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3.5 of 5 stars 3.50  ·  rating details  ·  171 ratings  ·  53 reviews
Sometimes the most dramatic scenes in a high school theater club are the ones that happen between the actors and crew off stage.

Seventeen-year-old Tyler Darcy's dream of being a writer is starting to feel very real now that he's sold his first short story to a literary journal. He should be celebrating its publication with his two best friends who've always had his back, b...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published April 23rd 2013 by Random House Children's Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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S.F. Robertson
This is my first Tom Leveen novel and I am head over heels for his writing. You can bet after reading this slim but superb novel about a young man chasing a vision of what he wants instead of appreciating what he has that I will be adding Leveen's other novels to my shelf.

Manicpixiedreamgirl opens on Tyler Darcy and his friends Rob and Justin celebrating after Tyler sells a short story to a literary magazine. After three years of pining for Rebecca, Tyler's forced to decide whether it's time to...more
Once again, in Manicpixiedreamgirl, Leveen writes realistic, edgy teen characters that tug at your heartstrings and make you root for their ultimate triumph.

As Manicpixiedreamgirl opens, Tyler and his two friends are celebrating the publication of one of Tyler's stories in a magazine. The three of them are all in various stages of intoxication in a city park. Tyler is receiving texts and phone calls from two different girls--Syd, who has been his steady girlfriend for two years, and Becky, who h...more
Jen Ryland
For the complete review, including a brief history of the Manic Pixie Dream girl,
Check out my blog, YA Romantics

Manicpixiedream girl is about a boy who drifts into a relationship he's not that into because he can't bring himself to reach out to the girl he's really interested in.

The book switches between the past and the present, between the aftermath of Tyler's girlfriend discovering that he's obsessed with another girl and his prior encounters with Becky, the girl in question. The flashback s...more
Many thanks to Random House for offering this ARC on This is the second Tom Leeven ARC I have received and read. I loved Zero and Loved Manicpixiedreamgirl even more. Leveen's first book, Party, gave me some mixed feelings, but Zero was great and Manicpixiedreamgirl just proves that Leveen is getting better and better. His characters are real and avoid stereotypes. They are not "all bad" or "all good," they are characters who live in grey, who make good decisions and poor ones...ju...more
"manicpixiedreamgirl"? i am in. i am so in. i am really, super in. requesting from the library now, omg.

after reading: okay, so this was pretty standard ya fare. no exceptional writing style or imagery or anything like that. leveen does a good job of making tyler both a real human and an obvious caricature of all those teenage boys who build women into goddesses and innocent flowers at the same time. spoiler alert: becky is a human being!

pretty nice slap in the face to the manic pixie dream girl...more
Liz Fichera
This story was so wonderfully perfect. Perfect teen hilarious boy voice, superb writing. Excuse me now while I go out and buy all of Tom Leveen's other books.
Finally, a YA novel that centers around romance that feels... well, right. The obsession with manic pixie dreamgirls is a real thing in today's society, and Tom Leveen hits on the right notes of idol worship and settling that young people have to navigate in early crushes.

Yeah, I liked this book. Not a WHOLE lot happens, but I really empathized with the main character. And I really liked the girl he was "settling" for. I think it's intentionally supposed to remind you of Say Anything> or 500...more
I absolutely loved reading this. When they said that this was Say Anything meets 500 Days of Summer, they weren't kidding. And they kept raving about his book's "voice"...boy,were they right again. I just love coming-of-age, love stories told from the point of view of the guy. Plus, I'm such a sucker for stories that happen in the course of one night or one Nick & Nora's Infinite Playlist or Say Anything. And troubled dream girls! Seriously, this book has all of the elements that...more
Celine Garcia
I have spoken about Tom Leveen often with writers and readers, telling them how uniquely realistic he is as an author for young adults. He gets to the right level of real when it comes to the crazy emotions of young love and the levels of intimacy between two people with all the awkwardness that a reader can bare. After I read Zero I became an instant fan of Leveen’s. His characters are people that are actually out in the world who have always had a voice but maybe just don’t get heard as often...more
I've read quite a few of the other reviews of this book, and it seems that NO ONE has the same concerns that I have.
This was a good book. I thought the characters seemed pretty realistic for the most part and I liked the style of storytelling. But what bothered me was that no one, excluding the main character, Tyler, seemed to give a damn about the girl in question, Becky.
Tyler has a thing for Becky. He just sees her and starts building fantasies about her. However, she has no friends. Her paren...more
Words cannot even begin to explain how much I loved this book. I don't know what it is, but I just could not put this one down. I finished this in one day. During finals week. That's gotta tell you something!

