Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly

We rated this book:


Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly deals with an impressive array of issues. The sad thing is that it doesn’t execute any of these issues well. The main plotline is that Arlo Santiago is recruited to work for the government and questions the morality of war. On the side, he is tasked with the roles of coping with his mother’s violent death, supporting his sister’s fight with Huntington’s disease, confronting his father’s drinking habits, and wooing a new city girl that just moved into town. It sounds interesting, right? But Arlo is a flat character who doesn’t do anything except play video games for the bulk of the book. There is no character development. He doesn’t make any defining choices that would give a book meaning. For example, when his sister decides to move out, how do Arlo and his dad react? They literally sit and watch her leave.

Much of the plot is unbelievable and the dialogue is unrealistic. The government is practically leaking secrets to Arlo. There is no chemistry between any of the characters, most of whom have no purpose or personality in the novel. Altogether, it was a disappointing read.

Reviewed By:

Author Conrad Wesselhoeft
Star Count 2.5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 352 pages
Publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publish Date 4/8/2014
ISBN 9780544232693
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue June 2014
Category Young Adult


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