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Freakboy

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  1,055 ratings  ·  200 reviews
From the outside, Brendan Chase seems to have it pretty easy. He’s a star wrestler, a video game aficionado, and a loving boyfriend to his seemingly perfect match, Vanessa. But on the inside, Brendan struggles to understand why his body feels so wrong—why he sometimes fantasizes having long hair, soft skin, and gentle curves. Is there even a name for guys like him? Guys wh ...more
Hardcover, 448 pages
Published October 22nd 2013 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Giselle
As my first verse novel, Freakboy really surprised me. Not being a fan of poetry I was expecting verse novels to give me the worst kind of reading experience, but it was actually really moving and easier to get into the flow of it than I would have thought. The subject matter was also original and gave me a new insight in the subject of LGBT. I've read plenty of books about gay teens with confused sexualities and such, but this was my first time into the mind of a confused transsexual.

Freakboy i
...more
Ellen Hopkins
Few writers dare to tackle such a difficult--and important--topic. Kudos, Kristin, for taking a major chance!
Kaje Harper
I stayed up until 2 AM reading this. It hit home, an arrow to the heart.

You may read "prose-poem" in the book description but don't be put off by that. This is a fairly straight-forward narrative, although it's written with less words per line, in a poem-like structure without a lot of description. It still reads smoothly and easily. It still moves, inexorably, through the story of a boy who has always liked girls, and girl things, and who comes to the realization that the way he likes them isn'
...more
Lottie Eve
Freakboy is the first Young Adult novel that I have read that properly addresses transexuality. And, while I am not going to pretend to know a lot about the subject, I do think that Clark did a great job at writing and portraying transexuality. Her characters are well-written and she obviously put a lot of thought into her story. This book also happens to be the first verse novel I have read in a long, long time, and even though verse novels aren’t really my thing, I have to admit that I thought ...more
Wendy Darling
Glad the book was written, but this just confirms all over again that novels written in verse just aren't for me. I just want more from books, and it's hard to explore with a satisfying degree of depth and complexity and emotion within this kind of framework.

I support LGBTQ issues so wholeheartedly, but as with TWO BOYS KISSING, the style of storytelling just wasn't my cup of tea.
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
I read Freakboy as I traversed the United States. The row in front of me on the airplane, there was a baby, so I put my headphones in and blasted music into my ears. This actually really helped me focus in on the book, and remove the rest of the world. Usually, when I read, I’m distracted: by my cat, by the internet, by little sounds outside. The whole time I was reading Freakboy on the flight, I was basically trying not to be that weird girl crying on the airplane. Kristin Elizabeth Clark’s Fre ...more
Joanna Marple
Synopsis:

This young adult novel is told in verse from three teen points of view, whose lives interweave as the plot develops. Brendon, the main protagonist, and for whom the book is titled is a white middle class teen from a divorced background, with atheistic beliefs, great commitment to his little sister, love of gaming, an ambivalence towards his wrestling team, a good relationship with his girlfriend with whom he enjoys sex (or at least being close to her body) but whose soft skin, long hair
...more
Medeia Sharif
Brendan has a girlfriend, but his attraction to girls is confusing. When he looks at a beautiful woman, it’s not because he wants to be with her. He imagines what it’s like to be her. His girlfriend, Vanessa, thinks he has a wandering eye, but that’s not the case.

Angel works at a safe house for GLBT youth. He sees Brendan one day and reaches out to him. In a fit of confusion, Brendan throws a rock at the house’s window and breaks it. People who work there think it’s a hate crime and vandalism,
...more
Liviania

Kristin Elizabeth Clark certainly has ambition. Her debut novel, FREAKBOY, tackles the gender spectrum - in verse. I love novels in verse and I love novels that address LGBTQ issues. I had very high hopes for FREAKBOY, which can be a bad thing for a book. But I think Clark met her ambitions.

Brendan Chase is a fairly normal guy. He's on the wrestling team (and isn't that good) and has a girlfriend (who is a better wrestler than him). He loves Vanessa, knows that he likes girls in that way. At the
...more
Kelly
2.5ish.

Brendan is a wrestler. He's got a great girlfriend named Vanessa. But that's where all of the "good" in his life really ends. Brendan's family life isn't stable, and Brendan doesn't know if he's entirely sure of who he is. He's questioning his sexuality -- even though Vanessa is great, he's wondering: am I really in the right body?

Vanessa loves Brendan, but she's about to find out that, while he loves her, he doesn't know if she's the right match because he doesn't know what it is he wan
...more
Amy Rae
I'm hesitant to decry this book overly, because it might well provide comfort to people with questions like the main character's. But the simple fact of the matter is that I wasn't all that impressed.

