Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Going Nowhere Faster” as Want to Read:
Going Nowhere Faster
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Going Nowhere Faster

3.53  ·  Rating details ·  348 ratings  ·  54 reviews
Stan Smith has the world's dullest name, and the world's dullest life to go with it. At 17, the former junior chess champion turned "Town's Laziest Register Monkey at the Town's Only Video Store" has no car, no college, and, of course, no girl. If that weren't pathetic enough, he's got an organic-food-freak vegan mother, an eccentric inventor father, a dead-end job, a dog ...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Little, Brown Young Readers
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

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

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Going Nowhere Faster, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Going Nowhere Faster

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.53  · 
Rating details
 ·  348 ratings  ·  54 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Going Nowhere Faster
What you need to know about Stan Smith
1.Stan Smith hates his name.
2.Stan Smith has just graduated from high school.
3.Although Stan Smith has a genius IQ, Stan Smith is not an outstanding student. In fact, Stan Smith is not going to college.
4.Stan Smith works at Happy Video, which is not really happy at all. But, then again, neither is Stan Smith.
5.Stan Smith is working on a screen play. And by working on I mean he’s writing treatments, which he later reads and decides are stupid.
6.Stan Smith is
Eric Townsend
Feb 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
Going Nowhere Faster has all the classics of a teen movie where the loser guy that is smart but awkward socially and doesn’t have anything going for him likes a girl who doesn’t seem to care. Boring and overdone right? Wrong! The difference here is that the girl doesn’t stay in her “I’m perfect just like you imagined me to be” shell. The best friend turns out to kinda be a douchenozzle even though in the end it doesn’t really matter because woohoo friendship! Also don’t forget that someone wants ...more
Sam Mason
Mar 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Name: Sam Mason

Book Title: Going Nowhere Faster

Personal Response: I think this was a good book because it was really relatable and had great detail. It is an easier book to read and isn’t very complicated, but some parts were a little confusing. It ended well, but not how I predicted it would. This book also had a lot of funny moments, too.

Plot Summary: The main character, Stan, is a basic teenage boy that worked at a home video store. He only had a few friends and his boss was a kind of a douch
Booklover Butterfly
Dec 30, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
Going Nowhere Faster by Sean Beaudoin is a young adult novel about a 17 year old boy, Stan Smith, who is searching for a direction in life. He lives in a small town and works at the local video rental store. Stan happens to be a gifted, highly intelligent guy, but he doesn’t yearn for the traditional educational experience of college. Instead, he’s thinking about writing a movie script. The problem is that he can’t seem to come up with a good idea because he has no relevant life experience. Stan ...more
Kellee Moye
Apr 19, 2011 rated it liked it
Recommended to Kellee by: Misty
3.5 probably.

Stan is a genius. He can list all of Sylvester Stallone's movies in backwards alphabetical order, he can do any math problem in his head and he can tell you where any movie is in the video store he works in. Yes. He is a genius and he works at a video store. And Stan is more than aware that this makes him quite far from being cool. However, his dreams do not include college and brilliance which is what everyone else wants him to do; his dream includes screen writing.

Going Nowhere
Oct 09, 2007 rated it did not like it
did not like this book.

i think you have to be under the influence of something to enjoy most of it.

it didn't get better as it went on
and had a predictable ending
Mar 21, 2020 rated it liked it
This was one of the very first books I ever added on Goodreads, back in 2007 -- apparently even before it was published. I don't remember how I learned about it -- it's completely random. But however I learned about it, I remember noticing the author's name was the same as someone I knew growing up. It's not the same person, which I found interesting because it's not like "John Smith" or something, where you expect multiples. Anyway, that's what got it added to my list. When I joined PaperbackSw ...more
Stacey Adams
Feb 04, 2019 rated it it was ok
I appreciated the different style of this book. The scripts and movie lingo throughout were unique. The story itself was not that interesting. The main character was too middle of the road, non commital for me. I did like his quirky parents and his house though. His relationship with his younger sister was nice too. He was selfish and uncaring through so much of the book I didn't really want him to succeed. I didn't care about him. He was too strange and not a very nice person to his friends or ...more
3.5 Stars

