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A + E 4ever

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3.59  ·  Rating Details  ·  522 Ratings  ·  124 Reviews
Asher Machnik is a teenage boy cursed with a beautiful androgynous face. Guys punch him, girls slag him and by high school he's developed an intense fear of being touched. Art remains his only escape from an otherwise emotionally empty life. Eulalie Mason is the lonely, tough-talking dyke from school who befriends Ash. The only one to see and accept all of his sides as a l ...more
Paperback, 214 pages
Published September 15th 2011 by Lethe Press
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Booklist for Trans Teens
20th out of 212 books — 292 voters
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weird warm and hearty
2nd out of 16 books — 16 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,152)
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Jun Nozaki
Nov 23, 2011 Jun Nozaki rated it it was amazing
Reading this book was like going back in time, to the time of awkward teenagers in high school, to the time of confusion, to the time of the cruelty of puberty.

While I have to admit that my own slice of that period was quite easy, I had plenty of friends who (combined) had the same sort of issues that A and E experienced. Even though our high school was very tolerant, some lesser fortunate kids were going through a subtler version of the conflicts in this book.

Following the friendship of A and
...more
Raina
Dec 07, 2012 Raina rated it it was amazing
When I think about this book, I don't particularly think about the plot. Yes, it's about two gender-nonconforming teens who become friends and consider more. And yes, I was completely enraptured reading it - sucked into asher and eulalie's lives. Pretty sure I read this in one sitting.
And the story is important and the story is heartbreaking, and the story is adorable, and the story makes my chest swell just thinking about it.

But ultimately it's the aesthetic of this that I'm really obsessed wi
...more
David Stewart
Mar 05, 2012 David Stewart rated it it was ok
I'm not sure entirely what to think about this book. It does some things very well, does some things very poorly, and touches on topics that are frustratingly absent in 95% of most media.

The story is about a couple of high school kids who are androgynous. The female character, Eu, is sometimes boyish looking but straight. The male character, Ash, is feminine looking and bi-sexual. They meet as outcasts in the same typical high school and form a bond that lasts for...a little bit.

The story focu
...more
James Femmer
Jan 23, 2012 James Femmer rated it it was amazing
I was given a copy of this to review by Lethe Press. I am not a graphic novel reader habitually, so I wasn't sure what to expect. I read it in one sitting, and by the end of it two words came to me that described the experience.

Heartbreaking. Beautiful.

I found the art to have just the right level of impressionism to it – emotions exaggerated almost crudely, perhaps from a bit of manga influence. Asher, the boy, is androgynous and beautiful. Eulalie is tall, tough, with long hair shaved on the si
...more
Kerri
Feb 27, 2015 Kerri rated it really liked it
Very good! Really, just a typical teenage love story, following the classic storyline, but with a refreshing look into the complexities of sexuality and gender identity, where, as noted in the plot summary, everything isn't always black and white (Thank you!) The author does a great job of developing the two main characters (something that isn't always accomplished satisfactorily in graphic novels, in my opinion) so that the path their relationship eventually takes is believable and realistic. A ...more
Arminzerella
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Genna Sarnak
Jan 18, 2012 Genna Sarnak rated it really liked it
Asher Machnik is a shy, effeminate soul who just wants his junior year at his new high school to go by quickly, painlessly. Terrified of being physically touched (with a real phobia that makes him break down and sweat), Asher throws himself whole-heartedly into his sketchbook, escaping within his drawings.

Unfortunately for him, Asher’s soft features and androgynous look make him a target for the school’s ignorant bullies. But it’s this same delicacy, this fragility, that draws Eulalie to Asher
...more
Nathan
Jun 23, 2012 Nathan rated it really liked it
This book was amazing. I really loved it, all the way through. Eu and Ash were unbelievably real, dimensional, and flawed in all the right ways. I felt like they could be anybody. They could have been people who I went to school with, people who come into where I work. They were that real. Eu actually reminded me of one of my best friends from grade 12 in the way she talked an acted.
The book expresses very well the confusion that comes with being a teenager. Both main characters dance around the
...more
Samrat
Mar 17, 2014 Samrat rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Samrat by: Raina
Gawd, this is just such a beautiful book. I really loved the aesthetic of the drawings. The page design is breathtaking, with panels placed as needed for the specific emotion of each scene. This feels intensely autobiographical - not necessarily in plot, but in the unshakeable sense that the author is genuinely a member of the included subcultures. This isn't genderqueer from the outside. It bothered me that Ash's eating disorder seemed to be romanticized, but I think that's my only complaint. T ...more
da Hanci
Mar 01, 2015 da Hanci rated it really liked it
Oooh... This is difficult.

