Ghost Medicine and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Ghost Medicine Hardcover – September 2, 2008


See all 8 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$8.90 $0.01

Frequently Bought Together

Ghost Medicine + Passenger
Buy the selected items together
  • Passenger $13.80

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Feiwel & Friends; First Edition edition (September 2, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312375573
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312375577
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,525,303 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Smith's first novel, a deceptively simple coming-of-age story, defies expectations via its sublime imagery and its elliptical narrative structure. Troy, 16, and two childhood friends spend the summer following Troy's mother's death wrangling wild horses while drinking homemade wine and sampling chewing tobacco. Each of their brushes with danger—a rattlesnake attack, a predatory mountain lion—they commemorate with tattoos and rituals in homage to the mysterious force they call ghost medicine. The intrepid Troy—who, in the beginning of the book, reads sections of The Idiot and Jude the Obscure while hiding out in his grandfather's mountain cabin with his horse—grapples with his mother's death through philosophical ruminations: There might be a God [but] He is, at best, ambivalent to all of the things set in motion in this world. In the periphery is Troy's first love, Luz, for whom Troy contemplates staying forever in the idyllic landscape, rather than leaving for college. While the summer climaxes with jarring violence, the possibility of a true departure never materializes: the outside world is held at bay by the inscrutable questions unveiled in the book's conclusion. Ages 12–up. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Grade 8 Up—Distant from his emotionally absent father, and missing his mother, who died recently, 16-year-old Troy first finds solace on a solo camping trip and then with his friends—Tom Buller, a wild and fearless farmhand; Gabe Benavidez, the timorous and underestimated son of a wealthy Western ranch owner; and Luz Benavidez, Gabe's sister and Troy's lifetime love. That summer is a journey of loss, self-discovery, pain, triumph, and growth as the young people try to define who they are and what they're meant to do. Oftentimes they seek answers from what Troy calls Ghost Medicine, a Native American philosophy that explains the strength and signs that can be drawn from nature. While Troy senses that change is coming fast and fierce, he never imagines the deadly threat the sheriff's son imposes when childhood pranks, jealousy, and vengeance get out of control. Troy wishes to be lost, but his greatest hope is to be found, and Ghost Medicine beautifully captures that paradox in this timeless and tender coming-of-age story. Not only will it inspire readers to prod the boundaries of their own courage, but it will also remind them that life and love are precious and fleeting.—Terri Clark, Smokey Hill Library, Centennial, CO
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

Andrew Smith knew ever since his days as editor of his high school newspaper that he wanted to be a writer. After graduating college, he experimented with journalistic careers - writing for newspapers and radio stations - but found it wasn't the kind of writing he'd dreamed about doing.

Born with an impulse to travel, Smith, the son of an immigrant, bounced around the world and from job to job, working at various times in a metals mill, as a longshoreman unloading bananas from Central America and imported autos from Japan, in bars and liquor stores, in security, and as a musician, before settling down permanently in Southern California. Here, he got his first "real job," as a teacher in an alternative educational program for At-Risk teens, married, and moved to a rural mountain location. Throughout his life, Smith continued to write, but never considered seeking publication until challenged into it by lifelong friend, author Kelly Milner Halls.

In 2008, Smith published his first novel, Ghost Medicine, an ALA/YALSA "Best Books for Young Adults." This was followed in 2009 with In the Path of Falling Objects, also a BBYA recipient. The Marbury Lens is Smith's third novel, and will be followed in 2011 by Stick.

Smith prefers the seclusion of his rural setting, where he lives with his wife, 16-year-old son, 13-year-old daughter, two horses, three dogs, three cats, and one irritable lizard named Leo.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
16
4 star
1
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
1
See all 18 customer reviews
Actually, read it until finished in bed last night.
Karen L. Morton
Geared towards the teenage crowd but thoroughly enjoyed it as an adult.
B. Ingino
The author describes every scene with great detail and dialogue.
ReadingTub Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By ReadingTub Reviews on February 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Ghost Medicine Troy Stott's story. It is about friendship, growing up, choices, grief, and so much more. This is a captivating story that offers a wonderful alternative to the usual action-driven fare presented to teens. Teenagers (and adults) connect with Troy, and we understand his need for hope. Some of the content and language do not suit young children, but mature readers (10+) should be able to handle the common references to tobacco and alcohol. The story itself lacks the expected qualities of complicated twists and the anticipated romance, but that is what makes the novel so different and special. Its mood is very calm, even with the occasional violence. The author describes every scene with great detail and dialogue. There were a few chapters where those details slow down the pace and may cause the reader to drop his or her attention. But you should keep reading. As the story progresses, the characters evolve into complex and understandable people. This novel will make the reader wish for something like the ghost medicine. It helped Troy and his friends stay invisible and invincible against time, even for the briefest moment.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By lewis on September 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I don't care who you are, teen or adult, male or female, you're going to love this book. Smith's prose is clear and perfect, the characters are bigger than life but from life, and the tension in these scene's is almost unbearable. A lot of people are going to say Ghost Medicine is Cormac McCarthy for teens, and the comparison is an apt one, but this book is too good and too original to be compared to anyone. I especially recommend this for the reluctant teen reader in your life; it will change their minds about what a book can do. And the great part is that, once they've finished--and they'll zip through it--you'll have the pleasure of reading it yourself. Can't say enough.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Nora M. Rawn on October 27, 2008
Format: Hardcover
From the first page this book commands attention, hinting at enough adventure and drama to hook reluctant readers in such a lyrical way that the most literary of readers wouldn't be turned off either: the perfect blend of compelling characters, strong narrative voice and coming of age turmoil.

Andrew Smith's first novel indicates a great career to come, but in the meantime there is plenty to enjoy. His debut is beautifully but plainly written, and addresses difficult subjects with honesty, portraying adolescence in all of its mixed-up, complicated glory.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Hardcover
Just finished Ghost Medicine. Actually, read it until finished in bed last night. Blurry-eyed and all - I Loved It. The writing is beautiful to read. The story has a very visual flow to it and you get to know the characters in an intimate way. If I don't like a book I can't force myself to read it. This one came easy. I didn't want to stop. I think this is a story for both genders and most ages. I definitely recommend Ghost Medicine!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J McKInney on October 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Andrew Smith's Ghost Medicine chronicles the life of Troy and his best friends through the summer before his junior year of high school. Boys especially will identify with the characters and situations they encounter, but it is a book everyone will enjoy from cover to cover. I read glued to the pages from beginning to end. Andrew wrote completely free spirited leading to unanticipated events and resolutions throughout the story. Not only would I recommend this book to teens, the target group, but also to those who enjoy reading. You will laugh. You will cry. And you will feel as though you know those boys.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Maria on October 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I've always been drawn to America's rugged cowboy culture. Having grown up in the lowlands by the North Sea, the American West seemed worlds away. It was. And it still is. But through Ghost Medicine, I feel I have lived it. Smith brings that experience to life in such a rich, sensory and even seductive way, that I felt I was riding a horse along with Troy, Gabe and Tommy.
I was happy Smith prepared us for what was to come (sort of), because it would have broken my heart otherwise.
A great read....
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Cobos on January 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased the book for a friend, but he received it from someone else first. So I kept and read the book, and I am so happy I did. It was an epic tale with characters where attachment is inevitable. Read it very quickly because I never wanted to put the book down! I am not a habitual reader, so it takes a good book to keep my attention. Loved this book and would recommend to anyone and everyone.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By Karen Patton on September 8, 2014
Format: Hardcover
My daughter's favorite book!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?