professornana (professornana) wrote,

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astonished fan

Do you remember a scene in the movie PARENTHOOD where Steve Martin is told to enjoy the roller coaster ride that is his life instead of grimacing and worrying his way through the tough times? Somehow that is what comes to mind as I finish reading the incredible ASTONISHING ADVENTURES OF FAN BOY AND GOTH GIRL by Barry Lyga.

As the story opens, I am certain that there are severe dips ahead, falls that will tumble my stomach and make me shut my eyes trying to pretend they are not there. Meet our geeky protagonist doomed to be the punching bag of all the jocks at school. At home, his life is made miserable by his step-facist and the fact that Mom is preggers. His only comfort seems to come from working on his graphic novel on a wheezy old computer. His favorite talisman: a bullet. All of this spells big trouble ahead.

Enter Kyra, the Goth Girl who might possibly be his salvation. Or will she be aid to his self-destructive tendencies? That is what is at the heart of this novel that teeters (mixing metaphors now) on the brink of the precipice. Lyga provides no easy path on this roller coaster ride, preferring to let the characters take control and make their erratic )and quite realistic) way through faltering stops and starts. Will the geek self destruct? What role will Goth Girl play? Is everyone doomed?

The ride is exhilarating and worth the ticket.

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