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4.4 out of 5 stars
Teen Angst? Naaah . . .
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on April 24, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read this book the summer before I started high school at Stuyvesant in Manhattan, which happens to be the school that Ned went to (go Stuy!). His book was very accurate and insightful about the school, and I was able to relate to some things he felt. Even though he graduated when I was still in elementary school, things have stayed the same. Things like the Magic Card gang on the 6th floor are still real for my grade. It was a funny read and I literally couldn't put it down until I finished.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on January 31, 2001
Format: Paperback
I loved this book. When I first saw it in the library, I thought it was some sort of self-help book for teens written by some middle aged woman. Boy, was I wrong. I grabed it because I needed to get a book for class. I thought I'd just pretend to read it, and continue to talk to my friend sitting next to me. However, once I read the first few lines, I was fully imersed in Vizzini's quant and zany style of writting. I am now reccomending the book to nearly all of my friends, because I think they will relate. And I know my friend Andrew will love the constant mentioning of his favorite band, Nirvana. You will not be dissapointed with this book!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on October 5, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This memoir was very interesting. I chose this particular memoir because it was a story of Ned Vizzini's high school life, something I can kind of relate to. It didn't seem like a memoir, it seemed like a realistic fiction novel. Ned Vizzini goes through big tests, trying to be cool, his first job, a school trip to Cancun, his first girlfriend, and more high school dramas.

There are three high schools in his area, Brooklyn Tech , Bronx Science, and Stuyvestant. All these schools are good, but Ned wants to get into the best school possible, Stuyvestant. The problem is, you have to take a test, the Specialized Science High School Admissions Test, SSHSAT for short. Stuyvestant requires a higher grade on this mini SAT type test, so it's the most desirable school. Ned thinks that it'll be no sweat. His teacher even thinks so to, "Ned," Mary leaned in close. "You don't need a list. You'll do fine." (Page 16). But once he gets the study book, he starts to worry. He didn't even know how to do the first problem of the math section, "A circle with diameter 4 has area of ? Use pi = 3.14." Ned obsesses over studying and learning all that he can, offended that it had questions he couldn't answer, and intending to kill it. He was even resorting to sleeping with the book under his pillow, thinking that the knowledge will seep into his brain.

Eventually, all that worrying pays off and Ned gets accepted to Stuy. But the drama doesn't end there. He is bombarded with peer pressure to be cool, heavy homework, and the fact that he is alone with no friends. He finds some kids playing a card game called Magic. After watching them for many days, Ned joins them in their card playing. He attends all-night-and-day tournaments, stocks up on cards that consume a good amount of money, but still has no real friends. A while later, he meets Judith and finally gets the courage to ask her out. "She's everything I'd missed in high school - love, status, constant physical attention - wrapped up and delivered in a slick, beautiful package."(Page 189).

Ned's first job was house-painting with a guy name Carlo, his boss and a very annoying Italian man. His friend James had told him that he could make three-hundred dollars a week, Ned jumps to it. But when Ned was told to get there at eight o'clock a.m., he should have known better. Ned was always late. Of course, Carlo blows up at him, not such a good first impression on either of them. Carlo ends up having to teach Ned how to paint (much to Carlo's frustration) and only lets him have a half hour lunch break. Ned went home at six o'clock, a ten-hour day.

Every year at Stuyvestant, the Senior's take a trip to Cancun for a week of partying. "It was perfect. On April 4, 1999, I was going to turn eighteen. On that same date, I was scheduled to be in Cancun, Mexico." (Page 183). But his hopes were soon shattered, when he found that the ticket costs eight-hundred-and-fifty bucks. Way too much for his family. Ned's mom says "Absolutely not!" without any hesitation. "Vacation? Ha! It's an orgy of sex and drugs!" (Page 186). Ned and his mom have a huge argument, but his mom won. Right after the argument Ned starts brainstorming ideas to go to Cancun without his parents finding out. But something else comes up. His mom signed Ned up to play Jesus in a church play that was on the same day as when the plane was leaving for Cancun, the same time. There was no getting out of that. Ned eventually had to put up signs around the school saying that he had a ticket to Cancun and he'd sell it to anyone who'd buy it. He sold it for the same price he'd bought it at. He spent his birthday with Judith, just not on the beach.

