Boy21➵ [Reading] ➷ Boy21 By Matthew Quick ➪ – You can lose yourself in repetition uiet your thoughts; I learned the value of this at a very young age Basketball has always been an escape for Finley He lives in broken down Bellmont a town ruled by You can lose yourself in repetition uiet your thoughts; I learned the value of this at a very young age Basketball has always been an escape for Finley He lives in broken down Bellmont a town ruled by the Irish mob drugs violence and racially charged rivalries At home his dad works nights and Finley is left to take care of his disabled grandfather alone He's always dreamed of getting out someday but until he can putting on that number jersey makes everything seem okay Russ has just moved to the neighborhood and the life of this teen basketball phenom has been turned upside down by tragedy Cut off from everyone he knows he won't pick up a basketball but answers only to the name Boy taken from his former jersey number As their final year of high school brings these two boys together a uniue friendship may turn out to be the answer they both need. As seen on The ReadventurerThere is not nearly enough YA books about friendships For some strange reason romantic relationships are promoted as important While I agree that at some point in life you do meet that special person who becomes your partner in everything up until that point it is friends that help you out support you accompany you through lifeFriendship the healing supporting non judgmental type of friendship is what Boy21 is about Or is supposed to be aboutI love the idea of this novel Imagine Finley a reserved high school senior with some serious darkness in his past whose only friend is his girlfriendsoulmate Erin Finley's most favorite occupation his therapy of sorts is basketball His goal for his last school year is just to be on the team and play well Enter Boy21 another damaged young boy a rising basketball star who suffers from a mental breakdown after the death of his parents Finley is entrusted to guard and partner with Boy21 in school And also guide him back into playing basketball because among other things what Boy21 had lost is his passion for the gameThere is a very interesting conflict here Should Finley encourage Boy21 to play knowing that he will for sure take his place on the team? Should he sacrifice his own dreams in order to save his new friend because maybe basketball indeed has a power to heal Boy21 bring him back from the imaginary escape world he exists in now? What is important your friend's well being or your own ?To my disappointment this conflict never really comes to the front of this novel never develops to its full potential never impacts the characters as strongly as it could and should have The book that was supposed to be about Boy21 you would assume judging by the title and about the friendship bonds between the two boys is diluted and often overshadowed by the side plots Irish mob Finley's girlfriend and family problems In the end only maybe 25% of the book is about friendship and the rest just everything else I feel like Boy21 is a case of the writer having his fingers in too many idea pots The main point of the story is just lostI do not want to take away from the merits of this novel I admire uick and some passages in Boy21 made my eyes tingle But I do think this books lacks clearer focus and a better overreaching story arcAs often is with these things I am a little baffled by the overwhelmingly positive critical reception of Boy21 It has already received some serious starred reviews from several major professional publication His previous YA novel Sorta Like a Rock Star is a much accomplished work in my opinion and yet it went almost unnoticedDo I recommend Boy21? Yes but with some reservations However I do wholeheartedly recommend Matthew uick's Sorta Like a Rock Star Great I read this in just one sitting Never in a million years would I have seen that coming Ever I knew my reading of this book would be different because while there are other YA Fiction authors who explore the themes Matthew uick does such as family death loneliness or even crime he explores them in such a uniue way that I can’t help but be captivated and befuddled And yet wow It’s not even the ending that took my breath away; it’s the beginning and middle too It’s really hard I think to be bored by this book It might be slow and the main protagonist might be uiet but there’s something about it that makes you feel like you’re reading something special and that if you put it down and forget about it you’ll be missing on a potentially one time only experienceThe story is narrated by Finley a uiet high school basketball player with a long time best friend and girlfriend—Erin—who is a kickass B ball player as well Finley’s everyday life is altered by the new kid in town—Russ—who refers to himself as Boy21 an alien who is visiting Earth to learn about emotions Finley must show Russ around and help him get through his family tragedy The problem is that Russ is a basketball God and if he feels well enough to play again he’ll steal Finley’s spot on the team for sure Matthew uick kept me guessing I wish some things were handled differently but the way the author handled them was realistic and fair too Life isn’t fair but Matthew uick tried to be fair to his protagonists I respect that Blog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google | Bloglovin’ What a peculiar book I'm not saying it was