Sunday, October 9, 2011
The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl by Barry Lyga
Fanboy has never had it good, but lately his sophomore year is turning out to be its own special hell. The bullies have made him their favorite target, his best (and only) friend seems headed for the dark side (sports and popularity), and his pregnant mother and the step-fascist are eagerly awaiting the birth of the alien life form known as Fanboy’s new little brother or sister.
Fanboy, though, has a secret: a graphic novel he’s been working on without telling anyone, a graphic novel that he is convinced will lead to publication, fame, and—most important of all—a way out of the crappy little town he lives in and all the people that make it hell for him.
When Fanboy meets Kyra, a.k.a. Goth Girl, he finds an outrageous, cynical girl who shares his love of comics as well as his hatred for jocks and bullies. Fanboy can’t resist someone who actually seems to understand him, and soon he finds himself willing to heed her advice—to ignore or crush anyone who stands in his way
I saw the author tweeting one day that he was looking for reviwers so I jumped at the chance to review the audiobook. I have heard good things about his other books from my friends and interested to get the chance to jump into one myself.
I really thought the narrator did a great job in bringing out the personality of Fanboy and I'm looking into other works that he may have narrated.
As far as the story goes, it was very sad for me to read. I thought it was very realistic in many ways. The main character is very pessimistic. His mother has remarried and having a baby with a man he does not like. He was not happy about his father taking the good computer and had to fight for some freedom by taking the basement room. He didn't have really any close friends and is being bullied. But the thing that I found most disturbing was that he carried a bullett around and had really negative thoughts. While I myself have had similar thoughts throughout different experiences in my life I could see where all that hate and madness comes from.
I found that while listening to the audio I became upset along with him. I hated the way he was teased and that feeling of not being able to escape, even after high school from the negativity and the bullies.
I have to admit that I took a deep breathe when I was done with it because I had an overwhelming amount of intense feelings for me. I found that I was thinking about it while I was not listening to it and getting mad at things all over again.
The story was intense, interesting and a lesson in how some people interact with each other throughout life. I felt the author did a great job of the teenage voice. It was sure interesting to see inside the mindof a teenage boy.
The reasons I have decided to rate it as I did because I did not feel there were enough postive moments in the story to take away from all the negativity that I could see eminating from this character, as well as goth girl. I wanted just a little bit more balance so that the story was not so heavy. There is some humor in the book that does lighten the mood in several parts, but for me I think it hit a little to close to home and mentally my brain stayed focused more on those negative aspects. The other thing that I have a really short tolerance for is repetition. I do not mind being told things throughout a story to be reminded of facts. But litterally when Fanboy got upset, he ranted like no other, in the beginning when we first meet the Step-Facist Oh how many times on one page does "Step-Facist" have to be repeated? And the narrator really put emphasis on each time the word was said that he spit it out, it got on my nerves super fast.
I have decided to rate this one 3 stars. I did think that there is a lot to be said here in this story about boys, interaction with other students and some of the harsh realities of stepping out into the "real world" for the first time. It looks at bullies on a whole new level for me and I did find it encouraging that Fanboy pursued his comic book dreams and found a friend in Goth Girl.
In stores now:
GOTH GIRL RISING (barrylyga.com/gothgirlrising)
BOY TOY (barrylyga.com/boytoy)
THE ASTONISHING ADVENTURES OF FANBOY AND GOTH GIRL (fanboyandgothgirl.com)
WOLVERINE: WORST DAY EVER (barrylyga.com/wolverine)
GEEKTASTIC: "The Truth About Dino Girl" (hachettebookgroup.com/features/geektastic/)
"Her Decade" (barrylyga.com/herdecade)