Zane’s Trace

2009 North Carolina YA Book Award

Zane Guesswind has just killed his grandfather, or so he believes. So he steals the 1969 Plymouth Barracuda his long-gone father left behind and takes off on a manic trip to his mother’s grave to kill himself. Armed with a six-pack of Mountain Dew, a jumbo pack of Sharpies (for scribbling all over the dashboard), and a loaded gun in the trunk, he’s headed to Zanesville, Ohio, with no rearview mirror and no more worries. On the way, he meets Libba, a young hitchhiker who shares his destination, and other mystic and mysterious characters. With each encounter, and every mile marker he passes, Zane gets farther from the life he knows — but closer to figuring out who he really is.

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“A coming-of-age road story with a supernatural twist — and a compulsively readable poetic novel about identity and belonging.”
A Book Sense Children’s Top Ten Pick

“Allan Wolf is a fine poet who has learned, as Zane’s Trace shows, that poetry isn’t all line and space.”
Nikki Giovanni

“Zane’s Trace is a wild and exuberant ride–you won’t be able to buckle your seat belt, even if you wanted to.”
Jeffrey Lent

“Assured rhythm and taut pacing, haunting characters and a few surprises.”
Kirkus Review

“This one caught me by surprise. It’s smart (sometimes even smart-aleck), gut-wrenching, heart-palpitating, laugh-out-loud, and incredibly moving.”
Jane Yolen