necessarily too offbeat but it was different in a way I didn't expect it to be In a good way In an excellent way actually Finley is heading into his senior year Things look good for the most part As good as things can be with living in Belmont a town run by the Irish mob He's been training all summer with his girlfriend Erin for basketball season They both are on basketball teams Erin is a star on the girls’ team and is pinning her hopes on getting a basketball scholarship Finley would follow her anywhere He is the point guard on the boys’ team and though he's not good enough to get into a college team he needs basketball like air One day his coach asks him a favor to become friends from a boy out of state Finley always listens to the coach so he does what he says The new guy only goes by Boy21 Boy21 used to play basketball but his parents have been murdered and real life is too hard for him right now Together Finley and Boy21 slowly but surely become friends and this friendship changes both of them for the betteruick did uite frankly fantastic with the characterization of each character in this story It's a short book but I grew to love the characters fast What also is done well is the setting It's told through Finley's point of view so he sees his surroundings as something normal I can only describe it as gritty but not in your face gritty Finley has come to accept his situation and doesn't moan and groan about it He is a uiet character and it's cool to see how much he is thinking about while everyone else is talking Boy21 has such a great character arc in this story He goes from being fragile to strong and becomes an important person in Finley’s life It was interesting to see the correlation between Finley and Boy21 characters Their friendship is odd but it works for them The writing style is so uniue and gives the perfect atmosphere for this storyI can see how the cover could be off putting to some people because it's not that appealing but I would have to say it fits the story I wouldn't change it I was sure this book was going to become a new favorite but the book took a turn I didn't expect It wasn't bad but I wish I had seen if the story had panned out another way I know I'm being ambiguous but I don't want to give anything awayI think I need to re read this scratch that I know I should re read this It's a book about unlikely friendships overcoming obstacles and seizing hope Most of all it’s about how the most important thing you need to hold on to is people I think this is now my second favorite Matthew uick book behind Silver Linings Playbook The last one of his I read was so weird The Good Luck of Right Now that I don't even remember what it was about This one had a great story and an interesting message If you have just finished a monotonous read and need a uick pick me up only 5 hours unabridged audio this is worth giving a tryIt has some light heartedness I has some despair It has comedy It has tragedy Side note I finished this book in the middle of a 6 mile 4th of July race time 10722 is for uick 15 Stars You can lose yourself in repetition – uiet your thoughts; I learned the value of this at a very young age Boy21 is my second Matthew uick novel and as far as comparability goes I have to say that I liked Silver Linings Playbook much than this one I mentioned in a recent review The Knife of Never Letting Go I believe that there is a timeframe within a story where a telegraphed secret has to be shared – a writer can either win me over or lose me entirely based on this timing uick lost me entirely By the time he got around to sharing the big reveal I no longer gave a shit about it it was too little too late by that point This book failed to garner any emotional attachment from me; and while I found Boy21 himself very interesting I could not deal with the fact that it felt like this book wanted to be all things to all people I’m completely lost as to what genre this story falls under is it a love story? A mystery? A coming of age tale? Who even knows I initially felt it was a journey of friendship and self discovery and I was pretty keen to see how uick would play that male bonding relationship but the ending destroyed any likelihood of that As I said I’m unsure what exactly this was and for that alone this story failed me Going into this book I thought it was going to be a story about friendship and how that changes each boy's life but I was very disappointed It felt like the friendship was never given the chance to develop and was almost an afterthought and not the central theme of the story like the synopsis seemed to suggestI liked Finley and I felt for his struggles and his work ethic I liked that not being a star basketball player didn’t keep Finley from working harder than the anyone else on the team I liked how basketball was his refuge and seeing him honestly deal with his jealousy of Russ and his desire to keep his position on the team His family was interesting and well developed but I spent most of the book wondering what had traumatized him and when it was finally revealed it felt a bit too soap opera to be believed I wasn't a fan of the romance either I liked his girlfriend but their relationship seemed to dominate the story and overshadow the friendship plot which was a shame I think it was how his girlfriend's family played into the mafia story that really didn't work for meI liked the role the Irish Mafia played in the beginning of the book The threat Finley and his family felt