Down and Across
by Arvin Ahmadi

Overview - " John Green fans will appreciate this tale ." -- USA Today
" A] humorous, deeply human coming-of-age story." -- The Washington Post

Scott Ferdowsi has a track record of quitting.

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More About Down and Across by Arvin Ahmadi
"John Green fans will appreciate this tale." --USA Today
" A] humorous, deeply human coming-of-age story." --The Washington Post

Scott Ferdowsi has a track record of quitting. His best friends know exactly what they want to do with the rest of their lives, but Scott can hardly commit to a breakfast cereal, let alone a passion. With college applications looming and his parents pushing him to settle on a "practical" career, Scott sneaks off to Washington, DC, seeking guidance from a famous psychologist who claims to know the secret to success.

He never expects an adventure to unfold. But that's what Scott gets when he meets Fiora Buchanan, a ballsy college student whose life ambition is to write crossword puzzles. When the bicycle she lends him gets Scott into a high-speed chase, he knows he's in for the ride of his life.

Soon, Scott finds himself sneaking into bars, attempting to pick up girls at the National Zoo, and even giving the crossword thing a try--all while opening his eyes to fundamental truths about who he is and who he wants to be.

  • ISBN-13: 9780425289877
  • ISBN-10: 0425289877
  • Publisher: Viking Books for Young Readers
  • Publish Date: February 2018
  • Page Count: 336
  • Reading Level: Ages 12-UP
  • Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.8 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds

Related Categories

Books > Young Adult Fiction > Coming of Age
Books > Young Adult Fiction > Humorous - General
Books > Young Adult Fiction > Careers, Occupations, Internships

BookPage Reviews

The friends along the way

Sixteen-year-old Saaket Ferdowsi—but please call him Scott—lacks grit. So while his parents are visiting family in Iran, he hops on a bus to Washington, D.C., in order to visit a Georgetown professor who’s just won the MacArthur Genius Grant for her research on grit. But the friends he makes along the way—Trent, an aspiring U.S. senator, and Fiona, a crossword aficionado—teach him more about “sticktoitiveness” than he ever could have expected.

Arvin Ahmadi’s charming debut, Down and Across, brings a strong new voice to teen literature. Scott’s uncertainty, and his panic over that uncertainty, will resonate with high school readers faced with the impossible task of figuring out what they want to do with their lives. The supporting characters’ efforts to juggle their own aspirations with their unique baggage will feel equally familiar.

Most of all, Scott’s spontaneous trip—and the lessons he learns about grit along the way—will likely help young readers relieve their own anxiety about the next steps in their lives.


This article was originally published in the February 2018 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

BAM Customer Reviews