My rating: 1 of 5 stars
Publication Date: March 24th 2015
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Point of View: 3rd Person & Masculine
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBT, Family, Love, Psychological
A heartfelt, humorous story of a teen boy’s impulsive road trip after the shock of his lifetime—told entirely in lists!
Darren hasn’t had an easy year.
There was his parents’ divorce, which just so happened to come at the same time his older brother Nate left for college and his longtime best friend moved away. And of course there’s the whole not having a girlfriend thing.
Then one Thursday morning Darren’s dad shows up at his house at 6 a.m. with a glazed chocolate doughnut and a revelation that turns Darren’s world inside out. In full freakout mode, Darren, in a totally un-Darren move, ditches school to go visit Nate. Barely twenty-four hours at Nate’s school makes everything much better or much worse—Darren has no idea. It might somehow be both. All he knows for sure is that in addition to trying to figure out why none of his family members are who they used to be, he’s now obsessed with a strangely amazing girl who showed up out of nowhere but then totally disappeared.
Told entirely in lists, Todd Hasak-Lowy’s debut YA novel perfectly captures why having anything to do with anyone, including yourself, is:
3. ridiculously complicated
4. possibly, hopefully the right thing after all.
I decided to DNF this book when I realised how I had read 150 pages… that could have been shorten to 15. Really.
I was waiting for the moment when Darren was going to visit his brother, Nate, at his college with his father. So I waited… and waited… and waited some more, but the moment never came and I unfortunately ran out of patience and interest for the book.
It’s actually not a ‘‘bad’’ book. Honestly speaking, I quite liked the main character and every other character in the story interacting with this latter. Flawed or not, they felt very authentic and I could easily picture them in my mind.
It was exciting to start a book solely made in ‘‘lists’’ and that is the reason why I thought this would make an interesting read. And I guess it could have, but the thing is that the author included such a huge amount of unimportant and insubstantial lists that, instead of appearing as plot fillers, they were actually… the entire plot. Or almost.
Don’t get me wrong, this, for some people, will make an amazing (deep and slow) psychological read but, for me, it was too much sauce and not enough meat.