Publisher - Viking Books (Penguin)
Pages - 330
"I couldn't resist imagining my life as one of those coming-age-movies-and Fiora as the quirky, two-dimensional female character, written in solely to help me discover my full potential. The idea was nice. It smoothed over a good fifteen minutes of bumpy road time."
Down and Across is a YA/Coming-of-Age book about Saaket "Scott" Ferdowsi who never seems to have a hold on his life. The realisation of his care-free and commitment-phobic attitude leads him to a journey to find the true meaning of 'grit' in present-day Washington DC. Along the way, he makes friends with characters like Fiora and Trent and they help him on his runaway business while his parents spend time with his grandparent in Iran.
This is one of the books that make you wonder why you picked it up in the first place. I was enjoying the beginning of the book but by the time I was halfway done, I almost gave up. Arvin makes a good attempt at righting YA as his debut but doesn't quite do justice with the genre. The concept of the book wasn't exceptional and neither was the storyline but somehow you manage to finish the book with nothing great left in your heart
I really hoped this book would make me adore crossword puzzles and everything to do with it. However, I'm still the same old person who just read through only to know how the main character finds himself.
CONCLUSION: If you find yourself in a reading slump and are looking for a light read, this might just do the job fairly well.