I don't want to quote fantasyfan's and Hamlet's long and cogent posts, but I appreciate the input on the minds of boys.
I'm still considering the devices used by Mitchell to tell the story. I continue to like the inconsistent voice (it occurs to me I don't want to hear unadulterated 13-year old) and I'm going back and forth on the amount of incident and contrivance and I can make a better case for it even if it irked at times. I think it contributes to a surreal quality that actually does work for me and ties in to the adult voice. Memory is imperfect and creative and the events described might result from that or at least be enhanced. A severed leg flying through the air, being trapped in a cottage with a witchy woman who's had a stroke, literally falling into a gypsy camp.... Less and less am I likely to take everything that happened as actual reportage and that's fine. I'll also note my directly opposite take to Hamlet's on the move at the end of the book; I saw it as meaning he was going to have it all to do again and he saw it as the deus ex machina that would save Jason from the consequences. I think both can be true.