Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Boy Who Could Make Himself Disappear” as Want to Read:
The Boy Who Could Make Himself Disappear
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Boy Who Could Make Himself Disappear

4.14  ·  Rating Details  ·  108 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
A twelve-year-old boy with a psychological speech defect gradually develops a schizophrenic withdrawal after moving from Los Angeles to live with his mother in New York following the divorce of his harsh and detached parents.
Mass Market Paperback, 224 pages
Published September 15th 1971 by Laurel Leaf
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 The Boy Who Could Make Himself Disappear, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Boy Who Could Make Himself Disappear

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 159)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jeffrey Westhoff
Apr 23, 2015 Jeffrey Westhoff rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-influences
When I was a teenager I pretty much bypassed books written for young adults (this was before the category Young Adult had a name). I plunged into mysteries and spy novels written for grown-ups, skipping directly from one spy, Harriet, to another, James Bond. The only "age appropriate" book I remember reading was Kin Platt's "The Boy Who Could Make Himself Disappear," though I honestly can't remember what persuaded me to pick it up. Yet it stayed with me through the years. It was the first book t ...more
Jeri Massi
Apr 29, 2013 Jeri Massi rated it really liked it
I read this when I was about 12 or 13. so, almost 40 years ago. Yes, it is depressing,and I'm not sure why anybody would want a child to read it. Then again, it's a great look at the loneliness and isolation some children experience. I'd recommend it only to older children: 15 and above. The first 3/4 of the book runs smoothly and is engrossing. It loses some of its tight narrative towards the end. To the best of my recollection, Roger is diagnosed as "autistic" in the end of the book, when he g ...more
Greg Schroeder
Jan 03, 2013 Greg Schroeder rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite books as a teen.
Jul 22, 2014 Ilandere rated it really liked it
The Boy Who Could Make Himself Disappear tells the story of Roger, a boy with a speech deficit who can't pronounce his R's. His parents, a big-time movie producer and an artist, divorce and he moves from California to New York with his artist mother.

Roger is a very...interesting character. How else can I say it? He's fascinating, for sure. He has a different way of looking at things because everything is so new to him in New York, but also because he seems very much like a loner whose childhood
Dec 30, 2008 Kyla rated it liked it
I came upon this book when searching for other books similar to The Perks of Being a Wallflower (one of my favs!) Many people compared the two books, so I decided to read it. I can definitely see the parallels between the two. I still like The Perks of Being a Wallflower the best, but I could still sympathize with Roger's life. I can't imagine having a life with parents that make you feel invisible and don't listen to what you have to share. As a teacher, it was more eye opening to the way we tr ...more
Jul 04, 2015 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
I must admit, after finishing this book, I was utterly speechless. The author's psychological theme of Roger's slow descent into "invisibility" was truly effective. His insecurity, frightening life with his abusive mother, and his constabt inward battles all were rooted from his speech impediment. I, myself, had a tongue threst for years, so I could relate at least a little bit about the embarrassment of not speaking properly in front of my peers. But otherwise, the story had a much darker theme ...more
Ace Bannon
Sep 13, 2011 Ace Bannon rated it it was amazing
This was my favorite book as a young teen. I found it in the junior high library in 1972, read it, identified with the young protagonist Roger Baxter, and bought a copy for my own when it came out in paperback. That copy is long lost but I've recently purchased a first edition hardback and am looking forward to reading it again.
Feb 24, 2013 Margo rated it it was amazing

I must have read this book 20 times from 6th grade through junior high school. Yes, it is hard, and probably depressing to some, but it saved me. It was me. And finding someone like me in print helped so much.
Tristan Goding
Nov 06, 2015 Tristan Goding rated it liked it
This book was quite powerful. What a scary, heartless character the mother in this book is. That's one aspect of it that I'll never forget it. It was definitely ahead of its time in terms of how it deals with mental illness, particularly schizophrenia. When I first read it, I thought it'd been written a lot more recently than the 60s. Having re-read it, yes, I can now see some things that might seem a little dated, but the writing sure hasn't aged, nor has its message! Check it out! It's quite u ...more
In this story, an already troubled twelve-year-old boy gradually sinks into the abyss after his wealthy parents divorce and he moves to New York City with his abusive mother. By the end of the book, Roger is in a "schizophrenic withdrawal": hospitalized, mute and completely unresponsive to his environment.

This book was published in 1968 and it shows its age. I cannot imagine a boy Roger's age being able to run around 21st century New York City to the extent that he does in the novel, and his "sc
William Crosby
Apr 16, 2015 William Crosby rated it it was amazing
About a boy with speech and psychological difficulties. He is doubtful as to whether to try to communicate anymore: it is so difficult. I identified with the book and Roger. I cried (tears) at the ending.
Mike Budzik
Sep 27, 2014 Mike Budzik rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 07, 2009 Jackie rated it it was amazing
this was a really good book. i read this years ago and i totally enjoyed it. i've read this twice, and wish i can find it again.
May 20, 2008 Sue rated it it was amazing
A heart-wrenching story told in first person by a boy with abusive and uncaring parents. I still cry when I read this one.
Nov 23, 2013 Katie rated it it was amazing
This was one of my favorite books in Middle School. I wonder if I would still like it.
Andy Mascola
Aug 10, 2013 Andy Mascola rated it liked it
Abused boy moves to NYC after his uncaring parent's divorce. Good not great.
Apr 06, 2012 Shari rated it it was amazing
I read this book many times. It made me cry but in a good way
Jan 05, 2011 Julie rated it it was amazing
Amazing book.
Aug 08, 2013 Amy rated it it was amazing
Nicole marked it as to-read
Apr 08, 2016
Tapati rated it it was amazing
Mar 17, 2016
Dawn marked it as to-read
Feb 10, 2016
Karen Chance
Karen Chance rated it liked it
Jan 09, 2016
Edward rated it it was amazing
Dec 28, 2015
Russ rated it really liked it
Dec 07, 2015
Steven rated it really liked it
Nov 24, 2015
Stephen marked it as to-read
Nov 14, 2015
E rated it it was amazing
Oct 29, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »
Kin Platt (1911–2003) was the author of the perennially popular I Can Read Book Big Max, as well as several outstanding young-adult novels and the Max Roper mystery series for adults. Mr. Platt was also a noted cartoonist.

For more information, please see
More about Kin Platt...

Share This Book