Fourmile

 
4.7
 
4.7 (1)
1720   0
Write Review
Fourmile
Author(s)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
September 18, 2012
ISBN
978-0374350956
Buy This Book
      


Twelve-year-old Foster knows in his gut that Dax Ganey, the man dating his widowed mother, is a bad seed. Then a mysterious stranger arrives at their Alabama farm, a former Army Ranger in Iraq rambling across the country, and Foster believes he has found an ally against Dax. The stranger proves a fascinating mentor, full of wisdom and secrets. And Dax soon has reason to resent not just him and Foster but also Foster’s mother. A spurned Dax will be a dangerous enemy, but Foster is increasingly aware that the stranger is just as dangerous, if not more so.

From the author of one of the most highly acclaimed children's survival adventures of the last decade comes this tautly wound new novel reminiscent of classic westerns, about a boy caught in the middle of a clash that may turn out to be his own battle to fight.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0  (1)
Characters 
 
5.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
5.0  (1)
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0

Problems and suspense

Foster is still struggling with the death of his father, and is irritated that his mother is dating the volatile and unpleasant Dax. Dax is cruel to his dog Joe, rude to Foster, and controlling with his mother. The farm needs to be sold because they can no longer keep up with the work, and Dax is no help at all. One day, Foster meets Gary, who is walking across the US to get to Texas. He stays the night in the barn and starts to help out around the farm in exchange for being able to sleep in the barn. He won't tell Foster why he is walking to Texas, only that he was in the special forces in Iraq, but he is a huge help with the work around the farm, and also with helping Foster work through his grief about his father. When Foster's mother breaks up with Dax and Dax starts to threaten the family, Gary is an even bigger help. Foster knows that he and his mother will eventually have to move to the city to be with his grandfather, and that Gary will leave, but for a while, he needs to be at Fourmile Farm to work through things.

Good Points
Boys hit a developmental stage about half way through 8th grade when they LOVE to read problem novels. Rottman's Stetson, Alex Flinn's work, anything with boys facing challenges. This was absolutely perfect. Problems, but a ton of suspense, and nothing sappy. It reminded me a lot of Shane, which I still love. I can see this being a great book to hand to boys who have read Green's Unstoppable, which really is more problems than football. I am definitely ordering this one for my school library and checking out Alabama Moon.
Was this review helpful to you? 

User reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0  (1)
Characters 
 
5.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
5.0  (1)
Already have an account? or Create an account
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0

Great for middle grade boys

Foster's father died in an accident in the woods behind the farm, and now Foster's mother thinks it is time to sell the place and move the two of them back to Montgomery. Foster misses his dad, but he agrees it might be time for a change.

Another reason Foster wouldn't mind leaving the farm is his mother's new friend, Dax. Dax says he works for the power company, and he has started hanging around pretty regular. Foster doesn't trust the guy and neither does Foster's dog Joe. Fortunately, she keeps Foster busy with chores as she tries to fix up the property to sell.

One afternoon as Foster is painting the fence, he notices a stranger and a dog walking along the road. The stranger introduces himself as Gary and asks if he could use their hose to refill his water container. When it begins to rain, Foster begs his mother to let the man stay in their barn until the weather clears.

Foster is fascinated by Gary and his curious questions reveal that the man was in the military and is traveling to Texas. With Foster's help, Gary fixes the leaky barn roof and proves that he might be helpful around the place. As the days go by, Foster becomes attached to the wanderer.

When Dax stops by for a visit, he challenges Gary's right to be there. His temper flairs and a threatening side of Dax shows itself, frightening both Foster and his mother. Gary sends the bully on his way and promises to stand up to him should he return.

FOURMILE by Watt Key is sure to be a hit with reluctant readers. Readers will quickly connect with Foster and relate to his mixed feelings about leaving the place that holds final memories of his father. The mysterious Gary may have a dangerous secret, but he will win over fans as he protects Foster and his mom from the mean and nasty Dax. Key's previous fans will want to get their hands on this one, and he is sure to gain new fans that can be directed to ALABAMA MOON followed by DIRT ROAD HOME.

