Friday, June 24, 2011

ARC Review: Stupid Fast by Geoff Herbach


Fifteen-year-old Felton Reinstein has always been on the smallish side, but in his sophomore year he starts growing...and growing.

During gym one day he smokes the football jocks in a 600-yard race. Felton has never been interested in sports, but there's no doubt-he is "stupid fast." As he juggles his newfound athletic prowess, his mom's sudden depression, an annoying little brother, and his first love, he discovers a shocking secret about his past which explains why he's turning out the way he is.


Published June 1st 2011 by Sourcebooks Fire

Available: Stupid Fast | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository

The Elliott Review:

The writing style of this book is what makes it shine. At first I was worried because Felton's thoughts flow a little differently than is typical for most books, but after the first few chapters I was hooked on Felton! His point of view is unique and funny in an understated, sarcastic sort of way. He's nutty and sensitive and yet still a boy who doesn't like talking about feelings or focusing on the hard parts of life. I love all the hyperboles and exaggerations. It makes Felton very, very real.

The psychological issues in the book are presented in a way that doesn't make this feel like an "issue" book while at the same time really grabbing the heartstrings. Felton never really takes a victim approach to what has happened to him in life, though he definitely could. I love the way he can gain release from some of his family issues through physical exertion. I like how Felton doesn't find the "easy" way out. Though he ultimately has to face his problems, it's not like they just magically go away.

Also, the author very skilfully peels back the layers of Felton's family's past in a totally organic way. There's enough mystery and emotional tension lying just beneath the surface of the main narrative to make this book a real page turner.

Young Adult Notes:

This book, due to the awesome cover with a football player on it, will draw in boys initially. However, anyone who likes to really identify with a character will love this book. It's funny and just dark enough to really prove gripping to middle age kiddos as well as young adult. There is a little bit of language, but it's not there for shock value. I could easily put this on my special shelf for seventh graders without worrying. It's a little over their heads, but the thoughtful kids that would stay with the book at that age are capable of dealing with the subject matter. This is a book that will hook anyone right in.

Source: Thanks to The Teen {Book} Scene for organizing this blog tour and for providing a review copy of the book. You can view other stops on the tour here.

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