and the fear they had felt real Closer to the end things sort of fell apart Nothing that happened in the ending felt natural or honest to the story that was told so far Like Finley’s tragedy things just felt overdone and the motivations of the players was unclear They were willing to do terrible things and that just didn’t fit with the resolution of the story It was almost a miracle sort of ending and I didn’t like thatI found Russ to be very interesting and I would have liked to see him and Finley develop a stronger bond of trust and friendship I wanted that plot to develop but it never really did I wanted to see them get to know each other better and watch their friendship grow and I didn’t like that I felt cheated of that opportunity I liked how Finley grew to understand Russ better and see how the world Russ built helped him deal with the world but I felt like that moved a bit too uickly and was just sort of droppedOverall it wasn't bad but it felt like I never got the book the synopsis promised The plot that I found most interesting seemed to be be dropped in favor of what I felt were the weaker aspects 45 Stars“You don’t always get to pick the role you’re going to play in life but it’s good to play whatever role you got the best way you can”Fate and its fun little twists can bring people together When we need a push or hand life seems to provide inspiration or help in one form or another I believe with all my heart that we bump into and find people in this world when we need them the most No matter how far we have to go—through time land space or high school In Matthew uick’s Boy 21 two lost souls meet and help guide each other through loss pain competition basketball and so much Finley McManus’s life revolves around basketball He lives ands breaths b ball in a town that supports it with a girlfriend who loves the game just as much as he does Basketball and Erin came into Finley’s life when he needed them the most The rhythm of the game and Erin’s love made the noise and pain go away—go silent With their senior year about to start Erin and Finley are training and hoping for starting positions and winning seasons that could get them out of Bellmont’s beat up streets and crime But everything changes when Boy 21 lands in town threatening to crash down Finley’s season and his wall of silence that hides all sorts of family skeletons and historyBoy 21 Russ is trying to survive and grieve the loss of his parents The way Finley listens connects and supports Russ’s uirks and style made my heart very happy He cares and shows it That might sound simple but also very rare and huge in life I adored both boys immediately With silence shrugs nods a “calming presence” and the stars up above these boys forge a friendship that changes and impacts both of their worlds forever Worlds filled with pain and secrets too hard to face straight on They dodge and throw up defenses that made me giggle and my heart ache Both Finley and Russ hide within themselves but communicate and show their emotions in different ways ”You ever feel like you’re not the person on the outside that you are on the inside?”Matthew uick’s cut straight to the heart style words and characters captured my attention and heart from the opening uote The use and power of silence in this story was what amazed and hit me the hardest though Merely sitting and sharing space with Erin or Boy 21 Finley could project such emotion and peace on the page and in my heart The force was pure awe inspiring and dazzling Every character—Finley Boy 21 Erin LOVED you girl Let’s hang out Pop The Allens Coach Wes and even Mr Harry Potter himself—all came together to add layers dimension humor pain and love to this story In a town torn and roughed up with violence silence drugs and racial tensions perhaps a little dose of magic and wonder is just what they need to heal and show them what truly matters on the court and offI wish I could say about why Russ goes by Boy 21 or why Finley is so uiet but that would spoil everything Just know though I spent the last thirty pages in tears A very powerful read filled with the magic of friendship basketball healing and glow in the dark stars Finley and Boy 21 taught me to support and hold tight to the people in my life It can change in an instant I hope you let this story into your heart and life It is one I will not forget any time soonAdded bonus I love when one book inspires me to read another book DThis book inspired me to finally pick up Harry Potter I know I know How I made it this far in life without reading Harry Potter amazes me too Cara Thank you once again It was your lovely review that inspired me to pick this book up Along with Janfra’s push to read it now Thank you so much Ladies After reading Matthew uick's amazing novel Forgive Me Leonard Peacock earlier this year I was thrilled to have the opportunity to review the author's latest release in the UK now aimed at a younger audienceAfter being so impressed by the first book I read from uick I admit I had incredibly high expectations for this one and because of this it was hard to give it a fair shot as it simply wasn't uite as good as Leonard Peacock Don't get me wrong this was still an excellent piece of writing particularly aimed at this age group but it wasn't one of those novels I can't stop thinking about and I find myself recommending extensively to everyone who is looking for a new readIn fact while I was impressed by the writing whilst reading I kept putting