When 14 year old Stephen moves into a tough neighborhood, 17 year old Ben takes Stephen under his wing and protects him. But Ben is a reckless daredevil, and he pushes Stephen to prove his manhood by playing dangerous games with the freight trains that pass through the neighborhood. When Ben finds out that Stephen has a crush on a girl in his history class, Ben pressures him to stand up to her older, jealous boyfriend who threatens Stephen’s life. The tension mounts as the story speeds towards its its life or death climax. This novel explores first love and the meaning of true courage.
The Wrong Side of the Tracks was one of those remarkable reads that sucked this reader right out of the real world and into Wells fictional story book universe. When one finds such a read, it’s magical.
From the first paragraph, I was reminded of the1986 American dramatic film: Stand By Me, directed by Rob Reiner. Based on the novella The Body by Stephen King which starred Wil Wheaton, River Phoenix, Corey Feldman and others. (By the way, I loved that movie.) Reading The Wrong Side of the Tracks was like visiting old friends that I hadn’t seen in years. (Which reminds me, I should pull out my video copy of Stand By Me, along with a box of tissues and watch it again.) Although Stephen King’s and Mike Wells stories are quite different, they share a similar overall feel. Wells brought the teenage (main) characters to life in a way that I felt I was actually part of the story itself, although I was a silent observer. Wells descriptions and dialogue are spot on and weaves a very realistic and believable story. The Wrong Side of the Tracks holds true to Wells reputation as a writer of ‘unputdownable’ novels.
About the author
An American bestselling thriller & suspense author, Mike Wells teaches in the Creative Writing program at Oxford. Wells is known for his super fast-paced, ‘unputdownable’ novels.
Tags: adventure, fiction, teen boys
Print Pages 103 pages (approximate)
5 out of 5 stars