Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Grow Up” as Want to Read:
Grow Up
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Grow Up

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  1,403 ratings  ·  161 reviews
In this bawdy, raucous, and unabashedly frank novel, youth is certainly not wasted on the young

Hailed as "one of the most hilarious and well-observed accounts of teenage debauchery you are ever likely to read" by the trendsetting British lifestyle magazine Dazed & Confused, Ben Brooks's Grow Up is a shocking, stylish, and very modern coming-of-age story.

As Jasper J. Wo...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published April 24th 2012 by Penguin Books (first published January 1st 2011)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Grow Up, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Grow Up

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
20 year old Ben Brooks wrote this book about being a teenager in England when he was 17.

His mastery of the novel is stunning. The writing is fucking amazing.

His vivid depiction of sex, violence, confusion & drugs rules!

Jasper is very funny and insightful and totally mixed up all at once, like a real person. Half genius half idiot.

Grow Up is entertaining and moving. Disturbing and hilarious. Like being a kid. This English perspective on teenager-dom is existential and fraught and tangled a...more
Jackson Nieuwland
Conversations I had about this book:

me: im reading grow up
seems pretty good

spencer: i read like the first several pages
seemed engaging
been meaning to order it
seems like i'd have an unfair bias
like "who the fuck... does this guy think he is ..." re him being my age

me: yeah. seems really bleak that he's younger than me and already has multiple books

spencer: ya
and is also like
seemingly healthy

me: yeah

spencer: god damn it
ben brooks wtf

me: its because of his alliterati...more
Jul 14, 2011 A.M. rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to A.M. by: Debbo
Shelves: fiction, contemporary
This book is weird. Not good weird or bad weird, just weird.

It's a snapshot of today's hedonistic youth: taking drugs, attending parties, getting laid, acting as if they'll be young forever with barely a thought given to the future. (If you've watched the TV series Skins, you'll have a fairly good idea what this book is like.)

It's also a meta-literary exploration of self. While I'm not a fan of metafiction, Ben Brooks somehow manages to pull it off; his writing is simple, his imagery effortless...more
Three things I enjoy most in a novel:
Shock Value.
Well Developed Characters.
An Extensive Vocabulary.

This story featured all of these, and seemed to me like a Palahniuk - ish coming of age novel. The fact that it was written by a boy who was still growing into himself was interesting as well as impressive.
In the beginning of the novel, Jasper talks about how his mother likes him to write down a schedule every morning. Throughout the novel, it's written like you're going through his schedule with...more
Lydia Presley
I recently went to a friend with the following statement about this book: "Good golly I read a coming-of-age book last night that was so foul languaged and filled with sex, drugs and alcohol that I don't know how to talk about it on the blog.. because I actually enjoyed it."

Then I realized, that's exactly what I wanted to say about Grow Up by Ben Brooks. Frankly, I needed to grow up and face the fact that, in spite of its numerous moral deficiencies, this book tackles tough, hard issues teenage...more
natalie chin
i liked reading this book
one of my friends said seems like this is 'just about sex and drugs'

ben said 'this is 99% descriptive of my life'
feel like there is more to him than that [via irl conversation]
which makes me feel that he is conscious of the way he chooses to portray jasper
i think that is important to remember and is why it shouldn't be dismissed at first read

interesting again to think of the relation between text produced and person who produced text

laughed re post-its that his mom made...more
Este tipo, nacido en 1992, es la promesa de un genio genuino y gamberro. El hijo necesario entre Palahniuk y Amis. Una voz generacional nueva, signifique eso lo que sea que signifique. Lo absurdo y la anomia vistos con un humor muy negro. Este libro es una orden de alejamiento entre aquello que no queremos ser y todo aquello que nos han prometido.

Ojalá crezca sin torcerse. Ojalá tenga este chico más cosas que contar. Ojalá se salve de sí mismo. O que se tuerza. O que cuente lo mismo. O que no s...more
Aidan Watson-Morris
Sep 14, 2014 Aidan Watson-Morris added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who think they don't like to read anymore, tao lin fans
Shelves: 2013
brooks' apparent talent & intelligence slightly elevate this over the aesthetic he's going for (which is a good thing)--but only slightly.
Edit: Knihu jsem četla podruhé a tentokrát bych ji ohodnotila ještě daleko lépe. Asi na 4,5 hvězdičky. Je to provokativní, vtipné a kontroverzní čtení, které bych rozhodně nedoporučila všem. (13. 6. 2013)

