The Driving Lesson by Ben Rehder

A boy and his grandfather take the trip of a lifetime, and become fugitives in the process.

The driving lesson

Charlie Dunbar had big plans for the summer break, but becoming a fugitive was nowhere on the list. Even more unexpected, his partner in crime is his own ailing grandfather. Now they're on the run, trying to make it across the country to see a special kind of doctor, while the world becomes mesmerized by their journey. They are the subject of heated debates on cable news channels. Thousands of people voice their support on Facebook fan pages. And Charlie's own parents appear on live TV to plead for him to come home safely. But Charlie isn't ready yet. He's determined to get his grandfather to Seattle. The only question is, will the police stop him first? 

Genre: FICTION / General

Secondary Genre: FICTION / Coming of Age

Language: English

Keywords: assisted suicide, fugitives, end of life, coming of age

Word Count: 42,000

Sales info:

Please note that I am only accepting translation offers for German at this time. Plenty of information about the book can be found on the Amazon page. Thanks for your interest. 

Sample text:

If, during the last week of my freshman year, you’d asked me what I was planning to do that summer, I can guarantee you that becoming a fugitive would not have made the list.  Not even a really long list.  Especially if you’d told me that I wouldn’t be alone, that it would be me and my grandfather—seriously, my Opa—together, on the run, the subject of a nationwide manhunt.  Yeah, right, I would’ve said.  Are you friggin’ nuts?

     But, as we know now, that’s exactly what happened.  Events sort of conspired, as Mr. Gardner, my English teacher, would say.  And before the entire fiasco was over, we’d become an international phenomenon.  The chaos would grow to include...

Cops across Texas asking the public for help in tracking us down.

Newspapers from Los Angeles to New York plastering our photos all over the front page, me with my baby face and blondish-white hair.  

John Walsh talking about us on America’s Most Wanted, stressing that we were most likely unarmed.  Most likely?

People tweeting about us, talking about us on Facebook, posting videos on YouTube that supposedly showed us eating breakfast at an Iowa truck stop or camping out at Big Bend National Park.  

     My parents, Glen and Sarah Dunbar, appearing on CNN, Mom pleading for God to deliver “her baby Charlie” home safely, while Dad sits there looking uncomfortable and the smoking hot newsbabe nods with sympathy.

     So, yeah, you can kind of understand why I didn’t see any of this coming.  Silly me, I thought the highlight of my summer would be getting my learner’s permit. 


Book translation status:

The book is available for translation into any language except those listed below:

Already translated. Translated by Jason Matthys
Author review:
Jason does a great job and is very responsive to communications and revisions. Would definitely use him again. It was a great experience in every aspect.
Translation in progress. Translated by Jana David
Already translated. Translated by Laura Pascual
Author review:
Laura communicates in a timely manner and meets all deadlines. Great experience working with her.

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