- File Size: 713 KB
- Print Length: 296 pages
- Publisher: Flying Body Press (September 14, 2016)
- Publication Date: September 14, 2016
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B01J3YGF2K
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #358,087 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Print List Price:||$9.99|
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How To Be A Vigilante: A Diary Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Nigel Carmelite is an eighteen-year-old boy who hasn’t had an easy life. There are allusions to problems in his past, but most of them are barely mentioned (although there is a very sad story about a boy and his bike) and their impacts on Nigel’s life are left to the reader to determine. We learn about his current life: he works in a supermarket; he is a loner, mostly because he doesn’t know how to interact with other people; he has a crush on a girl at work; and he is keeping a diary to record his journey from “normal” guy to superhero so that others can learn from him and follow in his footsteps. He believes this is his destiny.
But Nigel isn’t a “normal” person, whatever “normal” is supposed to mean in his world or ours. He is damaged. The circumstances of his early years took their toll on him and he never received the help he needed. He created his own world where he was the good guy and he was the guy who was always right. He couldn’t exist any other way because “normal” life hurt too much. If Nigel lived in the US, he is the type of person who would shoot up a public place and then turn the gun on himself, and later, people would say he was “quiet” and “always did his job” but was difficult to get to know because he was so ill-at-ease around others.
Some people have commented that their dislike of Nigel hurt their ability to enjoy the book fully. That is unfortunate. If all a person does is read the words on the page, Nigel is a jerk. He writes with disdain about most other people he knows. If you read between the lines, however, you can see he insults others because he thinks they are getting in the way of him fulfilling his destiny.
He also knows the rest of the world sees him as a loser, if they even notice he exists, but he rarely lets himself acknowledge that reality. You can see this in a few diary entries where he talks about how stupid he is (quite vehemently), but he always comes back to blaming other people for his troubles. He HAS to be right or he can’t be the superhero. By putting down everyone else, he is building himself up into the person he believes he really is.
The book is very well-written. Nigel is a person you can empathize with because there is a small part of him in all of us. Yes, it is humorous in many places, but there are also moments that may leave you in tears. The most impressive thing, however, is how incidents in Nigel’s life are shown to repeat themselves (in different contexts), forming patterns that turned him into the person he is. Some of these are obvious, but others are very subtle so the readers are left to discover them and determine for themselves how they impacted Nigel. That is not an easy thing for an author to do, but here, it is done beautifully.
This book covers a very short time period in Nigel’s life, but by the end, we know everything we need to know about him and why he needs to be a superhero—because he does need it. He may come across as a jerk at first, but that is just covering up his insecurities and lack of self-worth. His diary is funny because he is so earnest about the things he is writing, even though they are preposterous. Nigel could never comprehend that we are laughing AT him, not with him. The only way he knows to make his life worth something is to become a superhero, which, ultimately, is the saddest part of the story and leads to unintended, heartbreaking consequences.
If you don’t fully appreciate the brilliance of this book at first (I didn’t), read it again. You will catch things you missed the first time and will, hopefully, fully appreciate the skill that went into crafting it. There are too many Nigel Carmelite’s out there. Most don’t try to become superheroes; most live their lives quietly and alone and we never know they exist. That is the true message we should learn from this book.
There are Nigels all over, but most of us are too caught up in our own daily lives to see them or attempt to help them. Maybe we should try a little bit more. Maybe we’re too busy to see their hands desperately reaching out to us or maybe they’ve given up. Nigel is virtually screaming for help throughout this book. No one hears him or maybe they are too busy laughing at him to notice. So, in the only way he knows, he resorts to helping himself. He adapts to the circumstances of his world—and loses so much in the process.
I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
How To Be A Vigilante is another homerun for Smitherd! I was immersed in the thoughts of a troubled teen aspiring to become a hero. His diary invites us into his every day goals, aspirations, as well as tribulations in his mission to become a vigilante. I started off with feelings of enmity but as I continued I found myself empathizing with Nigel.
Great book from start to finish.
Although I was hoping for a touch of sci-fi or supernatural as I've become accustomed to, Luke kept me completely fixated, pondering what would happen next. I absolutely recommend this book, especially to those who have already enjoyed Smitherd's work. I started off reading The Stone Man and was hooked!
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Definitely worth reading this book. It's different than Smitherd's other books but not a complete departure either. And also read the afterword. It's an interesting story about how we became able to read someone else's diary.
was really shocked by the graphic violence of one of the scenes.I don't think for the most part I'm easily put off or offended
by violence in books but this one actually made me sick to my stomach and *spoilers* I had to skip through multiple pages
of brutal torture.
Not a bad read but not for the faint of heart.
I got this book for free for an honest review.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
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Nigel Carmelite is the 18yr old...Read more