Was this review helpful to you? 
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Brightly Burning
Stella Ainsley leaves poverty behind when she quits her engineering...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
All's Faire in Middle School
Eleven-year-old Imogene (Impy) has grown up with two parents working...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
No Sad Songs
Following a family tragedy, 18-year-old Gabe LoScuda suddenly finds...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Blood Magic (Abnormals Underground #1)
Turned into a vampire at the age of two,...
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
The 11:11 Wish
Megan Meyers has a foolproof plan to reinvent herself...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Dragonkyn
Marc used to think he was pretty ordinary, but...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Fragile Facade (Blind Barriers Trilogy #1)
The Brightest Smiles Hide the Darkest Secrets.... When Raven...
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
This Tiny Perfect World
The big-hearted story of a small-town girl who discovers...
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Silver Mask
A generation ago, Constantine Madden came close to achieving what...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Tombs
New York, 1882. A dark, forbidding city, and no place...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Children of Exile
Rosi must decide what she’s willing to risk to save...
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
Teeth of the Gods
Chained to an enemy general. Determined to be free....
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
The Vampire Trick (Dark World: The Vampire Wish 3)
In a kingdom full of secrets, no one can...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
I Am Alfonso Jones
Alfonso Jones can't wait to play the role of...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Unearthed
From the New York Times best-selling author duo Amie...
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
The Boyfriend Agreement
Fake boyfriends are hard work. When 16-year-old Bella’s dream...
 
4.8
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

Brightly Burning
 
4.0
"Seventeen-year-old Stella Ainsley wants to leave the poverty of her spaceship behind. So she applies for a governess job on..."
No Sad Songs
 
4.0
"The first thing that popped into my mind when I read No Sad Song's synopsis was: this sounds familiar. It's..."
The 11:11 Wish
 
4.0
"'The 11:11 Wish' by Kim Tomsic basks in the power of the unthinkable, yet totally imaginable. Every young person (and..."
Dragonkyn
 
4.0
"When Marc hits puberty, something inside of him starts to change. The first thing he notices is that heat doesn't..."
Children of Exile
 
3.7
"Rosi is twelve-years-old and she and the other children of Fredtown were taken from an unsafe situation with their birth..."
I Am Alfonso Jones
 
5.0
"Alfonso Jones is a bright teen who is excited to try out for Hamlet at his school. When he and..."
Believarexic
 
3.3
"BELIEVAREXIC is the fictionalized memoir of author JJ Johnson's stay in an eating disorder unit (EDU) in the 80s. The..."
This Tiny Perfect World
 
3.0
"Things that worked: The small town setting. Although it felt restrictive to the main character, a small town story often..."
The Traitor Prince
 
4.3
"An adventurous, accessible YA fantasy—with likely appeal for fans of An Ember In The Ashes. Based loosely on an..."
You'll Miss Me When I'm Gone
 
5.0
"You'll Miss Me When I'm Gone was one of the last books I read in 2017 and I couldn't have..."
The Stars at Oktober Bend
 
5.0
"Alice Nightingale is broken. It's been three years since the horrific act that left her under the "spell of twelveness"--a..."
Fatal Throne: The Wives of Henry VIII Tell All
 
4.7
"This is a collection of short stories told from the point of view of the wives of King Henry VIII...."
The Bone Sparrow
 
5.0
"Subhi is a refugee. Born in an Australian permanent detention center after his mother and sister fled the violence of..."
Turtles All the Way Down
 
3.0
"This book, no matter how extremely well written, is not for me. I read fiction to escape from reality. Green..."
A Short History of the Girl Next Door
 
5.0
"I've never read something that was written as if it's for a movie screenplay! WHAT I LIKED ..."
The Traitor Prince
 
5.0
"THE TRAITOR PRINCE is the latest installment in C.J. Redwine’s series of companion novels set in the Ravenspire world, each..."
My Name is Victoria
 
3.3
"Intriguing 'what if' look into what might have happened if Sir John Conway's daughter wasn't an enemy, but dear friend..."
Caraval
 
4.7
"I had heard a lot of hype surrounding this book and was not disappointed. Can't wait for the next book,..."
Unearthed
 
3.3
"Indiana Jones meets Myst on an alien planet. There's lots of tension when scavenger Amelia meets disgraced professor's son Jules..."
The Dazzling Heights
 
4.0
"I really enjoyed The Thousandth Floor last year, it was one of the books that surprised me with how much..."