Ned Vizzini learned a lot about himself and his mom. He learned that his mom was not the lenient mom that most cool kids had. She was strict, and signed him up for things he didn't want to do. Ned learned that he needs to be more aggressive, to stand up for his rights more often. He learned that he needs to suck it up sometimes. A little elbow grease goes a long way.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 25, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The author reflects on his youth in this collection of short stories. Teenage memories written with style and humor kept me from putting this book down.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
To tell you the truth, the only reason I picked up Ned Vizzini's book, "Teen Angst? Naah" was because it was free and I didn't have anything else to do at the Book Expo. However, as soon as I started reading it, I couldn't put it down. Being a teenager myself, I could relate to Ned's problems with members of the opposite sex, parents, and school. I mean, we've all had embarrassing moments -- but I don't think any of us could put them into words as well as Ned Vizzini does in this book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on May 8, 2011
Format: Paperback
I absolutely loved Be More Chill and It's kind of a Funny Story, but this was pretty boring, i don't just mean the content, the delivery and writing style felt a dry, there were some really interesting moments but not quite enough, and the story's ending was a too abrupt, the whole thing was just a bit of a bummer.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on August 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
Inside the hideous yellow cover you will find a treasure trove of insightful wit on painful reality. Best of all, there's no poetic garbage about protagonist Ned "becoming a man" as there is in every other movie, tele-movie, and Wonder Years episode about High School. Instead Ned Vizzini chooses to focus on real life as a New York Teen, and all the comedy, stress, and, yes, maturation (no matter how slight)that comes with it. With the yellow cover, you won't exactly achieve the brooding intellectual look in the halls, but you could always gift-wrap it with dark wrapping paper, or better yet, wrap it in a Subway map to show the book's true NYC colors.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 11, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
please forgive grammatical erros of this review. texting on a kindle is bad news.
teen angst naaah... merely caught my attention because of the author`s. id read its kind of a funny story a few months before and literally could not put it down. spring term of senior year i guess i shouldve been doing more sociable things but this book had me hooked for about two days. teen angst is definitely a top favorite of mine. i made the mistake of reading it mid eurotrip and i accidentally spent a whole day reading. its such a breath of fresh air ~ excuse the cliche ~ to hear young writers tell their past so truthfully and openly. vizzini has got a great way with words. i recommend all of his books and i cannot wait for the next one to come out.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 5, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This memoir was very interesting. This is a story of Ned Vizzini's high school life, something I can kind of relate to. It didn't seem like a memoir, it seemed like a realistic fiction novel. Ned Vizzini goes through big tests, trying to be cool, his first job, a school trip to Cancun, his first girlfriend, and more high school dramas.

There are three high schools in his area, Brooklyn Tech , Bronx Science, and Stuyvestant. All these schools are good, but Ned wants to get into the best school possible, Stuyvestant. The problem is, you have to take a test, the Specialized Science High School Admissions Test, SSHSAT for short. Stuyvestant requires a higher grade on this mini SAT type test, so it's the most desirable school. Ned thinks that it'll be no sweat. His teacher even thinks so to, "Ned," Mary leaned in close. "You don't need a list. You'll do fine." (Page 16). But once he gets the study book, he starts to worry. He didn't even know how to do the first problem of the math section, "A circle with diameter 4 has area of ? Use pi = 3.14." Ned obsesses over studying and learning all that he can, offended that it had questions he couldn't answer, and intending to kill it. He was even resorting to sleeping with the book under his pillow, thinking that the knowledge will seep into his brain.

Eventually, all that worrying pays off and Ned gets accepted to Stuy. But the drama doesn't end there. He is bombarded with peer pressure to be cool, heavy homework, and the fact that he is alone with no friends. He finds some kids playing a card game called Magic. After watching them for many days, Ned joins them in their card playing. He attends all-night-and-day tournaments, stocks up on cards that consume a good amount of money, but still has no real friends. A while later, he meets Judith and finally gets the courage to ask her out. "She's everything I'd missed in high school - love, status, constant physical attention - wrapped up and delivered in a slick, beautiful package."(Page 189).

Ned's first job was house-painting with a guy name Carlo, his boss and a very annoying Italian man. His friend James had told him that he could make three-hundred dollars a week, Ned jumps to it. But when Ned was told to get there at eight o'clock a.m., he should have known better. Ned was always late. Of course, Carlo blows up at him, not such a good first impression on either of them. Carlo ends up having to teach Ned how to paint (much to Carlo's frustration) and only lets him have a half hour lunch break. Ned went home at six o'clock, a ten-hour day.

Every year at Stuyvestant, the Senior's take a trip to Cancun for a week of partying. "It was perfect. On April 4, 1999, I was going to turn eighteen. On that same date, I was scheduled to be in Cancun, Mexico." (Page 183). But his hopes were soon shattered, when he found that the ticket costs eight-hundred-and-fifty bucks. Way too much for his family. Ned's mom says "Absolutely not!" without any hesitation. "Vacation? Ha! It's an orgy of sex and drugs!" (Page 186). Ned and his mom have a huge argument, but his mom won. Right after the argument Ned starts brainstorming ideas to go to Cancun without his parents finding out. But something else comes up. His mom signed Ned up to play Jesus in a church play that was on the same day as when the plane was leaving for Cancun, the same time. There was no getting out of that. Ned eventually had to put up signs around the school saying that he had a ticket to Cancun and he'd sell it to anyone who'd buy it. He sold it for the same price he'd bought it at. He spent his birthday with Judith, just not on the beach.

Ned Vizzini learned a lot about himself and his mom. He learned that his mom was not the lenient mom that most cool kids had. She was strict, and signed him up for things he didn't want to do. Ned learned that he needs to be more aggressive, to stand up for his rights more often. He learned that he needs to suck it up sometimes. A little elbow grease goes a long way.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on June 23, 2000
Format: Paperback
...Let's first start out with the fact that it's a commentary on a subject many people can relate to: the seemingly agonizing chapter of life called high school. Though as we all know, high school isn't that agonizing, but it's only AFTER we've moved on that we realize it. The great thing about Vizzini's book is that it 'overrides necessity.' It allows the reader to reminisce while understanding how those oh so dramatic moments which weren't really so, have somewhat shaped the people we have all become today. High school is a daring, if somewhat repressed time of one's life, and "Teen Angst ... Naaah" displays just that. Through his witty writing, and ability to recognize the comedy in every situation, and I mean every that he encounters, Vizzini relates to the reader a sense of identification that one seeks through their high school years, and comes up by the end with an individual who has acquired a good many skills thanks to his crafty intellectuality and talents. Teen Angst is great because in it's own simplicity it's funny, and easy to understand, and really, just a great array of work.
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