What a strange little story. And by strange, I mean borderline surreal at times. Frequently funny, and expert at capturing the frustration and embarrassment of pre-adult independence. Very colorful characters, and a most adorable little sister 🖤, made me unable to put this down. I'd like to read more from him!
Jan 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Going Nowhere Faster is a hysterical, quick-witted novel that takes no risk to get across its humor. Through a 235-page young-adult novel, author Sean Beaudoin uses protagonist Stan Smith as a prop for laughter. Stan is a teenager struggling to stand up for himself in Millville, Pennsylvania as his high IQ of 165 leaves him as a victim for bullying. Though Stan tries not to be smart, his intelligence is always evident with his job at Happy Video. At this video rental store, Stan can name every s ...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for

I'll admit I picked this because of the title, GOING NOWHERE FASTER. Aren't there times when we all feel that way?

Stan Smith has more problems than you can shake a stick at. One problem is his name - "Stan." Who names their kid Stan? But then his parents aren't exactly your normal, run-of-the-mill parents. They are another one of his problems. His dad is a crazy inventor and his mother is an over 6-foot-tall Amazon vegan who attemp
Feb 18, 2014 added it
(review written from the perspective of an 8th grader in 2013)

Reading the summary off the back of the book, I thought it would be a very interesting read; humorous, filled with different characters, and unpredictable.

...and I was correct. For the most part.

1. It was humorous: Stan's script, Stan's lists, and the plot in general (his "war2healthy4u" mother & crazy inventor father, his thinking that Chad Chilton might kill him, etc.)

2. Filled with different characters? Yeah. Almost too much.
a. S
Jun 26, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: 11th-grade
So the whole world thinks that Stan Smith is going to make something of himself when he graduates high school, but the whole world doesn't know that Stan Smith just hasn't got the ambition and the confidence to fulfill his dreams of becoming a movie script writer. Instead of going towards that goal, he has a job in his town at a video store named Happy Video. He is "going nowhere, faster," but when the time comes for him to change his ways, he must turn to another alternative besides working at ...more
May 03, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
This was a truly bizarre book. Stan Smith is working at Happy Video the summer after high school ends. He's a genius, but he's going nowhere. He fears for his life at the hands of Chad Chilton, whose girlfriend he lusts after, and he just doesn't understand his hippie mom and inventor dad. At times, this was hard to follow, simply because it was so unusual. I didn't like how the mystery of the slashed tires and red dolls was solved - it didn't seem very likely to happen in real life. However, St ...more
Jun 21, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: contemporary
Honestly? This book was terrible. Maybe not the worst book I've ever read...maybe. Contrived plot, dull, flat, unlikeable characters, cliche upon cliche, super quirkyrandomlol humor that was cringe-worthy to read. It's like Percy Jackson with every enjoyable aspect removed and the conversational narrative voice trope taken up to eleven. The first person narration was grating, the dialogue was hackneyed, the plot was unbelievable to a fault. Awful book, would not recommend to anyone, hopefully wi ...more
Apr 20, 2012 rated it it was ok
I enjoyed the book's theme, that feeling of hopelessness and resignation. However, the writing was mediocre. The characters, while interesting, were not very likable, though the Stan's problems could certainly be related to. The plot was, again, interesting, but contrived. Stan's voice in the novel got on my nerves after a while, but that's probably because I generally despise the "conversational" narrative voice. There was some appreciable humor. As far as debut novels go, this wasn't horrendou ...more
a 17 year old teen named stan, stan smith works at happy video likes a girl named ellen and a man named chad chilton wants to beat him. later on in the book he doesnt know what to do in his life but just work at happy video. and later he see's ellen making out with his friend, miles a cool yet crazy teen. i could connect this to the book flight by sherman alexie a young man who's life is screwed up and gets into some trouble. i would give this book 5 stars because it is hilarously funny with non ...more
Oct 10, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
This one had me laughing out loud. The story revolves around Stan-don't get started on his name- and what he perceives to be his boring life. But Stan is a budding movie producer and pretty soon his life is hit with some pretty dramatic plot finally getting a date with his crush (wait to you hear what happens) and oh yeah, someone is stalking him. My library labeled this as suspense, I'm not so sure about that, but if you are looking for a laugh riot this is it! ...more
Sep 01, 2012 rated it liked it
This book is good, but it's not as good as John Green. That might be an unfair comparison, but I read this and a Green novel pretty close together this summer, and this has the same angst-y teen drama without quite the amazingly clever characters, keen wit, and sharp dialogue. It's just fine. I have had many students recommend this to me, so it speaks to young teens, and it's far better than a lot of things out there! ...more
May 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book is just so... Weird.
I read a bit about it before I bought the book, and wow, it was nothing I was expecting. It seems like it was written by a cartoon character, I don't know.
I don't think there's a single likable character in this story (maybe Miles?) and the plot is just so confusing. It seemed like the booked tried to be quirky and random, but it just fell flat, didn't work. Didn't like it, wouldn't read it.
Sep 16, 2010 rated it liked it
When I first started this book, I thought that the style--with all the lists and the weird nicknames and the wordplay-for-wordplay's-sake--was going to drive me batty. But either it toned down or I got used to it, because I ended up liking this well enough. It was a bit predictable, but I liked the main character's young sister. ...more
Jay Archer
May 08, 2011 rated it it was ok
it wasnt that great of a book im not saying that it was bad but i dont get the concept of the book i look at the back and read whats going on whats the plot of the book and i cant really see whats going on. its not like abduction where a girl has to find her little brother and make sure that he is safe.
Aug 20, 2012 rated it liked it
Book club book, went to high school with the author (in either my class or a year behind).

