Reality Boy and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy New
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
Want it tomorrow, April 25? Order within and choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more

Reality Boy Hardcover

See all 7 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from Collectible from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$9.12 $7.10
"Please retry"

Frequently Bought Together

Reality Boy + Eleanor & Park + Fangirl
Price for all three: $39.48

Buy the selected items together
  • Eleanor & Park $10.74
  • Fangirl $10.74

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought


100 M&T
100 Mysteries & Thrillers to Read in a Lifetime
Looking for something good to read? Browse our picks for 100 Mysteries & Thrillers to Read in a Lifetime, brought to you by the Amazon Book Editors.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (October 22, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316222704
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316222709
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.9 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #87,864 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up-When 16-year-old Gerald was 5, his parents made a contract to appear on a reality television show where a stage nanny offered techniques to mend their beyond-repair family. Gerald was targeted as the problem child when it was actually his psychopathic sister, Tasha, who was the true menace. His parents turned a blind eye, repeatedly allowing their firstborn to torment and threaten the lives of Gerald, sister Lisi, and even the mother while the edited television broadcasts skewed the truth. At first, readers will be taken aback when they learn that little on-camera Gerald defecated on Tasha's and his mother's belongings, earning him the infamous nickname "Crapper," but they will soon realize that in his young mind it was his only weapon of defense in a desperate situation. The horror and injustice of it all follow insecure, agry Gerald into his teens. So does fearsome, unemployed Tasha when she moves into the family's basement with her boyfriend, has loud and regular sex, and is still enabled by their parents. When Gerald warily falls in love with Hannah, a schoolmate and coworker with family troubles of her own, "kidnapping" themselves by running away together seems their only recourse to wake up their parents. King's trademarks-attuned first-person narrative, convincing dialogue, realistic language, and fitting quirkiness-connect effectively in this disturbing, yet hopeful novel. Not since Norma Fox Mazer's disquieting When She Was Good (Scholastic, 1997) has an emotionally and mentally deranged sibling and dysfunctional parents wreaked such havoc on a main character who still manages to survive and grow beyond it.-Diane P. Tuccillo, Poudre River Public Library District, COα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Seventeen-year-old Gerald became infamous at age five, when he took a dump on his family’s kitchen table for the whole reality-TV viewing public to see. A network TV nanny came in to help Gerald be less of a problem child, but the cameras didn’t catch what Tasha, his older sister and tormentor, was doing to him and his other sister, Lisi, or his mother’s constant defense of her eldest daughter at the expense of her youngest children. And so Gerald continued to rage on. Though years of anger-management training and a boxing-gym regimen have helped him gain better control, his future still feels limited to jail or death. The narrative, though striking and often heartbreaking, is disjointed in places, namely with Gerald’s grand plan to run away to the circus. However, this is still a King novel, and the hallmarks of her strong work are there: magical realism, heightened emotion, and the steady, torturous, beautiful transition into self-assured inner peace. Like Gerald, it’s wonderfully broken. Grades 9-12. --Courtney Jones

More About the Author

A.S. King is the author of the highly acclaimed REALITY BOY, LA Times Book Prize winner ASK THE PASSENGERS, 2012 ALA Top Ten Book for Young Adults EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS, and 2011 Michael L. Printz Honor Book PLEASE IGNORE VERA DIETZ. She is also the author of the ALA Best Books for Young Adults DUST OF 100 DOGS as well as a collection of award-winning short stories for adults, MONICA NEVER SHUTS UP.

After a decade living self-sufficiently and teaching literacy to adults in Ireland, she now lives deep in the Pennsylvania woods with her husband and children. Look for Amy's piece in DEAR BULLY and in anthologies BREAK THESE RULES, LOSING IT, and INITIATION, coming 8/14. (And brace yourself for 2014's novel, GLORY O'BRIEN'S HISTORY OF THE FUTURE.) Find more at

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See all 39 customer reviews
An awesome story with great character development.
Karen Long
It made it easier to understand why they were such a dysfunctional family and how the show deeply affected Gerald.
I thought the plot was really interesting though it has a slower pace.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Merle on October 29, 2013
Format: Hardcover
When I first began seeing status updates and reviews coming in from friends about Reality Boy, a surprising number of them dropped the book because it was a book they had to be in a certain mood for. After having read it, I now see what they meant. Reality Boy is definitely a book you have to be in a certain mindset and place to be able to read and fully appreciate.