Zásadní otázka, které mě napadá při pohledu na seznam knih Bena Brookse: Je ten kluk grafoman nebo spisovatel?
Po přečtení knihy Dospěj! je mi jasný, že je to skvělý spisovatel se zajímavým úderným stylem. Miluju jeho krátký věty. Jeho postava je mladý kluk, který experimentuje s drogama a sexem...more
I don't know Ben Brooks 'personally.' We are 'facebook friends.' What I know is that 1) Ben Brooks is a very good writer, especially for being so young 2) Ben Brooks has really nice eyebrows 3) Ben Brooks once gave me a $25 gift card to Starbucks via Facebook on my birthday & I a. not sure if it was a mistake, but that was pretty neat. ANYWAY - THE BOOK - GROW UP - READ IT. Read it before 'Lolito' comes out later this year. I am going to love that book most likely because the subject materia...more
His work isn't deep, granted. But the author is 18.

People (readers and critics alike) seem to forget that, they demand Charles Dickens out of him just because he's published. He is a teenager, and although young, his writing is better than a lot of adults ever will be. Give him time.

The book is not sophisticated, it's a very simple story about a teenage boy and drugs and sex and what's going through their head at that age. But I was often pleasantly surprised by choice of wording and sentences...more
“Grow Up is the ultimate twenty-first-century coming-of-age novel.”


Not quite.

It did get entertaining at points, even funny and sometimes even inappropriate/ decidedly slightly non-PC. All that, plus the sex and drugs. Loads of sex . Loads of drugs. Then again this tale is one told by a certain Jasper yet another person likes mucking about. His day is made if his gotten high, had a drink (or two, but better if more) then made head way with one of the opposite sex. Though not necessarily...more
May 01, 2012 buppyspek rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Young men with ADD
**Received this book as part of a GoodReads First Reads giveaway.**

I don't think I really understood this book. I read it quickly, partly while I was on vacation. However, the protagonist, Jasper, is half my age, lives on the other side of the world, and is the opposite gender from me, so I think the problem might have something to do with a difficulty relating to him. Also, I didn't like him. He really came off as a horrible human being.

There was no point, only a vague outline of a plot, and so...more
I think I thought Jasper was the sort of boy I would fancy for a bit before realising he was an idiot. He was an idiot. I don't like the short blunt sentences the book is written in, you know, reminiscent of The Curious Incident or The Perks or Submarine, where it feels like you're supposed to question if they're autistic. I don't know if that comes from Catcher In The Rye cos I haven't read it yet but it feels like it might. It's alright. I just wanted to get stuck into a novel again.
It's quite funny, not that weird and very similar to Catcher in the Rye (except it's funny). Tells you what school would have been like if you were in the in crowd. Makes you a bit jealous if you weren't and you missed the mephadrone buzz but chin up, it's never too late to start using drugs and having casual sex. It is not the deepest book you will ever read but is good fun and a fast read.
I decided to read this book because the picture of a happy skeleton caught my eye and i found it quite appealing.
I liked this book because I could relate to it quite well and it was about teenagers and how they live and all the small details explained in this book made sense, it was a very humorous book.
Jasper in this book is a boy that thinks differently from others, he gets himself into trouble without caring about consequences he does this for the short term joys. What I disliked in this bo...more
Very excellent book. The best way I can describe it is a modern Holden Caulfield thrown into a season of the British TV show Skins. Gratuitous sex and drug use, parents beware!- but that comes with the territory. Extremely witty writing, almost every other sentence being exceptionally funny and well thought out.
Written in a very train of thought, always cause and effect.
Klára M.
Zajímavá knížka, na ne zrovna jednoduché téma. Co je ale nejdůležitější - je vážně vtipná.
Hlavního "hrdinu" Jaspera jsem si brzy oblíbila, i když byl někdy nechutný a občas se choval nemožně, měl charisma a skvělý humor, působil skutečně a myslím, že velkou částí (nebo celou) jeho osobnosti je sám autor.
Kniha mi trochu připomínala "Ten kdo chytá v žitě", ale v modernějíším pojetí.
Velmi mě bavily pasáže sjetého Jaspera, které tvořily jen útržkovité věty - mnohem lépe se mi pak dannná situace pře...more
Mel Bosworth
An energetic look at the 'internet generation.' A fast, funny, sometimes heartfelt tale of a young man's struggles with love, lust, drugs, and his mother's love interest/maybe murderer. Eighteen-year-old Ben Brooks throws a punch and lands it. He's got more guts and focus (and better instincts) than writers ten years his elder.
Conner Panaro
Wow. This book made me laugh so much. The inappropriateness of the protagonist is profound!
Although the book it's self doesn't have one major story lines that grips you, it has so much flare that you don't want to put it down. Ben Brooks for someone at such a young age is a brilliant writer.
Beth O'brien
This book is brilliant! Had me laughing from beginning to end. As an 18 year old myself I connected with the book a lot, however this book obviously isn't for younger readers. I bought the book because I liked the look of the front cover, I know you should never judge a book by its cover, but in this case the great cover reflected a great book. I started reading this book knowing absolutely nothing about it, so I didn't really know what to expect but was pleasantly surprised, and it's easily one...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
H Bowz
I read this book after hearing from a friend that it was really good. Although, immediately I noticed how much cross-over there was between this book and 'Submarine' - Joe Dunthorne.
I did, however, think think that this book was really well written. I particularly enjoyed the descriptive language, it is a very poetic book with some really impressive quotes.
I feel that if the plot line was a little more varied, I probably would have enjoyed it more.
I'm sure I would have enjoyed it much more if...more
Esther Crocombe
Quick and easy to read, funny and surprisingly insightful. Would've loved this when I was 17.
Carolyn DeCarlo
i didn't like this. that makes me unpopular.
This book let me down.
But it's my own fault, I should know better than having very high expectations about a not very discussed book. Or rather of having high expectations about anything whatsoever.
I have to declare I found this book weird, I'm not sure how to rate it because I didn't find it a bad book, but I didn't find it a good book either (so I guess it was ok?).
Brownie Points:
- I loved the cover, I loved the name, I read the sample and I loved the promise the story had.
- I liked the straig...more
YA Reads Book Reviews
Originally featured on, reviewed by Kiona