off publishing my review as I found it difficult to think of something defining to say about the novel What made it stand out from other reads and why should people pick it up when dozens of new books get published each week?The story centers on Finley a bit of a misfit he lives for the game of basketball a passion he shares with his one and only friend also his girlfriend Erin The two are glued at the hip during off season though they have a rule that they take a break during b ball season so they can fully focus on the sport and their roles in their respective teamsAs the only white player in his team Finley is used to being an outcast but he is okay with that because he has Erin his dad and Pop However his role in the team and the fact that he's somewhat removed from his team mates make him according to his coach the perfect person to befriend a new kid ho is about to join the same high school one who goes by the name of Boy21Boy21 formerly known as Russell was a basketball wunderkind who hasn't played since his parents were murdered Now having moved in with distant relatives his family hopes that he can make a fresh start at a new school and perhaps even snap out of his obsession with outer space They think that with a kindhearted friend like Finley this may be possible The only problem is that Boy21 was one of the best basketball players of his age in the country and if Finley does help him and he gets his mojo back then they'll be competing for the same spot in the teamWith big letters a slightly simplistic form of storytelling and a low page number this is definitely a novel aimed at a younger audience but that doesn't make the themes of acceptance and friendship that run through it any less valid In fact aimed at such an impressionable audience it's even important to show what a difference a kind word and an offer of friendship can bring to the life of someone who is traumatised and brokenI loved seeing the dynamic between Finley and Boy21 and in a smaller way Erin change throughout the course of the novel Yes there were up and downs as neither of the characters were selfless angels but in the end they knew what was right and what was wrong and it's their unusual bond that gets them through the toughest of times when a secret from Finley's past comes back to make his life miserableWhile Boy21 had a gentle start of hesitating friendship and loyalty it burst into a roller coaster ride of revelations towards the end And it was heartwarming to read how even the most unlikeliest of people can form such meaningful relationships and change the course of another person's life Finley's entire life is basketball and he trains tirelessly even though he's nowhere near the best player on the team As his dad says effort can outwork talent Basketball consumes his every waking thought and he wouldn't have it any other way Without basketball and the team he'd have too much time to remember all of the things he's desperate to forget Russ is new to town a basketball phenom who's love of the game died with his parents Now he's calling himself Boy21 saying he's an alien life form and obsessed with outer space Can Finley do as his coach asks and somehow help Russ even if it means giving up his hard earned starting spot? Sometimes a player's greatest challenge is coming to grips with his role on the team Scottie Pippen No matter how good one player is defensively he's only as good as his help defense sourceAnd that is exactly what Boy21 is about except Matthew uick isn't talking about basketball He's talking about life Sure basketball brings Finley and Russ together and at different times and in different ways it acts as a savior for both boys But as all consuming and amazing and beautiful as it can be both Finley and Russ are forced to experience how tragedy can make anything insignificant even your heretofore reason for living Sometimes it doesn't matter how much you love something Real life has a way of changing your priorities and when it does it's the team you have around you that countsAll of Matthew uick's trademarks are here rough neighborhood sad histories finding non romantic love in a hopeless place unconventional friendships and support systems a tragic event and behind it all a hope so earnest it's almost hard to endure There's a shift in direction between the first and second half and I think the book suffers from some confusion with the focus of the second half Some decisions and conclusions seem very abrupt Still there's much to love about Boy 21 especially the relationships between Finley his dad and Pops and Finley and Russ Like Sorta Like a Rock Star the ending is a little too convenient to seem wholly realistic but by the time you get there you are so won over by the protagonists that you are willing to forgive just about anything to believe good things can happen for themYou might not know this about me but I'm a huge basketball fan Obviously I loved reading such a well done basketball book It's fitting though that I finished this book the same night I watched my favorite team get eliminated in the NBA playoffs But instead of being bummed thanks to Matthew uick maybe tonight I'll go out on my porch look at the stars and think about things bigger than basketballRating 35 stars with an inclination to round up This review originally appeared on Young Adult Anonymous

Boy21 PDF/EPUB ¿ Paperback
  • Paperback
  • 272 pages
  • Boy21
  • Matthew Quick
  • English
  • 05 September 2016
  • 9780316127967