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One Man Guy

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  2,720 ratings  ·  452 reviews
A heartfelt, laugh-out-loud-funny story of romance, family, and self-discovery.

Alek Khederian should have guessed something was wrong when his parents took him to a restaurant. Everyone knows that Armenians never eat out. Between bouts of interrogating the waitress and criticizing the menu, Alek’s parents announce that he’ll be attending summer school in order to bring up
Hardcover, 255 pages
Published May 27th 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
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Ras the Exhorter Ethan's dad (big time NYU professor) was having lunch with Peter Balakian, an Armenian writer, on that day and Ethan was going to bring Alek to meet…moreEthan's dad (big time NYU professor) was having lunch with Peter Balakian, an Armenian writer, on that day and Ethan was going to bring Alek to meet him. They mention Balakian early in the book, when Nik shows off one of his books to impress Nanar's parents.(less)
One Man Guy by Michael BarakivaGrasshopper Jungle by Andrew  SmithFar From You by Tess SharpeI'll Give You the Sun by Jandy NelsonBlue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater
2014 YA Books with LGBT Themes
1st out of 184 books — 375 voters
To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny HanIsla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie PerkinsWe Were Liars by E. LockhartSince You've Been Gone by Morgan MatsonWhat I Thought Was True by Huntley Fitzpatrick
2014 Contemporary YA
17th out of 260 books — 1,504 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Reading this LGBT book surely didn’t feel like an obligation or homework meaning that I relatively did so with interest, but, by the end, I did realize how there were things that I enjoyed and many others that I disliked. Here they are:

What I Liked

1. The LGBT theme, since it is not secret that I think gay romance to be beautiful. It was good to see how it didn't actually bring ''drama'' to the story.

2. Cultural diversity in books! It was interesting to learn about Armenian people, because I sha
Michael Barakiva
Jan 13, 2014 Michael Barakiva rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  (Review from the author)
As the author of this book, I really had to give it five stars, now didn't I? If you are from the suburbs of New Jersey, or love New York City, the music of Rufus Wainwright, falling in love, summer, tennis, or even a single Armenian, I think you will enjoy my book. If you don't fall into any of those categories, I think you will enjoy it any way because it's my first book and like all first times, it's very special.
Actual rating is 4.5 stars, rounded up for the joy this book gave me.

One Man Guy, with an apt acronym of OMG, is amazing; it really, truly is. From the first page to the last, we're thrust into this world of Alek, an LGBT teen finding himself, and it's all just so well written and developed I couldn't help but fall in love. This, my friends, is the LGBT book I've been waiting for but had yet to find.

Of course, in a book like One Man Guy, character and relationship development are key, and here
Kat Kennedy
The only thing you need to know about this book is that it is adorbs. Totally, utterly, sweetly adorable. It will give you all the cute feelings and make you want to hug both protagonists. Anyone who doesn’t agree?

You're wrong!

Anybody who doesn’t finish this book wanting to hug everyone involved has no soul. NO SOUL, I SAY!

Do I still have to review the rest of it? I do? Okay. Fine. The writing was fairly good. There were a few times where the characters were stuck having conversations that clearly became lec
Kaje Harper
This was a fast cute YA read. (I imagine that despite not having a name ending in "-ian" the author is Armenian himself - the little digs at Armenian culture sound like inside jokes. The kind of thing that's funny when coming from someone to whom they also apply.)

This book is about Alek, a 14-year-old boy in an Armenian-American family. He's the second generation born in the US, but Armenian culture and history is still very pervasive in his home life. His mother in particular is determined to k
Alona Free
Absolutely amazing!

This is a beautiful young adult story, and I mean YOUNG adult!
Alek, the MC, is 14! so... if you are not into it, DON'T read it, you will end up not liking it and giving it a few stars less than it deserv, BUT you will also be missing out on an amazing read!
Having said that, Alek is intelligent and very mature for his age that I totally did not feel like I was reading a 14 year old thoughts.

This is Alek's story, and I love the way the author cleverly let us to really know him
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

I haven’t been privy to such a horrible bunch of Armenian-Americans since . . .

Commercial Photography

Commercial Photography

Sorry. I can’t. I crack myself up sometimes!


I had super high hopes for One Man Guy. I love that YA books about coming out/being homosexual are becoming more prevalent. These stories and characters are LONG overdue. After reading the synopsis, I thought for sure I would love this little book much lik
Experiment BL626
I picked this book up because the book description promised humor and romance, and I love humor and romance. Not to mention the book cover was cheery yellow. Sure enough, the book was accurate as advertised.

