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The Every Boy Paperback – February 28, 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"So many young writers have been described as 'Salingeresque'...it's a shock to come across one who fits the bill." --Tom Perrotta
"A story told with a savage disquiet wrapped in a disarming, triumphant hope." — J.T. Leroy, author of Sarah and The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things
Top Customer Reviews
While Henry's propensity for quirky affectations and color-coded diary entries may incite readers to compare him to a certain Salinger protagonist, Henry is decidedly more optimistic. And while he often dons the cap of world-weariness, much of his delicately rendered observations are peppered with a kind of zany enthusiasm and almost child-like joy. Readers will have to decide for themselves which image of teenage boyhood rings truer, and while they may end up choosing Salinger's, Shapiro's is utterly disarming. Fifteen-year-olds with the sensitivity and awareness of Henry may be hard to come by, but we can still hold out hope that they exist.
Similarly, all the characters that flit through the pages of this novel are hopeful creations, so vivid and bizarre and wonderful that we can't help but hope they will leap off the page and into our worlds. Henry has a hard-drinking, gumbo-loving grandmother named Lulu who lives in a kind of perfect, symbiotic dysfunction with and her brash and fiery Cuban maid Papi; his Scandinavian mother cultivates ant-farms and mangles American platitudes, rendering them somehow truer; and the love of his short life, Benna, has only one hand.
These various personas are more than just amalgamations of quirks and oddities.Read more ›
"Salinger, schmalinger! Burgeoning comparisons notwithstanding, you could black out every other paragraph in The Every Boy and it would still outcharm Catcher in the Rye. Outperform it, too. Icon magazine co-founder and former Spin senior editor Dana Adam Shapiro's debut novel does triple duty as mystery, exploration of love, and aborted coming-of-age story."
-- TIME OUT: NEW YORK
"I did not choose to review this book so much because of the plot - entertaining as it may be - but because of what I feel will be the lasting power of this book. Teenage angst has never been more intense. I believe The Every Boy could be taught in classrooms some day."
-- THE DAILY MISSISSIPPIAN
"This is a brilliant novel by an extraordinarily talented writer. Anyone who reads it with care will see immediately that it isn't Salinger or Roth or anyone else. It is Shapiro, a wonderful, new, surprising talent, whose writing is already elegantly refined."
-- MICHAEL PAYNE, author of Reading Theory: An Introduction to Lacan, Derrida and Kristeva
One thing I would like to address: I have heard many call Shapiro's work empty or hackneyed, citing that he attempts to substitute idiosyncratic characters in lieu of deeper meaning. Granted, the characters are quirky at the least and, for some, simply too eccentric to be recognized as "true" characters. Though we may have seen the "precocious teen/eccentric family" archetype reaching its pinnacle in both literature and film in the last decade or so, the oddities of the characters in Shapiro's work are far from relevant when considering the work using a holistic approach. I agree that such characters might veil deeper meanings, but this is the brilliance behind the work; it is simply up to the audience to lift the veil and search for the universal truths about love, loss, and "jellyfish" the Every Boy communicates while still employing that dark humor we all have come to love.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a great little book of inspiration, especially for those with wanderlust! Bruce Poon Tip & GAdventures have made a difference in the world for the good. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Bwana
My favorite book of all my favorites. There are so many lines in this book that stop me in my tracks. Read it over every year. Thank you for this book.Published 17 months ago by Tina Moore
1/2 way through reading this book I wondered if the book was going anywhere and what was the point.Published on December 10, 2007 by Fuzzy Lizard
if you've never heard of the Jersey Devil or an irukandji or an apotemnophile, if you hated high school, believe in love, like whipits and David Lynch, and if you just want to read... Read morePublished on October 9, 2007 by Say LA
THE EVERY BOY is the story 15 year old Henry who, we discover right in the beginning, has recently died. Read morePublished on August 20, 2007 by Ellen Hanson
i picked this book up the other day, a different size than all the others on the shelf. and lo and behold, mr. Read morePublished on June 26, 2007 by cassandra
i really like this book. a friend suggested it to me and at first i thougt it was going to be sad... but he said it was funny and i trusted him. it is so funny and cute. Read morePublished on March 14, 2007 by A. Feld
"The Every Boy" recalls the trials and tribulations of a boy's adolescence, the ups and downs of relationships with family and friends, and a battle for attention. Read morePublished on September 4, 2006 by Kayo