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Book review: The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl by Barry Lyga

the cover of The astonishing adventures of Fanboy & Goth Girl
I’d seen this book around, but had always had something more urgent to read at hand. Not in a bad way, just in that way that it so often is with books.

So I was finally in a situation where I had a lot of free time, an e-reader, and a connection to Overdrive, the service that my library uses to access e-books. I browsed the YA selections, pressed the download button, and started to read.

So it’s a loner-comes-out-of-his-shell narrative. Our protagonist Fanboy (who’s the subject of bullying at school and a shitty family at home) meets Goth girl Kyra (basically a manic pixie dream girl who isn’t given enough dimension, in my opinion) who pretty much befriends him out of nowhere and widens his world, sort of. Over the course of the book he learns to respect his art, stands up for himself in a pretty sassy way, and kind of makes things better with his family. Kyra, on the other hand, gets crazier and crazier, though this novel doesn’t dwell on that (I just learned that there is a sequel— maybe Kyra gets whole?).

The book ends on a note that seems to be unsatisfying and incomplete. Sure, everything’s starting to look up for Fanboy– but it’s hard to feel too happy for him when you never even learned his real name.

So I was disappointed with certain elements of the book– but it’s still worth reading. Fanboy’s observations about the messed up adults in his life are spot-on and took me back to my own teen years. Also, if you’re a comics person, there’s some comic-related stuff that you’ll like.

The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl by Barry Lyga

Find a copy here.



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