I had worried how the theme of homophobia would be presented because I didn't want Alek and Ethan to get hurt. I didn't want to read something sad especially when the book promised humor. I still recall the disappointment of How to Repair a Mechanical Heart. Thankfully, the theme of acceptan
Very YA. Very sweet. Somewhat unique. But the ending was too nice and neat and quick.

Thanks for picking this one Mark!
This was a perfectly pleasant 3-star YA mm story that pairs a teen from a culturally immersed Armenian family with a slightly older teen who seems to have minimal parental presence. There were messages about love and acceptance and doing the right thing. There were misunderstandings and conflicted loyalties. For the story backdrop, the angst level was relatively low. The Armenian food described sounded delicious.

I had one small fit of rage when reading caused by something that Ethan did and the
Giselle at Book Nerd Canada
The first scene is something memorable. I have never met anyone so specific to order things off the menu like this and I was appalled that some people would order like this. That’s crazy! But judging from the familial relationships, I knew it was setting up for something in the end.

I was completely invested in the story between the two boys. Here’s a boy who didn’t know what he liked during his teen years, confused and disheartened he goes through his days in the best way possible. I really love
Gail Carriger
A sweet coming of age story about a young man from an Armenian family. This book is full of contracts between our hero and his friends and his overly strict family. However, there is clearly lots of love. One of my favorite things is how much of the story revolves around food. Also, it is a love ode to New York City (which as a Left Coaster I'm kinda, well, over). At times the story did feel a little twee or pat. Some books are like five point essays, too perfect in form to feel inspirational. I ...more
Adam Silvera
Stayed up until 4 A.M. reading this. So good.
Carole's Random Life
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Macmillan Children's Publishing Group and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

3 Stars

This was an OK book. When I saw this book on Net Galley, I checked the reviews on Goodreads and saw that everyone seemed to LOVE this book. I was so excited to get the chance to sit down with it myself because I wanted to love it too. I love a good coming of age story as much as anyone
I got this book from Russell for Christmas.

This is a story of a 14 year old Armenian American boy who comes out (as you can probably tell from the title.) The book is really sweet and handles coming out deftly. In a post-coming out world, where it's not the big deal it used to be, I thought the author handled this very well. It felt natural and honest.

Armenian heritage, prejudice and culture play a strong role. I feel some of the information about Armenia and Armenian culture was a little force
Dec 29, 2013 Ksenia added it
Shelves: publicist-books
Oh how I enjoyed this book. And so swoonworthy! Loved the fact that Alek was Armenian because I could totally relate (in a Polish way), in regards to having parents and family that rely on upholding traditions from the Old World.
Joy (joyous reads)
“Because anyone who thinks there is something wrong with being gay is like those people you read about in History who believed in segregation. But I bet you Ethan cares, because it sounds to me like he has a crush on you, too.” – Chapter 9, page 107

Imagine for a moment that you’re a fourteen-year-old boy. Your parents just told you that you will be doing summer school, not because you failed, but because your grades could be better. Your parents, who has the combined obsessive tenacity of Rain M
Ashley Williams
I absolutely loved One Man Guy! It was swoony and sweet, but there was an underlying complexity of family issues and culture bias that just moves you.

The Author Writes:
If you are from the suburbs of New Jersey, or love New York City, the music of Rufus Wainwright, falling in love, summer, tennis, or even a single Armenian, I think you will enjoy my book.

I find that I don't fall into most of that category, I have never met an Armenian (but now I want to), don't really like tennis (unless swooni
Shelby P
What an excellent YA novel!! I now feel like an honorary Armenian! I loved this story. The Khederian family felt very real to me. So many good things here. First was Ethan. He's so young but so wise. I had to nominate him as a Book Boyfriend for 2014 (although my friend called me a perv since he's what? 15/16?) But he's the perfect boyfriend for Alek. I'm happy that the most action we got in this book was kissing because I thought Alek was too young at 14 for anything more. Becky was a great bes ...more
Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
3.5 stars
Try as I might, I can only think of several YA books with LGBTQ main characters that really took my breath away. In fact, I can probably count them on my fingers. (Not that I need my fingers to count, people! I suck at math, but not that much!) While this saddens me for so many reasons, it’s comforting to see more and more being written every day. And besides, the novels we do have are all pretty spectacular. Just think: Gone, Gone, Gone by Hannah Moskowitz; Brooklyn, Burning by Steve B
I'm not really sure where to begin with this book except to say: I loved it. Over the course of a single summer, Alek Khederian has his eyes opened and starts to find himself, in part thanks to Ethan, a slightly older boy whose reputation precedes him.