Okay, so I want to start with how great the idea of this book is.

Jewish androgynous possibly slightly queer boy (Asher)? Major yes. Girl with awesome taste in hairstyle who is apparently also queer (Eulalie)? Absolutely.

But I feel like they could have been better executed. *sighs*


Artistry
Though at times the text can be hard to read (damn those spiky letters!) it's generally awesome and mixed in styles. In place of italics, we have adorable swirly cursive.

The languages s
...more
Jan
Jul 20, 2012 Jan rated it it was amazing
Ilike Merey's first graphic novel is an amazing, beautifully drawn and scripted tale of the relationship between a feminine-looking boy and a girl who looks and acts like a tough lesbian. This was HOT! I'd love to give it to all my young cousins, but I'm afraid their parents would freak. Can't wait to see what Ilike Merey does next.
Kate O'Hanlon
Nov 12, 2011 Kate O'Hanlon rated it liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels, lgbt
This is a sweet graphic novel about two androgynous bisexual teenagers figuring out whether they like each other or not that I would like to mail back in time to my 16 year old self who probably would have gone nuts for it. I liked that Eu and Ash were both very nuanced in their identity and not just standard bearers for gender-fuck, which is an easy way to go wrong with these sorts of characters. The ending seemed a little rushed after the leisurely pace of the rest of the story.

I do get sligh
...more
Carlo
Dec 18, 2011 Carlo rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-n, transexual
This graphic novel had an interesting format I have not encountered in many before. The layout and the use of lettering was very unique. For example, the author does not use speech-bubbles at all. What characters are feeling and what they are saying is all derived from context and the placement of text, not bubbles, and there is sometimes very much dialogue, almost like a script or a screenplay. It was in some ways like reading a movie. The art is rough and emotional, part manga and part somethi ...more
Dayna Ingram
I know I entered a giveaway for this, but I couldn't wait to read it. I know some readers find the back-of-the-book description to be misleading - Eu is NOT actually a lesbian. Though neither character really ever labels themselves, the only sexual relationships Eu has are with men, and Ash goes both ways.

Anyway. Just wanted to clarify.

I love the style of this book, how there aren't really panels and everything is kind of messy and raw. It seems both limiting and freeing at the same time, for th
...more
Amy Rae
I don't have a single nice thing to say about this book.

The art is hideous--Merey's grasp of anatomy is near-nonexistent (I defy you to look at these shots and tell me that looks like someone in control of their work), and same with setting and the conventions of comics. I don't demand that you stick to the panels and gutters of traditional newspaper strips and comic books, but in a well-composed comic, there'll be some sense of where your eye is supposed to go, or there'll be a good reason for
...more
Emily
Nov 30, 2011 Emily rated it really liked it
wow, sad lovely strange, what a great book sometimes the illustrations were hard to cope with and the text difficult to read but its beautiful and weird
Brendan Diamond
Some people have a roadmap in their sexual awakening. Others have a more convoluted path, filled with mistakes, accidents, and things left unsaid. That's this story—a love story, sure, but one that far better understands the contemporary idea of being "queer" (as opposed to the hetero/homo/bi trichotomy of yesteryear). Both Ash and Eulalie are queer in their own ways, melding androgyny and sexuality into a strong, beautiful friendship. But at their hearts, they're not straight or gay, boy or gir ...more
Tracey
Sep 24, 2015 Tracey rated it it was amazing
I heard about this book through the Stonewall awards and it was pretty high on my to-read list. Unfortunately the library didn't have the book. So I put myself on the waiting list. Three long months later, I got it. And this graphic novel was definitely worth the wait.

ASH is a boy who looks like a girl who likes boys and girls. Got all that, because it took me a while to get it. Anyway, he comes to this new school where everyone is trying to kick his ass. That is until EU steps in and saves the
...more
Alex
Overall
A touching story of high school romance that involves character growth, thoughts on sexuality and gender, and bullying. Aside from an overall enjoyment, the story had some gaping holes that left me blinking in surprise, wondering where the rest was.

