Reader Reviewed Dead Ends by Erin Jade Lange

Dead Ends

Written by Erin Jade Lange

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

Shortlisted for the Waterstone's Children's Book Prize Best Fiction for Teens Award 2015 A touching and beautifully observed story about friendship and overcoming family difficulties. An unlikely friendship between A-grade student and violent bully Dane Washington and Billy D, a new and younger kid on the block who has Down’s syndrome, turns out to be vital for both of them. Dane is able to show the better side of himself through his care of Billy D. and Billy D has a special job – finding his father – that he needs Dane to help him with. The two boys set off on a road trip in search of one father that leads both to a better understanding of both of their relationships with their fathers – and of taking personal responsibility.

Reader Reviews

Teens love to read and a small number of our reader review panel members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title.

  • Molly Parker, age 14 - 'The book took you on emotional journey, one minute you’re laughing and the next you are crying. The story was really gripping and made you wanted to know what happens next.' Read full review >
  • Jodi Coffman, age 12 - 'This book is great and unpredictable which I loved.  The ending is not what I anticipated at all - the twists and turns are constant.  I could not put it down!' Read full review >
  • Juliana Christianson, age 14 - 'This story moved me and brought me round to realise the everyday struggles of people who are looked down upon for being 'different'...I read it in one long night because I couldn't put it down, thank you Erin Lange for some much needed reading material.' Read full review >
  • Jade Craddock - 'Lange offers a powerful portrait of friendship and loyalty, hope and survival.' Read full review >
  • Maddy Faulkner, age 11 - 'The way that Erin Lange has written this book is sensitive yet thought provoking as it makes you understand the true meaning of friendship. I love this book and can’t wait for more books by this author!' Read full review >
  • Susana Sanchez Gonzalez, age 38 - 'Another great YA book to shout about. Powerful premise, wonderful characters, intelligent questions. What's not to like?' Read full review >
  • Madi Campbell, age 14 - 'an absolutely amazing book, it is a definite read for the teenage section. At points it can pull on your heart strings, but it also brings tears of happiness to your eyes.' Read full review >
  • Liam Pickering, age 11 - 'This was a book that made me think and caused me to question my instincts. I kept changing my mind about the characters and what I thought was going to happen.' Read full review >


Dead Ends by Erin Jade Lange

Dane Washington and Billy D couldn't be more different. Dane is clever and popular, but he's also a violent rebel. Billy D has Down's Syndrome, plays by the rules and hangs out with teachers in his lunch break. But Dane and Billy have more in common than they think - both their fathers are missing. Maybe they'll just have to suck up their differences and get on with helping each other find some answers.

Powerful, funny, moving - the ultimate coming-of-age novel.


‘I love it. it reminds me of John Green's A Fault in our Starsand RJ Palacio'sWonder.’ Jo, Victoria Park Books

‘'A disturbing modern morality tale that underlines the gulf between teenage and adult online culture' ’ Financial Times

‘This book, *sigh* it broke my heart, put it back together, ripped it apart again, and put it back together in the best way possible.’ Kayla Marshal,

‘'What an incredible, poignant and affecting debut novel.’ Jake Hope, Children's Librarian and Blue Peter judge

About the Author

Erin Jade Lange

Erin Lange writes facts by day and fiction by night. As a TV producer, she is inspired by real-world issues. She grew up in the cornfields of northern Illinois, along the Mississippi River, but now lives in the sunshine of Arizona.

Her debut novel, Butter, was published to enormous critical acclaim. Dead Ends is her second novel.

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Book Info


384 pages
Interest Age: From 12


Erin Jade Lange
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Faber Children's Books an imprint of Faber & Faber

Publication date

3rd July 2014




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