Gerald's justified anger at his dysfunctional life is almost tangible and very visceral in several scenes. King's writing really shines the brightest during the moments when he's triggered and angry and upset and needing an outlet.

Admittedly, the first hundred or so pages are difficult to read because of his anger and his abusive home life. He deals with it in unhealthy ways and his narrative style reflects it. It's worth sticking with it to see how Gerald grows from the person he is in those first few hundred pages, and how his story unfolds.

I especially liked how we got flashbacks of sorts to the taping of the reality show he and his family were on. It really added a good layer in figuring out exactly how screwed up his family is, and how much it screwed him up in turn.

Gerald was a great character. However, in turn, for all that I felt like I really knew him as a person and got to see all these layers and depth to him, it rarely felt like I could say the same for the secondary characters.

Tasha, his abusive and possibly bipolar sister, is reduced to pretty much just as she is. There's also a very high level of slut shaming put into her character, and I've noticed this is becoming a theme with King's female characters. The main one is always great and exempt from being called a slut for doing the exact same things the female characters who get called sluts do.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Kindle Edition
Gerald Faust was an angry kid way before his mother called Network Nanny to come to their house. But it hit a whole new level when the TV crews began invading their house. To show hi anger he used to punch holes in the walls, but after the TV show came, he began crapping on tables, in shoes, pretty much anywhere but the toilet. This earned him the nickname "The Crapper" and it has followed him to now, twelve years later. No one realized that he was trying to bring to their attention a very serious and life-threatening problem in their home, and it is still very much present now. And Gerald is still angry.

Gerald is a character that seems to have lost all hope of a future after Network Nanny ruined his life. He's been in anger management classes and been put into the special education class at school. The anger management he needed, but the special education he did not. People think that they know Gerald, but they do not. And when you learn the reasons behind his behavior as a small child, your heart really goes out to him. It isn't until Gerald meets Hannah that he begins to realize that he can make his own future, one where he can succeed. Network Nanny was one turning point in Gerald's life and meeting Hannah was another. One turning point was for the worse, and the other was for the better.

Reality Boy shows us the negative effects fame can have on children, or in Gerald's case "infamy." Even when the people involved in the show (particularly the fake nanny) realized that something wasn't quite right in that house, they did nothing to help the situation. They only cared about the ratings for their show and not how it affected those they were exploiting.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Christina @ My Life in Books on January 3, 2014
Format: Hardcover
//Cover Chat//

Usually I'm not a fan of yellow but I love how the cover incorporates the television color spectrum. The use of color versus black and white is utilized very well and makes for a very striking book cover.

//First Line//

I'm the kid you saw on TV.


A.S. King takes a current cultural phenomenon and turns everything on it's head. As an ex-reality show star, Gerald is known for being the "Crapper". While his father works and then comes home to drink himself into oblivion, his mother keeps renovating their gated community household. His older sister Tasha has dropped out of college and screws her boyfriend down in the basement so everyone can hear. His other sister, the only one who really understood their family, has gone off to college leaving Gerald to fend for himself. Through his job at a sports arena food stand, he meets Hannah who shows him that he isn't alone because everyone is a little messed up. The chapters flash between the reality show filming when Gerald was a kid and him as a teenage. Both the story progression and well-written character development make this a very interesting read. The book brings up a lot of discussion points about our society and it's obsession with scripted reality.


Even though I have never experienced the kind of psychological damage that can result from media exposure at such a young age, I couldn't help but empathize with the protagonist Gerald Faust.

While Gerald leapt off the page, Hannah and especially his family bordered on becoming cliché. Even though Tasha was downright sadistic, the way she was slut-shamed throughout the book didn't sit right with me.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Product Images from Customers

Most Recent Customer Reviews


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?