Strengths
The art style won't be to everyone's liking, but the rawness felt appropriate for the characters who are edgy and fringe. The construction of the pages was sometimes hard to follow, but never confusing enough to disrupt the story or co
...more
Moni
a+e 4ever, is a story about Ash, a gay boy with an androgynous face who just wants to be left alone, and Eu a tough talking goth dressing girl who gets called a dyke. It details their complicated friendship as Ash explores his sexuality while Eu suffers from an unrequited love for Ash. I personally relate to this novel in many ways; I associate my humor with Eu and I experienced unrequited love for a best friend and the music and art they discuss adds depth to the story. The two characters are i ...more
Brittany
Feb 24, 2013 Brittany rated it really liked it
Asher and Eulalie are cast out by their peers because they look different. Asher is a bit androgynous and Eulalie is tall and looks a bit like a dyke. Luckily they meet each other. They hang our listening to music and drawing. Life is good until Eu realizes that she wants more than friendship with Asher. At first she doesn't mind, because he is into guys. When he mentions that he might be into girls too though, Eu is devastated. She just wants him to feel comfortable with her and care about her ...more
Misha
Jan 06, 2012 Misha rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Elizabeth
Just beautiful. The artwork is stunning. Gorgeous melting lines, curves and shades. And I loved the story. Really accurately conveys how blurred everything is in teenage (and beyond) relationships. The blurred boundaries of gender, sexuality, and friendship are done with such deftness and truth. Nothing is just any one thing. No experience purely good, purely bad. The world of Ash and Eulalie is one where the obvious truth is all is confusion, from the adult world to the high school microcosm, f ...more
Gary Cohen
May 15, 2013 Gary Cohen rated it liked it
This book was recommended to me by a friend who I now realize is a filthy, filthy pervert. And worse I realize that she must think I'm a filthy, filthy pervert if she would think I would like this book

I'm kidding. But I know she reads my reviews. Hi Marie!

This is a very powerful book. It's a graphic novel. The art is very stark, very raw. There are definitely some Manga influences to it but you also feel like you might be looking at someone's sketchbook, or a graphic diary.

This book is about fr
...more
Tessa
Jan 05, 2012 Tessa rated it liked it
Shelves: comics, yyay
I liked this both for its authenticity and art.

The art was sketchy but on the refined side of sketchy, with moments of pure drawing, befitting the subject matter (teenagers who love to draw and their complicated friendship). There was much dialogue, inner and outer, but the book was well-designed so I always knew who was talking and if they were saying it out loud.

Eulalie in particular reminded me of a certain teen I once supervised, in her awkward use of slang to seem more cultured/different an
...more
Christina G
3.5 stars. Maybe the queerest book I've read for teens, in that so many lines and genders and sexualities are blurred and confused (not in a bad way, but a realistic way). It's partially a story of unrequited love between a tough, androgynous girl and a genderqueer bi(?) boy, and partially a story about the latter's coming of age.

This is not a book for the prudish. This book is a raw nerve, with dark scenes on drug use, rape, bullying, and loneliness. Maybe for the alienated, dark, artsy types.

I
...more
Ivy
Sep 07, 2015 Ivy rated it it was amazing
I picked this graphic novel up randomly at the library and started reading, two hours later I finished it amazed. This is a true coming of age story, about a boy and girl growing up and finding themselves. The story focuses on them finding their sexuality but you also see them find their style and developing their personalities. The story development was great and I loved the characters. I felt like the author did a great job showing what emotions and feelings are like as a teenager which I beli ...more
Pink
May 03, 2015 Pink rated it really liked it
Although the art may not be of the highest quality and sometimes it can be somewhat difficult to understand who is saying what and if they are saying it out loud or just thinking it, the style really fit the story.

I love this story because of the way it portrays sexual orientation. Both of the main characters are still young and trying to figure out who they are. I love that there's never really some label they try to identify as. It's a road that I think most YA books do not take, even if they
...more
Sean
Aug 14, 2012 Sean rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novel
I really enjoyed this book on so many levels. The art is simply fantastic with a strange mix of manga influences. The story is interesting and confusing and yet incredibly beautiful. This is not a happy tale filled with sunshine and unicorn farts. It is depressing, joyful, disturbing, and unrelenting. As a book that deals heavily with confused sexuality and what defines "love", it is a gem and a valid look into a subculture that most people try to ignore or ridicule. This book perfectly illustra ...more
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Will read/write for bacon.

But seriously, I love talking about books, reading, writing and the creative process.

Pictures!/Ruminations!:
http://ryszberry.wordpress.com/

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