The moment Tyler Darcy sees Rebecca Webb, he's a goner. For the next three years, Tyler continues to obsess over Becky and everything about her, even though he starts dating Sydney at the end of freshman year. There's just something about Becky he can't get out of his head. Tyler's a writer,...more
Jessica Day
Manicpixiedreamgirl actually was surprisingly good, something I wouldn't have guessed by only looking at the cover. For one thing, I loved reading about a writer. Tyler is realistic and familiar, at least to me. He is really moved by his muse, Becky Webb, and I liked watching him slowly come to realize that, no matter how you paint your muse, they are still human. Becky Webb is an especially realistic and complex character. While she is predictable, there are many layers to her character that be...more
Sometimes the most dramatic scenes in a high school theater club are the ones that happen between the actors and crew off stage.

With this sentence, I was hooked and knew that I must read this book. Tom Leveen made me a believer in his talent with his novel Zero and amazed me even more with manicpixiedreamgirl. His writing is dynamic and honest and REAL. He draws the reader in with his character development and overwhelms us with his storytelling. Pure genius. Leveen just gets it right.

The story...more
I like Manicpixiedreamgirl.

I was introduced to Tom Leveen's work in Zero. I liked how realistic his depiction of teen life is, and in the same manner, that's how it went for me in Manicpixiedreamgirl.

After years of watching Becky from afar, Tyler hasn't shake off the feelings he have for that girl. Sure, they became friends, but is that all he can be? Tyler wonders if he can pursue the girl at last, while he was still experiencing the high of having his work published.

First off, Tyler's treatmen...more
Audrey Wilkerson
Rating: 3.5

The Low Down: Ever since he first saw her freshman year, Tyler Darcy has been drawn to Becky Webb like a moth to the flame. She has no idea of his almost obsession with her; after all, in the beginning, he can’t bring himself to speak to her, much less spill his secrets. All his friends know of his infatuation, hell, even his girlfriend knows. Syd is beautiful, smart and so cool. Why she puts up with his fixation is beyond him. But every chance he gets, he looks for Becky. Thinks abou...more
Cheyenne Teska
It starts with a girl. She's not just any girl, but the girl of Tyler's dreams. From the first moment he locks eyes with her, he knows that he's done for. Though we try to move on, sometimes there's just the smallest bit of hope that keeps us from letting go. Tom Leveen's Manicpixiedreamgirl shows what it's like to be stuck on the thought of someone you may never be able to have.

The story is set over the span of one night, with various flashbacks to help the reader get a better feel of each char...more
This book is a rather short and quick read that packs a great story into its pages. The characters are complex and seem like real people. The story is engaging and keeps the reader invested the entire time, making this a great book.


Tyler is a fantastic male POV protagonist. He is pretty much obsessed with Rebecca Webb, and this obsession sometimes hurts his relationships. For example, he isn't really fair to his girlfriend, Sydney. She's a good person, yet he has such a hu...more
C.J. Listro (Sarcasm & Lemons)
Read more:

You know the Manic Pixie Dream Girl. She's Natalie Portman in Garden State. She's Summer in 500 Days of Summer, for a while. Ramona in Scott Pilgrim. Eccentric, adorably quirky savior of the brooding bad boy. She's the girl (or guy) you watched from afar in high school, invented daydreams about, held on a pedestal. Leveen plays with this most common of experiences in an authentic and clever way, creating the brooding boy Tyler and the dream girl...more
I am by far not the target audience for this book, which first is a young adult novel and second I suspect may be aimed at boys as the protagonist is a teenage boy. The story centers around a teenage boy named Tyler who has been pining after his dream girl Becky for three years while also dating another girl named Sidney. One fateful night brings everything to a head with the story moving back and forth between what is happening that night and all the moments over the past three years leading up...more
Liza Wiemer
Mar 27, 2013 Liza Wiemer added it
Shelves: arc
Quick read, romantic, and at times heartbreaking.

This was my first Tom Leveen novel, and I'm totally hooked. I'll definitely be adding his other books to my to-read list. I loved how Leveen alternated between narrating the story in the present and then in the past, allowing Manicpixiedreamgirl to unfold and keep me interested. Tyler Darcy narrates his obsession for a girl named Becky, which started on his first day of his freshman year of high school. He watches Becky from a distance and asks h...more
Okay so I do not like the description Goodreads has. On my arc copy instead o a normal summary it has a little blurb taken from page 9 of the novel, and that is what made me pick up this book.

