- File Size: 269 KB
- Print Length: 102 pages
- Publication Date: June 2, 2012
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0088JOJ7A
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,187,074 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Almost Kings Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
In this town, it appears that you marry your high school sweetheart and playing high school football is the highlight of your social experience. After high school, zero of the possible career options mentioned included college. Instead, the military and blue-collar jobs were mentioned. The town's main social scene seems to be watching their local high school compete in football.
This story includes a lot of heartbreak for young Bug who has always looked up to his older brother, Truck. Truck, in turn, protected young Bug both from their father's abuses as well as from Truck's own undesirable activities and attitudes, trying to keep young Bug on the straight and narrow. Truck's friends, however, were not aware of this plan and they tantalized Bug with ideas of alcohol consumption, skipping school, objectifying women, and engaging in sexual activity with unconscious young ladies. Truck, trying to remain a role model, is the worst offender at perpetuating these ideas.Read more ›
The drama of the novel revolves around a sinister end-of-high-school sex bet, complete with point values for attractiveness and virginity. Rape of unconscious women is explicitly encouraged, and though the word is never used, the wickedness is clear. Though this plot-line is only a few steps removed from that of a coming-of-age sex comedy, there's little fun in its execution - it ends up looking and feeling utterly hideous. This, I imagine, is part of the point.
Doty's writing is strong, and while I know this novel was released with the movie, I think it stands on its own. I do wish the novel were a little longer, as some elements (particularly the family background and the epilogue) deserved more space. Still, it was a good read, and I will be buying the movie.
Almost Kings is the story of Bug's (aka Ted Wheeler's) fall semester as a high school freshman. Bug is the younger brother of Truck (aka James Wheeler). Truck and a few of his football buddies make up a loose clique called "The Kings."
As seen through Bug's naive eyes, The Kings are hulking, tough demi-gods of their rural high school. Being heroes of the football field affords them golden ticket passage through high school. The girls desire them. The other boys fear them. They are untouchable. They are Bug's heroes.
But Bug's perception of the world around him is limited. Reading between the lines in this short novel, the truth emerges. High school administration sees The Kings as bad kids, troublemakers, brawlers. The Kings are sexual predators. They drink too much. Even Truck, the leader of The Kings, comments none of The Kings have much of a future ahead of them.
Over the course of a few months, Bug discovers the truth about his brother and the other Kings. The explosive lesson he learns will mark him for life.
The author's presentation of these kids could be interpreted as stereotyping of an entire high school or town, but I don't think it is. Kids like the ones in this novella are part of every high school social structure. Reading this reminded me of people I knew and things I saw growing up. This peek into that almost forgotten world-through Bug's eyes-is intimate, poignant...and harrowing. I'll remember the way this story made me feel for a long time.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
**spoiler alert** It was alright. Not terrible, but definitely not great. "Almost Kings" is about a 14-year-old boy, Ted, who idolizes his older brother, Truck. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Jessica Lynn
Enjoyable, light read, Kind of juvenile but kept me reading nonetheless.Published 2 months ago by Kellie Walford
When I read the description of this novel, I was a little skeptical of enjoying it. It sounded like I was in for a sordid story about teenage gang violence. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Amazon Customer
How do you explain to girls that this is a fact of youth. This book vividly shows the cruelty of broken homes, alcoholism, peer pressure, consequences of premarital sex and games... Read morePublished on July 18, 2014 by jennifer goddard
This book was written on somewhat of an elementary level. It kept my interest because I wanted to know what happened to the characters as I would if one of my children was telling... Read morePublished on July 8, 2014 by Rosemary1947
As soon as he asked for the yearbook you knew what the game was. And the fact that his brother never forgave him was rediculous. Read morePublished on June 15, 2014 by Amazon Customer
From beginning to end, this book practically forced you to read another page, another chapter. I read it in two days as I couldn't put it down. Read morePublished on April 24, 2014 by A. Avery
For a short story, this has a powerful impact, and could make a big difference in lives, if they would read and understand it. Read morePublished on April 22, 2014 by Cici