Rats Saw God by Rob Thomas: B

From the back cover:
Houston, Sophomore Year
Steve is on top of the world. He and his friends are the talk of the school. He’s in love with a terrific girl. He can even deal with the astronaut—a world-famous hero who happens to be his father.

San Diego, Senior Year
Steve is bummed out, drugged out, flunking out. A no-nonsense counselor says he can graduate if he writes a 100-page paper. And in telling how he got to where he is, Steve discovers how to get to where he wants to be.

Rob Thomas is the creator of Veronica Mars, one of my favorite TV series, and so I was expecting a little something more than what Rats Saw God had to offer. It’s a perfectly decent little book, but I found it to be predictable, mostly on account of heavy-handed foreshadowing.

There are all kinds of little glints of what must be some of Thomas’s favorite elements—the troubled teen who has a poor relationship with his famous father, a supporting cast who fit just a bit too neatly into their stereotypical roles, the game of “I Never” used to reveal who has not done a particular thing, the popular teacher with a dark side…

That said, it was an enjoyable quick read, and I particularly liked how the blocking and gestures of various scenes were clearly and efficiently written. It’s like Thomas was seeing all of this as a TV show in his head even then.

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