Now to review,
I am in love with Tyler and his story. While this may just be another YA fiction book with mostly normal YA novel problems, I swear Tyler just makes me forget all of that. The voice the author has given to him makes him believable, I actually think I may know someone kind of like him. He kept...more
Dec 04, 2013 TheSaint rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
You know how most YA realistic fiction zeroes in on a teen guy falling in love or (or at least lust) with a completely inappropriate, unapproachable girl? Yeah, me neither. But manicpixiedreamgirl is just such a breath of fresh air in the romance genre.

Tyler should have most of his life under control. He's smart, he has some good buddies, he has a smart girlfriend. Trouble is, he's smitten by Becky, a girl he can barely make eye contact with. And his girlfriend knows about it -- she's incredibly...more
Apr 27, 2013 Amanda rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
Tom Leveen writes with a voice that is so authentically teenager, that I sometimes forget that a dude in his late-30s is writing the book.

Also, I love his creative swearing. Example:

"'Wow', Robby said calmly, folding his hands on the table, quite possibly in an effort to keep from tearing my jaw off. 'That was impressive, Ty. Now do you mind, please, explaining to us what the almighty holy fuck just happened here?'"

I really liked the way the book was put together. It takes place over the course...more
Alma  Ramos-McDermott
Through present time and flashbacks, readers are introduced to sixteen-year-old Tyler Darcy. From the moment he first laid eyes on Rebecca in 9th grade, Tyler was in love. He kept all his feelings to himself, writing about her and fantasizing about the ways he’d “wow” her with his brilliance.

Are you following my blog yet? No? Seriously?? After all these fabulous posts, you STILL haven't? Well, if you wanna read the rest of my post then ya gotta click on this link. It'd be a lot easier if you ju...more
Haven't read any reviews for this book so I'm not sure if a lot of people have read it but I really enjoyed it. This book is from a male pov. Tyler has been lusting from afar a girl named Rebecca. Everyone around him knows of his fascination for her even his girlfriend Sydney. Tyler writes a story that gets published in a magazine about his love for Becky. This book alternates between time lines from in the past when he first notices Becky at school and the present timeline where he is celebrati...more
Tyler has a lot to celebrate: two of his short stories have just been published by reputable literary magazines...and he's only 17. Plus, he's got an awesome girlfriend, Sydney. And he's in love!

But the girl he's in love with?'s not Sydney.

Tyler may be dating Sydney, but he can't stop thinking about Becky Webb: a tattooed, sexy drama club star with a reputation that inspires gossip. Becky is Tyler's friend--but deep down, he's always wanted more.

Over the course of one very intense n...more
I had high hopes for this book, in part because of funny videos I had seen online about Manic Pixie (Dream) Girls. Overall, I thought this book was interesting-especially the way it was written. Leveen is able to tell an expansive story effectively by using flashbacks and still manages to keep up the tension. Ultimately though, I wanted more. I wanted the manicpixiedreamgirl to be more Manic Pixie, if that makes sense.

My real disappointment was with Becky, the dream girl. I get that she had issu...more
Lana Long
manicpixiedreamgirl by Tom Leveen is a quick read abut a high school boy and his relationship with two girls. I didn't really like Tyler very much but I'm probably being unfair. The vivid depiction of his flaws as he sees them makes me sympathetic, but I kept thinking that if I wasn't in his head, I'd probably think he was sort of a jerk. A heavily used word in the text. Still it's easy to forgive him for being a jerk as he interacts with his friends and family. He's a nice guy stuck in place fr...more
Michelle Sallay
Tom Leveen gives his characters such great voices. I loved Tyler, really loved him. The reason I'm not giving this a higher rating is because of the jump from present to past. Although it was executed pretty much flawlessly, I still struggled to keep up with the flow of it. I would be getting into one story and then we would flash to the other story and I felt like my mind and heart were derailed.

This had almost a feel of a short story for some reason, maybe it was the ending. Great mail POV bo...more
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Tom Leveen has 22 years of theatre experience as an actor and director. He was the Artistic Director and a co-founder of two companies: Chyro Arts Venue, an all-ages nonprofit visual and performing venue; and Is What It Is Theatre, a community theatre that operated for 13 seasons. Tom lives with is wife and son in the Phoenix area. PARTY was his first novel, followed by ZERO (a 2013 YALSA Best Boo...more
More about Tom Leveen...
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“However, since I lacked the testicular fortitude to make contact with Becky, I went ahead and called Sydney the next afternoon and met her at the mall that night.” 1 likes
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