The writing is incredible. The story flows quite well and I found this to be a rather easy read. And it's a coming-of-age tale that I think many people can relate to, everyone in their own way.

I really don't know what more I can say without gushing
*I received a free ARC of One Man Guy from Macmillan Children's Publishing Group via Netgalley in exchange of an honest review*

What can I say? One Man Guy blew me away! Alek is a very young protagonist, but he is a great one all the same, as are the other characters in this story. I loved it all!

This and all my other reviews are originally posted on my blog (un)Conventional Bookviews
*3 stars*

I must confess right off the bat that young adult/new adult m/m is not a personal favorite. But I promised myself at the beginning of this year that I would try new things, read out of my comfort zone, meet new people, challenge myself, etc. I tried, I really did, not to bring along my own personal baggage as I read One Man Guy .

I teach high school. I live and breathe teenagers all day long which is why when I read this book that for every teenage character on page, I had a student
Apr 01, 2015 Mark rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: br
3.5 stars.
BR with Mishmish.

This was so sweet, and young, and beautiful...
It was also somewhat unique read, and if I was a teenager, I can totally see myself falling in love with Ethan!

Well done Michael Barakiva, for an excellent debut novel!
I came for the gay relationship, but stayed for the Armenian culture.

I can tell that the subject matter is very personal to the author, but I'm disappointed. I'm always hesitant to read YA and this really reinforced my misgivings.

•awesome Armenian culture and food talk, the real meat of the story in my opinion

•best friend is a cool girl

•most exciting part is when the family comes home early and walks in on them

•while the main character had a problem w/ the slur faggot he had
Roo James
One Man Guy had been on my radar for a few months now and finally being released, I went to pick it up and got the 1 copy my local bookstore was carrying (why would they only have 1 copy though?)

Moving on... One Man Guy had a lot of pros but also a few cons, in my opinion.
The pros are definitely in the form of Ethan and Becky. Ethan is a total babe which is weird to say because he's like 15 or something, but whatever, I could totally see why Alek was falling for him. Becky is often hilarious, su

One Man Guy has been on my raider for a while now, so sometime last summer when I was browsing Chapters, I came across that beautiful yellow hard cover. Sadly for the rest of the store, I screamed really loudly. #My bad, not that I really care. :p


So I’ve had this gorgeous book on my shelf for a good couple of months with the rest of my emergency book stock pile. Its not that I lost interest in reading it, it just sort of got lost in the rest of my 95 summer book buys. But after reading Aristot
Melissa Veras
Omg, this was so awesome I can't even :D It was so funny! I was laughing out loud until the very end. This is a really cute, light, short read that I highly recommend to everyone that wants to laugh!

The Armenian culture present in this book was awesome, and the food! I find myself wanting to try the Armenian food several times!

Alek, the lead character, is an amazing character, I really loved reading from his point of view!

There were a few things that I have problems with:

-The main characters di
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Actual Rating: 4.5 stars

For more reviews, Cover Snark and more, visit A Reader of Fictions.

At the time of this review going live, I’ll be in Europe, celebrating my birthday. I’ve been treating myself with review books I’m really excited for, like One Man Guy. Basically, if Debby tells me something is fabulous and banterfluffy then obviously I am going to listen to her. Once again, Debby is right. One Man Guy is much like Mary Poppins, in that it’s practically perfect in every way, though obvious
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YA LGBT Books: * October 2014 BotM - One Man Guy *spoilers* 7 60 Nov 03, 2014 02:10PM  
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Michael Barakiva is an Armenian/Israeli theater director and writer who lives in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan with his husband, Rafael. He was born in Haifa, Israel and grew up in the suburbs of Central New Jersey, which were much scarier. He attended Vassar College, where he double majored in Drama and English, after which he attended the Juilliard School's Drama Division as an An ...more
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“You know, when I came home after our day in the city, I just crashed, thinking about Remi and how much I missed him. And then the next day was worse, And when you walked up to me at that ice cream machine, I just felt myself crumble inside. Around Remi, I felt like I was always trying to act like I was good enough. But around you, I don't want to pretend or hide. That's why I didn't say anything in the cafeteria that day, I knew that in five seconds, I'd be crying on your shoulder."

"That's what it's there for, Ethan."

Alek leaned in, took Ethan's face in his hands, and kissed him.”
“All Alek knew was that he missed Seth differently from everything else in the world he left behind.” 6 likes
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