friends with family members. Todd Strasser delivers a no-holds-barred look at life on the street through the eyes of a girl whose immediat ...more
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
What's the Name o...: SOLVED. Mid 2000s YA about runaway girl befriending local homeless teens. One guy had a pitbull named Flea I think. They feel betrayed... [s] 6 20 Mar 19, 2019 12:33PM  
Theme 2 5 Oct 01, 2014 06:31AM  
Conflict 1 2 Sep 27, 2014 09:14PM  
Place 1 1 Sep 27, 2014 09:10PM  
Connection 1 1 Sep 27, 2014 09:04PM  
Characterization 1 3 Sep 27, 2014 08:52PM  
Maybe 2 12 Mar 22, 2013 11:31AM  

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Todd Strasser is an American author of more than 130 novels for adults, young-adults, and middle graders.

His most recent novel is Summer of '69

Booklist review: "Drugs, sex, and rock 'n' roll, those hallmarks of the summer of 1969, are all here, but there's so much more. In this loosely autobiographical novel, Strasser introduces 18-year-old Lucas, who is bright and sensitive but also a screw up….

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  As dedicated readers already know, some of the best and most innovative stories on the shelves come from the constantly evolving realm of...
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