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Exit Strategy Paperback – March 8, 2010


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 790L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Flux; 1 edition (March 8, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0738715735
  • ISBN-13: 978-0738715735
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.3 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,970,239 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

A Detroit suburb on the skids makes an appropriately seedy setting for this decidedly dark comedy featuring plenty of drinking, smoking, risky behavior, and lives gone wrong. The summer before his senior year proves to be a real eye-opener for Zach as he watches his parents’ marriage dissolve after both get laid off; falls in love with Sarah, the twin sister of his hulking and fiercely protective best friend, Tank; finds evidence that Tank’s savage mood swings and bursts of violence are due to steroids supplied by an idolized high-school coach; and learns that Tank’s supposedly upright father, an undercover cop and the story’s closest approach to an adult role model, has a stash of porn magazines and is taking another man’s wife to sex parties. Though Zach promises no happy endings at the outset of his present-tense narrative, by the close he has made at least a few good choices (after several wince-worthy poor ones), and his determined goal to find a way to escape his town and its traps still looks attainable. Grades 9-12. --John Peters

About the Author

Ryan Potter's (Royal Oak, Michigan) short fiction has appeared in several literary journals. Exit Strategy is his debut novel. To learn more about Ryan Potter, visit www.exitstrategy17.com.


More About the Author

When he's not hard at work writing, Ryan Potter spends his time teaching seventh graders, reading, practicing yoga, imagining life as a rock star, and wishing he had more time to write. His dream of becoming an author began in middle school, where he wrote short stories about aliens and student teachers. He lives in the Detroit area with his wife.

Ryan is the author of numerous published short stories and novels for both young adults and adults. Visit him online at www.NotSoMainstream.com.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 7 customer reviews
Adding to the well developed, intriguing plot is the writing itself.
flamingo1325
This is one of those books where I can't tell you much (unless I want to spoil the plot), but I can say that it was a great, realistic story and worthwhile to read.
YA Book Queen
There are a few sub-plots in the story like Zach's realization that he is in love with his best friends sister.
Darcy Wishard

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Scott G on October 26, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This story really works. It delivers poignantly on the gritty realities of life and growing up. The setting in the suburban Detroit area adds flavor for those familiar with the city or not. I was absorbed in the characters and what was going to happen to them. This is a quick and engaging read because it is well written. I've read some of Ryan Potter's short stories, and now I'm starting on his novel The Cleaner.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tony on August 20, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great read. It is nice to find a book for teen boys that is about real life situations. Even though I am an adult and the book is designed for teens, I was totally glued to what would happen next to Zach and Tank. The book does have it all for teen boys: sports, friendship, drugs, guns, girls and more. Again, a great book!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By YA Book Queen VINE VOICE on May 30, 2010
Format: Paperback
Realistic, unique, and totally awesome debut novel.

Onto the story, Exit Strategy is really Zach's coming of age story, mixed in with a lot of scandal, secrets, and a bit of romance. It all starts with what seems like an easy enough task for Zach to complete, and that's when everything goes downhill. Soon enough, Zach's falling for Sarah, Tank's twin sister, and everything he ever thought he knew is falling to pieces. After all, everyone has secrets...but Zach's just now discovering them all, and he feels like it's up to him to do something about it all.

I have to say, Tank Foster (Zach's best friend) definitely stole the show at some points. His character was so intriguing, and I was always wondering when he'd snap. Zach was a great character as well. His personality seemed legitimate, and his voice seemed real. He has flaws, and he's not perfect, but he is still very likable. Potter describes all of his characters nicely, giving you the perfect idea of just what these characters are like and who they are.

Exit Strategy is filled with enough subplots to keep the story moving at a nice pace (and yet they never left me confused). This is one of those books where I can't tell you much (unless I want to spoil the plot), but I can say that it was a great, realistic story and worthwhile to read.

Highlights: Potter creates a realistic and well developed character with Zach. The plot never ceased to be interesting and entertaining. I also loved how the ending wasn't your average ending, because it really makes the book stand out more.

Lowlights: Hmm...I guess I wanted a bit more of the romance angle? But honestly, I'm not complaining.

Rating: 5 out of 5
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Bookworm VINE VOICE on April 1, 2010
Format: Paperback
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Exit Strategy is a YA book like no other. The well-developed characters and unique plot formulated a memorable story. The main character Zach, lived in Blaine, a small Detroit suburb with no opportunities. The epitome of success was working in the truck assembly plant. Zach, wanted out after graduation. He refused to live in ignorance and yearned for a deeper meaning of life for the future. However, he still had a Summer left so why not cause havoc? And, that's exactly what Zach did. Working to uncover the town's steroid kingpin wasn't easy. Intelligence and sneaky behavior was the only way he was going to collect the evidence he needed and who better for the job than Zach.

Now, his best friend Tank was an intriguing character. The behavior he exhibited was explosive and temperamental. There friendship was sometimes dysfunctional yet ironically balanced each other out. I thought it was adorable that Zach's first real crush was on Tank's twin sister. His attraction to her blossoming beauty captured his heart and made him into a lovesick puppy. I really enjoyed there time together, I just wish she played a bigger role in the book. He not only experienced love but many other emotions throughout the chapters. His issues at home, Tank's rage and secretive cop father, steroid kingpin and being in love shaped the person Zach turned out to be in the end. The bittersweet conclusion left me sad but also elated that he surpassed all the obstacles Blaine threw at him. Overall, a very enjoyable read by an author who shows great promise in writing books that will arouse the interest of females and males.
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