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Library Journal (starred): "A stupendous, thought-provoking, devilishly delicious novel."

Date: Aug 15 2011

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Sixteen-year-old Wes, the protagonist of this literary experience of teenage angst, attends Manhattan’s elite Dalton School but lives downtown in the Village. A modern Holden Caulfield with an iPhone (though he’s both smarter and more interesting than Salinger’s antihero), Wes tolerates a mentally absent father, cares for a slowly dying mother, and protects his younger sister. The narrative proceeds organically through Wes’s turmoil about losing his virginity to the “wrong” person. As he comes to grips with his fears, the unexpected happens; he is pleasantly surprised by life and rediscovers the authenticity of a real human relationship. In the midst of this tumultuous awakening, we experience his closeness with real people. This is magic. This is hope. In addition, we learn how to cook sweetbreads! VERDICT Browner (The Uncertain Hour) has crafted a stupendous, thought-provoking, devilishly delicious novel that reads like Zen koan meets Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man with some modern “english” that sets the plate spinning. Highly recommended.—Henry Bankhead, Los Gatos P.L., CA