Of the three novels in verse I've read this year, this one has the worst poetry by far. It's artless and ineffective; the imagery is nothing to write home about, and the metaphors and similes are simplistic. Just because the characters are high-school aged doesn't mean it should read like high schoo
...more
Katelynn


I love reading acknowledgments. They offer a rare glimpse into the view of the author. The author of FreakBoy shared a very special acknowledgment to fellow author, Ellen Hopkins- ..."who, when I went to her, wringing my hands and whining to her that she needed to write something for gender-variant kids, listened patiently, then said, 'No, this is a story you need to write yourself.' " I'm so glad you did. My hat's off to you, Kristin Elizabeth Clark, because this is a PHENOMENAL story!

This sum
...more
Pam Vlieg
I sat down at noon today to start reading this. I didn't put it on my Goodreads because I wanted to try a chapter before I committed to reading it in front of all of my social networks. I have this thing about novels in verse not really working for me. Maybe they do and I just don't read them often enough.

Freakboy is amazing. The subject matter is tough and it is dark but there are slivers of hope lined up inside for you while reading. I cried, I hoped, I wanted more than anything for Brendan to
...more
Caitlin
Heartbreaking, hopeful, and beautifully written in verse. This is a wonderful book coming in fall 2013.
Laura Graves
I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

So, I didn’t even read the synopsis to Freakboy. I had a pretty good idea, just from the title, what it was going to be about. What I didn’t know was that it would be in verse. I’m not really into poetry, in general, but this was just a great book.

Freakboy follows Brendan as he struggles to find who he is and where he fits in. His girlfriend, Vane
...more
the golden witch.
Yay, another book in YA addressing the trans population! This makes me happy. My co-blogger and I partially addressed this book in our LGBTQ Month of July post on the blog, but it's time for a proper review. "Freakboy" follows the same free verse approach that Ellen Hopkins does, and for the most part, it works well with each character's POV, getting across the main points of the book, and pumping up the tension a fair amount. Adding to my best of 2013 list, "Freakboy" is a book you simply can't ...more
Rawson Gordon II
This free-verse poem novel contrasts the journeys of two transgender anatomical males - Brendan, the white, prep-school atheist child of divorce, and Angel, the black, Christ-loving, formerly trick-turning street kid. Of the two, who would you expect to be relatively content in her situation, and who would be suicidal? Ironically, or perhaps not so ironically, it is Brendan who is tortured, seeking escape from the pressure to conform by mothering his tiny sister, withholding purchased gift linge ...more
Paige
Mar 21, 2014 Paige added it
Freak Boy is a very interesting and complex book. It makes you question a lot of things, but it also takes you into someone else's shoes to see how they carry on with their everyday lives. I'm not for the whole gay transsexual thing going on here in this book, but I am open to a new books. When I first starting reading it, I was a little confused about a lot of things, but it isn't like I could just put the book down and never read it once I've started it. No, once I've started a book I have to ...more
Alexandra Gonzalez
I just finished reading the book Freakboy, by Kristin Elizabeth Clark and it was a superb book. This book is a young adult realistic fiction book. This book really caught my attention because of how it was written. I have never read a book in pom form. I really enjoyed reading the book because it gave me a new perspective on the view of other people.
At first, I thought that the book was in a very odd style and that Freakboy was going to be like a boy that looked odd like frankenstein or somethi
...more
Claudia
Wow -- "We read to know we're not alone." Everyone deserves to recognize himself or herself within the pages of books. Here is a much-needed book for kids with confused sexual identities...and, frankly, that could be any of us.

Identity, family, friendship, relationships. Mental health issues...Clark fearlessly dives into these issues and more. She gives voice to kids who are desperately searching for who they are and how they belong.

Brendan seems to be dealing with his parents' break up. Zoloft
...more
Ilene
If you aren't open minded I'd say to probably skip the book...

Everyone faces some sort of prejudice, the degree may differ significantly though. I don't personally know anyone that is transgender or transexual. So days I may think being a guy would be easier but I never wanted to not be female BUT I am more then okay with anyone who wants to be the other. I am not them so it is not my right to judge. I live by the belief whatever makes you happy (as long as it doesn't hurt others) if fine.

That a
...more
Broken Fangirl
If

you liked Ellen Hopkins YA novels

or the novel Luna

then FREAKBOY is for you.

Told in three point of views Brendan, Vanessa, and a girl named Angel who happens to be transgender.

I just found out that this book existed

they say never judge a book by the cover

I did

and I don't regret it at all.

