REALITY BOY: Coming October 22, 2013
“Timely, incisive, compassionate. All of A.S. King’s novels are must-reads.”
—Matthew Quick, New York Times bestselling author of The Silver Linings Playbook
“Fearless and brilliant, a seething pressure cooker of a masterpiece.”—Andrew Smith, author of Winger and The Marbury Lens
Title: Reality Boy
Author: A.S. King
Release Date: October 22, 2013
Free Preview of the first 14 Chapters: Amazon
Genre: YA | Fiction | Contemporary
Gerald Faust knows exactly when he started feeling angry: the day his mother invited a reality television crew into his five-year-old life. Twelve years later, he is still haunted by his rage-filled youth—, which the entire world got to watch from every imaginable angle—and his anger issues have resulted in violent outbursts, zero friends, and clueless adults dumping him in the special education room at school.
Nothing is ever going to change. No one cares that he has tried to learn to control himself, and the girl he likes has no idea who he really is. Everyone is just waiting for him to snap…and he is starting to feel dangerously close to doing just that.
In this fearless portrayal of a boy on the edge, highly acclaimed Printz Honor author A.S. King explores the desperate reality of a former child “star” who finally breaks free of his anger by creating possibilities he never knew he deserved.
5 of 5 Reality Boy
Reality Boy is one of those books that grabs you right from the first page and keeps you reading because it is like watching a train wreck and not being able to look away. We see it all the time on TV reality shows that range from kids to adults behaving badly, making poor choices, or just plain out stupid. I hate to say this and please don't get offended but reality TV is so over rated and sometimes just horrible to watch. I mean crap how many times can we watch someone get their behind kicked or girls cat fighting or parents being told they are poor parents and need parental classes. How many cheating, lying, back stabbing shows can we watch? Don't get me wrong I watch some but I have stopped watching a lot because they become to much. I mean how much should be told on TV? Privacy anyone????????????
So Reality Boy is about a boy Gerald who at five his mother decides she is going to let reality TV in her life. They follow Gerald and everything he does and each time he does something bad or good or in between the world sees it. Can you imagine how Gerald feels because he never consented to being filmed but his mother sure as hell consented. So we get to read about Gerald's life and get to see that now the show is over and Gerald is left lost and confused. He is acting out and has so much ANGER that it is hard to control it.
But Gerald is a survivor and he learns that being destructive is not going to get him anywhere and he needs to start acting right. He meets Hannah just as he starts changing his life around and with the added feelings of love and self worthiness Gerald sets out on the path of rightness! This is a must read book that comes out in October 2013.
* "Heart-pounding and heartbreaking...This is no fairy-tale romance, but a compulsively readable portrait of two imperfect teens learning to trust each other."—Kirkus Reviews (starred)
* "This is a story about healing, and although Gerald stumbles as he takes his first steps, his candor invites sympathy from the first page." —Publishers Weekly (starred)
* "King’s trademarks–attuned first-person narrative, convincing dialogue, realistic language, and fitting quirkiness–connect effectively in this disturbing, yet hopeful novel."—SLJ (starred)
"We all know at least one teen that needs a book like this; I didn't know I needed it until I turned the last page."—SLJTeen
"The TMZ-level draw of the premise will definitely pull readers in, but they’ll find a surprising amount to relate to in this smart and sympathetic story about breaking free from the world’s expectations." —The Bulletin
"Reality Boy showcases King's talent, telling a story that is as much about parental depression and denial as it is about teen rage. It's also about first love, celebrity, therapy and finding your own narrative despite the story your family--and sometimes the world--tells about you."—Shelf Awareness
“A.S. King at her best, and maybe then some. This book is tough and funny and smart as hell.”—Chris Crutcher, author of Period 8 and Whale Talk
“REALITY BOY is a powerhouse of insight and empathy toward the people who cruise the fringes of acceptable behavior. A.S. King takes all kinds of risks and every single one pays off. Highly recommended.”—Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of ROT & RUIN and FIRE & ASH
“Reality Boy is A.S. King's best work to date. Touching and teeth-clenchingly emotional, this story is an important reminder that behind every reality show...may be a totally different reality.”—Jennifer Brown, author of Hate List and Thousand Words
I Am Reality Boy: Excerpt
I’m the kid you saw on TV.