Jasper spends his days partying with friends, doing drugs, and trying to find evidence incriminating his step-dad as a murderer. He wants to seduce Georgia Treeley, stop one of his best friend’s from hurting herself, and ace his A-levels, as that’s what everyone seems to expect of him.

First thing’s first, this novel is extremely explicit and definitely intended for an older/more mature audience. The author thoroughly details extensive recr...more
This is another book I was recommended. I’m glad I read it, but it’s definitely a strange read. I’m not sure that everyone would enjoy it as it’s quite rude and blunt. It also uses a word that rhymes with blunt that I absolutely HATE. Urgh. Anyway, besides from that, it’s a funny book, not quite laugh out loud funny for me.

If you want to read about a normal teenage English boy, then this is the book for you. Our protagonist Jasper is a seventeen year old boy. He’s typically self-absorbed. He can...more
Originally posted on

Jasper spends his days partying with friends, doing drugs, and trying to find evidence incriminating his step-dad as a murderer. He wants to seduce Georgia Treeley, stop one of his best friend’s from hurting herself, and ace his A-levels, as that’s what everyone seems to expect of him.

First thing’s first, this novel is extremely explicit and definitely intended for an older/more mature audience. The author thoroughly details extensive recreational drug use as...more
I didn't really know quite what to expect from this book upon starting it, but it instantly drew me in. I had seen a lot of negative reviews on this book with comments such as 'it's just about sex and drugs.' I disagree. Granted it is a book that involves a lot of sex, and a lot of substances. However, for me the book had a lot more than that. For one it was extremely funny. Very few books make me laugh out loud, but this was 100% laugh-out-loud-funny in places. I also love how it was written. T...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Happy Ever After: 3 book bind-up
  • The Tiny Wife
  • The Doomspell (Doomspell, #1)
  • Q
  • Person
  • Kimberly's Capital Punishment
  • Happily Ever After
  • An Offer You Can't Refuse
  • Billy and Me
  • Richard Yates
  • One Million Lovely Letters
  • what purpose did i serve in your life
  • Submarine
  • Exchange
  • The Drowning of Arthur Braxton
  • Bed
  • Shadow Web
  • During My Nervous Breakdown I Want to Have a Biographer Present
Lolito An Island of Fifty FENCES The Kasahara School Of Nihilism Revista Eñe: Menores de 25

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“I think charity is like putting a plaster on a man with no skin.” 3 likes
“Because Time has been around for a long time, it often gets bored. In order to briefly relieve its boredom, Time enjoys constructing massively unlikely series of events. If the events are of the romantic kind, they're called Fate, and if they are of the negative kind, we call them Unfortunate Coincidence.” 1 likes
More quotes…