Though its only 427 pages

it is a fast paced novel

that grips till the end.

I thought the ending seemed rushed like the author didn't want to go to five hundred pages (I wish she did).

Vanessa character seem
...more
Cayce
Let me start off with a confession: I don't like poems. Sure there are the odd exceptions, but on the whole I'm just not a poem person. So, while the blurb made Freakboy sound absolutely amazing, the verse novel form made me hesitant. Because, you see, I have never read a novel in verse before; what if I hate it? The beautifully fractured cover, however, kept taunting me on Netgalley, and in the end my curiosity won out. And... I loved it. In fact, I loved Freakboy so freakin' much, I'm going to ...more
Amy Fournier
*Actual rating 4.5 stars

This book took me totally by surprise. I have listened to verse novels before, but have never actually read one myself. I am not opposed to poetry, I just don't typically read it. This book though written in poems never felt that way. It flowed really well, and I was able to get caught up in the story rather quickly. The other bonus of this being a verse novel was that even though it's quite a large book, it a very fast read. Also, the topic is not one that I have read be
...more
Paola
This novel is such a refreshing read. I've read some amazing books this year but I've been having the nagging feeling that most YA novels are starting to blend together and the majority of new releases have not been catching my attention. Then Freakboy came along. The entire novel is written in verse (which is a first for me) and it tackles heavy issues and raises a lot of questions. This novel addresses sexuality and how it is not black and white. It shatters the notion that you are either gay ...more
Sally Kruger
FREAKBOY by Kristin Elizabeth Clark follows three characters struggling with transgender issues. Written in verse, it is a fast read that will speak to teens questioning their sexuality. With a release date of 10/13, FREAKBOY handles a sensitive subject with care and compassion.

Brendan studies hard and has been a dedicated member of the wrestling team. He thinks it is pretty cool that his girl friend is also a member of the team. It gives them plenty of time together, but lately, Brendan has bee
...more
Jenni Arndt
Actual rating is 3.5

Here is another instance where I was kicking myself when a book I had requested arrived because it wasn’t until that moment that I realized the book is told in verse. Also, here is another instance where I was pleasantly surprised to have enjoyed said book much more than I had expected! Once again I am left baffled as to why the novel was told in verse when it read in my head like a regular novel. Sure there were poems in the shape of Christmas trees here and poems within poe
...more
Tasha
Nov 13, 2013 Tasha rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: teen
On the surface, Brendan has it all together. He has a hot girlfriend, he wrestles on the high school team, and he has a great younger sister who adores him. It is under the surface that Brendan struggles, because he feels like a boy inside sometimes and other times like his entire body is wrong and that he is a girl. As Brendan’s life spirals, he meets Angel, a transgendered teen who now lives as a girl. The two bond over video game playing, carefully stepping around the larger issues for a long ...more
Stephanie
This story, told in three voices, successfully delves into difficult, uncharted territory in YA literature: gender identity. In the last decade, there have been powerful, well-written stories about gay and lesbian teenagers, but Freakboy addresses those who are transgender.

Before I read this story, I thought I understood what it meant for someone to identify as transgender, but I overestimated my knowledge and my empathy. Freakboy brought me inside - brought me into the lives, minds, and hearts
...more
Vicki
I was a little disappointed when I saw this book was written in verse, but in retrospect, I think this was probably the perfect way to capture the thoughts and emotions of the characters.

The book follows the thoughts of three characters--Brendan, a high school student who loves his girlfriend and likes having sex with her, but sometimes wonders what it would be like to be a girl. Vanessa--Brendan's girlfriend whose entire life is tied up in Brendan to the point that her two best friends have dit
...more
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2014 Hub Reading ...: Freakboy 8 36 May 07, 2014 06:07AM  
YA LGBT Books: April 2014 BotM - Freakboy *spoilers* 8 57 May 07, 2014 01:35AM  
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6894995
Kristin Elizabeth Clark lives and writes in the Santa Cruz Mountains. She hikes with her dog and reads to her cats… but she’s not one of THOSE people. Really.

Her young adult debut, Freakboy, will be published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) on October 22nd, 2013.
More about Kristin Elizabeth Clark...

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“Long after you go down
and the vessel rusts apart

your bones sunken
buried in the ocean floor

I wonder if you miss people?”
2 likes
“Because Honestly
is it trashy
to want something so bad
you go for it
even if it might kill you?

My opinion?

It's judging that's trashy.

Bad enough the world looks at us
under a (distorted) microscope.

Like the good Lord says,
we don't need to
judge each other.”
1 likes
More quotes…