AR Level: 4.9 Points: 5
Interest Level: Upper Grades
I read this one while riding in the truck with my husband, listening to our two daughters alternate, as only sisters can, between bickering and giggling in the back seat. It's difficult for me to put into words the way I felt upon finishing this book. the main character, Keir Sarafian, is twisted--but he has a way of convincing himself (and the reader, to a point) that nothing he does is in reality the way it seems--from vandalism and hazing to other horrible acts--he continuously excuses his behavior and convinces himself that he's done nothing wrong. He's a master of self-deception, and of justifying his actions, no matter how horrific.
To quote Keir: "Here's what can happen: You can look at a thing and at the time it will look funny, if conditions are right. In the mean light of day an event from the night before might look plain nasty, but that does not automatically render it nasty, even in its context. Even if I might partway agree with you about the nastiness in the light, that still doesn't mean that at its original time the thing itself couldn't have been a very different, better thing."
I do think this is a book that teenage boys should read. It is written in the language of a teenage boy, and has many messages that young men coming of age need to hear.