Ideas expressed/ Message/ Plot: Growing up super smart and kind of nerdy gets a boy picked on, unmotivated, and insecure. Results in non-decisions and "acting out." Finally grows up and/ or makes a decision.

Easy read, audience is teens, quick wrap-up, everything works out in the end.
Nov 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I LOVE STAN!!! hes like the dorky, video geek that evryone loves. the compulsive liar thing is totally understandable because everyone lies to themselves whether we like it or not. stan is just not affraied to admit it.
Mary MacKintosh
Feb 11, 2011 rated it did not like it
Stanley Smith is 18, brilliant, has low esteem and cannot drive a car and has an odd family living in a quirky house and thinks someone wants to kill him. I thought it was a total waste of my time, but I was sick, and didn't have the energy to throw it across the room, so I finished it. ...more
Brenda Kahn
Aug 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: family, 2012, self-esteem
Dug way, way down deep on the tbr pile for this one. It's quite funny in its sad sack way. Readers who enjoyed Stupid Fast, or Me, Earl and the Dying Girl will enjoy this one. Sorry it took so long to get to. ...more
Matt Stewart
May 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing
best young adult book I've read in years! ...more
Oct 24, 2007 added it
A college friend wrote this.
Crissey Hewitt
Mar 03, 2008 rated it really liked it
Definitely intended for 8th graders but I found it pretty hilarious and I thought it was a good idea to read something intended for the age group that I teach.
Nov 05, 2008 rated it really liked it
This book was really quirky (spelling?) with a fantastic voice from the protaganist, Stan. I seriously reccomend this book!
« previous 1 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Girl Beneath the Sea (Underwater Investigation Unit, #1)
  • Don't Read the Comments
  • Ruinsong
  • The Wanderer
  • The Murder List
  • Find Me
  • Me & Emma
  • A World I Never Made
  • The Running Dream
  • I've Got You Under My Skin (Under Suspicion, #1)
  • The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want
  • Controlling the Dangerous Classes: A History of Criminal Justice in America
  • Rip Van Winkle
  • Chinese Cinderella: The True Story of an Unwanted Daughter
  • The Last Juror
  • The Bail Book: A Comprehensive Look at Bail in America's Criminal Justice System
  • Impeachment: An American History
See similar books…
Sean Beaudoin is the author of five Young Adult novels, including the rude zombie love story The Infects, and the black comedy rock and roll love story Wise Young Fool. Sean likes love stories almost as much as he loves to talk about himself in the third person. Welcome Thieves is a short story collection that will be out March '16 with Algonquin Press. ...more

Related Articles

The beauty of a paperback novel is multidimensional. Allow me to explain: The format allows you to catch up on some of 2020's biggest books...
15 likes · 1 comments
“You, Stan, are covered with dirt and leaves.''
''I just applied for a job as a tree,'' I said. It made so little sense, he didn't even bother responding.”
“It's easy to pretend you don't care about anything, Stan. It's also cowardly.” 2 likes
More quotes…