Author(s): Wolfgang Herrndorf
WINNER OF THE 2011 YOUNG ADULT CATEGORY IN THE GERMAN CHILDREN'S LITERATURE AWARD
A beautifully written, darkly funny coming-of-age story from an award-winning, bestselling German author
Mike Klingenberg isn't exactly one of the cool kids at his school. For one, he doesn't have many friends. (Okay, zero friends.) And everyone laughs when he has to read his essays out loud in class. And he's never, ever invited to parties -- especially not the party of the year, thrown by the gorgeous Tatiana.
Andrej Tschichatschow, aka Tschick (not even the teachers can pronounce his name), is new in school, and unpopular as well, but in a completely different way. He always looks like he's just been in a fight, he sleeps through nearly every class, and his clothes are tragic.
But one day, out of the blue, Tschick shows up at Mike's house. It turns out he wasn't invited to Tatiana's party either, and he's ready to do something about it. Forget the popular kids -- together, Mike and Tschick are heading out on a road trip across Germany. No parents, no map, no destination. Will they get hopelessly lost in the middle of nowhere? Probably. Will they make bad decisions, meet some crazy people, and get into trouble? Definitely. But will anyone ever call them boring again?
Not a chance.
PRAISE FOR WOLFGANG HERRNDORF
'Wolfgang Herrndorf died of cancer last year at only 48; his first novel translated into English makes evident the loss of a mellifluous and memorable voice in YA literature ... an addictive and artfully rendered ride through a vivid landscape.' The Sunday Age
'[A] fun, uninhibited, desperate ride through what it means to have to make a life as an adolsecent out of what you have got ... A road trip like no other.' The West Australian
2011 Nomination for Leipzig Book Fair Prize
2011 Clemens Brentano Prize
2011 German Youth Literature Prize
'Well translated, this is a good choice for readers looking for a contemporary realistic novel with a humorous sense of adventure.' -Sarah Bean Thompson Booklist
'Beginning at the end, with Mike narrating the explanation suggested by the title, this alternately wild, sad, hilarious, and tender tale chronicles the development of a strange and beautiful friendship.' - Publishers Weekly Starred Review
Wolfgang Herrndorf, born 1965 in Hamburg, studied painting in Nuremberg and now lives in Berlin. "Why We Took the Car" is his first young adult novel, and his first work for the U.S. market.