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3.43  ·  Rating details ·  109 ratings  ·  41 reviews
He's a household name . . . without a home

Jake is an actor, a household name thanks to his role on the UK's most popular soap. But his character went upstairs to his bedroom six months ago and never came down again, and now Jake is facing an uncertain future. Add to that his dad's anger issues, the family's precarious finances and the demands of a severely autistic brother
Paperback, 352 pages
Published August 4th 2016 by Little, Brown/Atom (first published 2016)
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Average rating 3.43  · 
Rating details
 ·  109 ratings  ·  41 reviews

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Sarah Elizabeth
2.5 stars
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Little, Brown Book Group UK and NetGalley.)

This was a story written in the form of a script, about a cancelled TV show.

Jake was an okay character, and I did feel sorry for him when he couldn’t get a job and his parents had taken all his money.

This book just didn’t do it for me; we had a script-like writing style, and basically the story was about Jake’s life leading up the TV show being cancel
Sep 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
“The capacity for friendship is God's way of apologizing for our families.”

----Jay McInerney

Keren David, a British writer, has penned a heart touching and an eye opening YA contemporary book, Cuckoo that narrates the story of a sixteen year old teenager, a talented actor and a household name for his recently cancelled TV series, who found out that his own parents are stealing his hard earned money and is constantly pressurizing him to bag a role in some new show or a movie, eventually making
Cora Tea Party Princess
May 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
5 Words: Fame, family, friendship, homeless, dementia.

Keren David is one of those authors who isn't afraid to tackle challenging and controversial subjects, and this book is no different. I feel like this was a very relevant story, and despite being quite short it touched upon so many things.

This story is written in a style that readers will either love and embrace or just not gel with. I can see both sides of the coin but personally I loved it. I loved how little was actually given away, how ve
Lauren James

This is absolutely unique and original and I'm in awe of it. It's told in the format of transcripts of a youtube account, which posts dramatised autobiographical accounts of something which happened in the protagonist Jake's past (but we aren't told what happened - just that the Eastenders-style sitcom he acted on was shut down because of something he did.)

It's told from his point of view, giving 'his side of the story' - so from the start, it's obvious he's an biased and unreliable nar
Apr 30, 2015 rated it it was ok
I think the way this is told is either going to be something you love or hate. Unfortunately it didn't work for me.

Much of the story is told via video diary which is filmed after the events with characters played by other characters. I found it really hard to get my head around it and it meant the retelling was incredibly unreliable which again I couldn't get my head around.
Jul 14, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-to-review
(I received a copy from Netgalley, In exchange for an honest review.)

Actual rating - 2.5

This wasn't one I enjoyed unfortunately. It bored me quite quickly, and it got worse for me as it progressed. It just couldn't get me interested at all, so the whole thing dragged badly for me.

Overall, Not an enjoyable read.
Marco Esteves
Mar 13, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-english

hmm I'm very confused
Aug 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I came across this book at YALC, and after seeing a panel that Keren was on, I was really interested in the narrative of this story. Although, I got the main plotline completely wrong.

I thought it was going to be about an actor with anxiety who was confined to his own bedroom and he had to be coaxed out slowly by those who cared about him. But it's about a boy whose character is 'sent' to his bedroom and effectively his acting job/career is in the balance, and all the events that transpire as a
Lara Liz
Aug 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I would like to just say that my true rating is 4 and a half stars, and that Goodreads truly is annoying about half stars. That'll be all! ...more
May 24, 2017 rated it liked it
I found this on a best-of YA list, and it was just okay. Written as a series of web videos, Jake explains to his fans what happened after his British soap opera character was basically written out of the show. What follows for Jake is homelessness, clashes with friends and family, and a rude awakening about the acting world.

The story is cute and Jake is definitely likable, and the online comments on each episode are annoying, rude, ridiculous and--sadly--accurate. It's also a fairly quick read--
Bel Cat
Apr 13, 2017 rated it it was ok
This book was super average. It's not very memorable.

The main character was very dramatic and at some points I was just like, "Dude. Go home."

I didn't connect with any of the characters, the storyline was cliché and predictable, and the ending was very unrealistic.

