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Hachette Book Group
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Reality Boy Kindle Edition
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|Length: 383 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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A.S. King does a tremendous job looking beyond the surface and the camera editing and sees into the heart and soul of Gerald, and Hannah, and anyone else's life behind closed doors. Ignoring things does not make them go away, and frequently it just makes things worse. And amidst the evil, for lack of a better word, there is also hope. With every terrible character, there is a person with a flicker of hope, wanting something better and wishing that for another. And I love that Gerald gives me hope, beyond him just trying to stay out of jail. There is hope in this story, but there is a tough fight to get there, and I loved the journey. (Also, the world can always use more Hockey ladies.)
And what a cast of characters we have. We are primarily looking at Gerald. And I loved Gerald. I wanted to hug him and steal him away and raise him with my three sons. Watching him go through his revelations was heart-breaking, yet he was so strong in character and I admired him for it. Gerald's messed up family plays a key role in his life and we get plenty of insight into how screwed up they are and why they do, and have done, the things they do. And while this is a work of fiction, there is truth in the inter-weavings of the story. There is truth that not only is there is so much behind the scenes of Reality TV, but there is so much beyond the "reality" of what people show in their daily lives.
This is not only a reflection on childhood, but also on parenthood. On doing the right thing. On choosing something uncomfortable because it is the right thing to do. On protecting the little guy. On not being blind to the truth and seeing what's really there and not just what you want. On taking responsibility and not just waiting around. There is truth that the way we parent, or don't parent, affects our children negatively or positively. I've witnessed these things, as I'm sure we all have. And I liked how the author addressed this.
This is my first A.S. King novel, but it certainly won't be my last.
Gerald seems like a guy that I would have definitely wanted to be friends with in high school. Everyone has their thing that they going through in high school, but Gerald is able to go through it with his head held high. I loved the mix of behind-the-scenes of the show and the present because it really showed the impact on the entire family but on Gerald in particular. I really did not like the anger management counselor he was probably forced to go to, Roger. He bothered me so because not only was he not a legitimate therapist but he seemed to be get off on Gerald's anger flare ups, like the boxing incident with Jacko, "The fake Jamaican".
I love Gerald and Hannah together. There seems to be something about their relationship is so genuine. When Hannah took Gerald to Ashley and Nathan's house to see all the aquariums, it was like she was opening herself up to him in not so many words. Their rules were really just more well defined boundaries that we all have in all types of relationships, I just don't believe that they were ever able to have relationships with boundaries until this point. After they kidnapped themselves and had a bit of an adventure, I really think they could make it.
In case you didn't hear me--read REALITY BOY.