- Hardcover: 240 pages
- Publisher: HarperTeen; 1 edition (August 24, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0061947040
- ISBN-13: 978-0061947049
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,600,583 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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You Hardcover – August 24, 2010
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From School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up–As the book opens, Kyle Chase wonders how he got himself into the dire situation he's in. Reflecting on the start of the school year, he recalls how his grades fell and he enrolled at Midlands High, while his friends headed to Odyssey. He met the hoodie crew and adopted their uniform of jeans, T-shirt, and black-hooded sweatshirts. He suppressed the guilt he felt after the group broke into the school. He tried to do the right thing and return a stolen wallet, but got suspended for three days for fighting. Doing catch-up work in the library, Kyle encounters witty and sarcastic Zack and chooses to follow him around. However, after losing a job opportunity, a potential girlfriend, and the respect of a teacher, Kyle begins to suspect that he is being sabotaged. Benoit's choice of second-person perspective allows readers to explore Kyle's motivations fully, but infuses the narrative with a moralizing undertone; an undertone that erupts during the teen's climactic self-evaluation. However, the sense of persecution and unfairness that dominates the text accurately captures his perspective. While the teen characters are well developed, the casual attention paid to the adults is obvious. When Kyle is offhandedly dismissed by his mother in an overheard conversation with his younger sister, the emotional response is honest and visceral. The rapid pace is well suited to the narrative, though sophisticated readers will be able to identify the twist exactly halfway through. In the end, Benoit creates a fully realized world where choices have impact and the consequences of both action and inaction can be severe.Chris Shoemaker,The New York Public Library
© Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Fifteen-year-old Kyle is a member of the “hoodies.” So named for their ubiquitous hooded sweatshirts, they are the slackers/burnouts/freaks common to every high school. In fact, Kyle would be the first to admit his commonness—he gets picked on by bullies, he serves detention, he pines after a girl. The deadness he feels is impinged upon by the arrival of Zack, a private-academy transfer who wears sports coats, quotes philosophers, laughs at Shakespeare, and seems to have every student and teacher in the palm of his hand. Zack takes on Kyle as a sort of project, but his swank parties and daring escapades soon turn to deeds far darker. Benoit's stylistic gamble here is the use of the second person—you, the reader, are Kyle. The gimmickry of it quickly fades; in fact, the reader identification helps fill in the gaps of an otherwise watery protagonist. Zack is a theatrical, Iago-like villain, and he makes a great foil to Kyle's antihero in their twisted relationship. This is a brutal, fast, and satisfying read. Grades 8-12. --Daniel Kraus
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Top customer reviews
Kyle Chase is a 15 years old who attends Midlands HS. He hates school and home equally, but the only thing that seems to make him happy, is his school crush for a Italian descent beauty Ashley. After an incident that almost gets him physically beat up by the school's bully/jock, he meets Zack. Zack is a transfer from a private school that has an eccentric personality. Kyle doesn't warm up to him right away, but ends accepting him, since they both play off each other's yin-yang personalities. Zach though isn't as kind or sweet as one would hope for -- he's a master motivator who doesn't care who hurts. It's not until Kyle is pushed the brink when his usual friend makes a play for his school crush and proves to be deathly circumstances that cause Kyle to do the unthinkable by the end of this story.
I supremely enjoyed this book. It's a fast paced and easy read but the story is whether realistic and shows that one's anger and choices can come back to haunt one sure enough. The story is powerful and keeps you hanging at the edge of your sit. It also reminds me of Larry Clark's Bully in a lot of way's especially when it comes to Kyle and Zach in comparsion to Marty and Bobby. I know some will probably not be too fond of the ending because it gives a "incomplete" finish, but sometimes with stories of this magnitude, I like an open-ended finish and I was greatly satisfied. Good book, Mr. Benoit!
Kyle Chase is a loser...in his own mind. He has dropped out...he has made poor choices, he doesn't care, he doesn't like the way his parents treat him, he doesn't respect his teachers, he doesn't really even like his friends. He knows if he had made other choices he would be in a different school doing very different things. And yet he is not. And there is nothing he can do about it. He has everyone figured out. He has life figured out and he is not able to change anything. He doesn't know how or even better he knows how and yet he doesn't want to do anything to change. He appears to be stuck. He gets detention after detention, he doesn't study, he yearns after a girl named Ashley and does not do anything about it. He wonders when his mom became awkward around him and when his dad began to dislike him. He seems to love his little 5 year old sister. Her innocence and her love for him mean a lot to him. One day he hears his sister tell his mom that when she grows up she wants to be just like Kyle. When his mom responds that she hopes not...Kyle is sad even though he doesn't want to be.
Then...new student Zack comes into Kyle's life and nothing will ever be the same again. Zack knows how to find Kyle's weak spot and use it to his own advantage. This results in a devastating end of this story.
I was really caught up in this story. It is narrated by Kyle. It was heartbreaking. I wondered what I would do if I had known someone like Kyle. He is intelligent, awkward, rebellious...all the things a 15 year old male can be. I don't know if I would have gone out of my way to talk to him. It seemed as though all he needed was one understanding parent or one teacher he could talk to but all circumstances were against him. He walked alone. His story was so sad. He seemed to not know joy. He did not understand what to do with his tortured anger.
So...how did I feel about this book...I think it is an important book to read
And the story itself is an engaging one; Benoit does a good job of revealing pieces of backstory gradually, and keeping you in suspense. This is the first book of his I've read, and it definitely makes me want to check out more of his work.
This one is different.
Not bad, just a bit short.
I would have given this to my boys to read, but they are a bit too old for it now.
It was a nice quick read.
The story is believable and to a degree educational as an insight into the adolescent mind.
Most recent customer reviews
I had received a signed copy of You by Charles Benoit almost three years ago during a workshop I attended with him.Read more
I don't think that's a big enough adjective to describe how I feel about You. First of all, I love that it's written in second person.Read more