Remember the little freak who took a crap on his parents’ oak-stained kitchen table when they confiscated his Game Boy? Remember how the camera cleverly hid his most private parts with the glittery fake daisy and sunflower centerpiece?
That was me. Gerald. Youngest of three. Only boy. Out of control.
One time, I did it in the dressing room at the mall. Sears, I think. My mom was trying to get me to try on some pants and she got the wrong size.
“Now you stay right there,” she said. “I’ll be back with the right size.”
And to protest having to wait, or having to try on pants, or having to have a mother like her, I dropped one right there between the wicker chair and the stool where Mom’s purse was.
And no. It wasn’t excusable. I wasn’t a baby. I wasn’t even a toddler. I was five. I was sending a message.
You all watched and gasped and put your hands over your eyes as three different cameramen caught three different angles of my squeezing one out on the living room coffee table, next to the cranberry-scented holiday candle ensemble. Two guys held boom mikes. They tried to keep straight faces, but they couldn’t. One of them said, “Push it out, kid!” He just couldn’t help himself. I was so entertaining.
Gerald the spoiled little brat. Gerald the kid who threw violent tantrums that left holes in the drywall and who screamed so loud it made the neighbors call the police. Gerald the messed-up little freak who needed Network Nanny’s wagging finger and three steps to success.
Now I’m a junior in high school. And every kid in my class has seen forty different angles of me crapping in various places when I was little. They call me the Crapper. When I complained to the adults in my life back in middle school, they said, “Fame has its downside.”
Fame? I was five.
At five years old, did I have the capacity to write the producers a letter begging Network Nanny to come and help me stop punching the walls of my parents’ swanky McMansion? No. I did not have that capacity. I did not write that letter. I did not want her to come.
But she came anyway.
So I got madder.
Reality Boy Playlist:
(Songs I listened to while I wrote the book, so expect some obscure things.)
(Most of these are not safe for work. Whatever that means.)
1. Rage Against the Machine "Bullet in the Head"
2. Jane's Addiction "Ted, Just Admit It..."
3. Jane's Addiction "Ocean Size"
4. Pearl Jam "Rearviewmirror"
5. Adam and the Ants "Kings of the Wild Frontier"
6. The Pretenders "Waste Not Want Not"
7. Elvis Costello "I'm Not Angry"
8. Eminem "Way I Am"
9. Jimi Hendrix "Belly Button Window"
10. Jimi Hendrix "If 6 Was 9"
11. Aretha Franklin "Eleanor Rigby"
12. OKGo "Television"
13. Nirvana "Stay Away"
14. Fishbone "Subliminal Fascism"
15. Portishead "Wandering Star"
16. Public Enemy "Night of the Living Bassheads"
17. Radiohead "Paranoid Android"
18. The Rolling Stones "Gimme Shelter"
19. Tricky "Hell Is Around the Corner"
About A.S. King:
A.S. King is the author of the 2012 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Winner, Ask the Passengers, Everybody Sees the Ants, a 2012 ALA Top Ten Book for Young Adults and Andre Norton Award nominee, and the Edgar Award nominated, 2011 Michael L. Printz Honor Book Please Ignore Vera Dietz.
She is also the author of the ALA Best Books for Young Adults Dust of 100 Dogs, an adult short story collection, Monica Never Shuts Up, and the upcoming REALITY BOY (2013). After a decade living self-sufficiently and teaching literacy to adults in Ireland, she now lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and children.
For more author information, fun facts, book report fodder, go to The OFFICIAL A.S. KING AUTHOR PAGE.