However, it was a very easy, non-challenging book, and was very quick to finish.
Tara Russell
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is unusual, but it really works. Jake is a young actor, a household name due to his part in a soap opera, but then his life derails...
Isobel Radakovic
The premise of this book really intrigued me; soaps are such a big part of the UK and millions of people watch them every day. Personally, I've never been able to keep up with how often they're on. Cuckoo really gave me a deeper insight into the world of soaps, and just how cut-throat the business can be. The whole soap drama, with Jake being written off the show for so long was what I liked about the book. What I didn't like was the video diaries and the reenactments - and I disliked them so mu ...more
Aug 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Wow! This is a complex story nimbly and originally told. I've never read anything quite like it. The conceit of the web series format (the whole book is in YouTube transcript form) is anchored by the emotional depth of Keren David's writing. The spotlight on youth homelessness is a welcome one - it's vital that YA discusses issues that affect young adults, after all. I also love all the Hamlet. ...more
Mar 10, 2018 rated it liked it
Sorry I haven't been writing any reviews for a while. Life's a little all over the place right now.

This was one of the books I picked up from the library without knowing anything about it, so I was pretty excited to read it. It was definitely different to what I expected; it's written in "episodes" but not quite like a script. It's more detailed and less firmly structured, but is from the point of view of the audience of the episodes (not any of the characters in the actual scene). The episodes
Wendy Williams
Nov 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Quite enjoyed the script style story although sometimes I had to read back to work out who was speaking. Jake is clearly the protaganist in this book but there is suddenly a random chapter from Marguerite's viewpoint which was confusing. It was also difficult to like Jake who seems selfish, self-obsessed and totally unable to empathise with his parents who were suffering so many difficulties with job loss, financial difficulties, and an autistic son. If Jake had been a more likeable character I ...more
Jul 20, 2017 rated it did not like it
DNF. Shame, because I have enjoyed this author's other novels, but the way Cuckoo was written - in scripts, and comments - just didn't engage or gel with me. I found it tough to get any feeling for the characters and rather confusing as to what was going on and who was speaking,

Love the front cover, though!
Matthew Bapty
Jul 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Brilliant, thoughtful story- just don't think I was too keen on the writing style or the dialogue, it seemed fake... ...more
Emily Kathleen
Loved how it was written and how different it was - thought it got better and better as you got through it
Sue Murdoch
Jan 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
A salutary lesson in how easily a great lifestyle can be snatched away. A pacy book which makes us think.
Aug 26, 2019 rated it it was ok
Enjoyed the plot but found it hard to get into the story. Didn't like the TV script style and the "comment section" style of characters giving their opinions ...more
Mar 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teen
Check out my review in my blog You Know You Wanna Read It: ...more
Nov 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
From the acclaimed author of When I Was Joe and This Is Not a Love Story, Cuckoo is a novel about what happens when teenagers fall through the cracks, and finding unlikely solace when home is the least welcoming place of all. I loved Keren David’s Salvage – the warm, engaging, dramatic tale of Aidan and Cass, a brother and sister separated by adoption and facing their own struggles at a time when their lives come twining back together – so of course I had high expectations for her latest novel. ...more
Kirsty Clark
Feb 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
So, I randomly picked up this book to read on holiday and it turns out it's about a young person who temporarily experiences homelessness. Working for a youth homelessness charity, I was interested to see how this subject would be portrayed. Some elements of his story are of course particular to the overall plot but it gave a great insight into family breakdown and how young people can become homeless. The prose was quite simplistic (it is young adult fiction after all) but it challenges some of ...more
Alice Nuttall
Feb 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant, wonderfully-written book, told in a very interesting style (all-dialogue).
Oct 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017, 2016
I am a big fan of Keren so, I was really happy when I got sent a proof of Cuckoo. I had to pick it up straight away as the story line had me intrigued and the cover is so striking that I had to read it as soon as I got it. This story is told a lot defiantly from other books and you'll either love it or hate and I loved it. It was so different from any other book that I have read before and it was really interesting.

Jake is a household name. He is a famous teen actor on Market Square but, he is g
Lydia Hephzibah
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was ok
I read this entire book in the time it took between boarding my plane in Dublin and landing in Birmingham: it was a short, easy read with virtually no description. The entire novel is told through transcripts of YouTube videos and the comments on each one, which wasn't what I was expecting based on the blurb, so it was a bit of a surprise but after a bit of confusion, it became easy to distinguish what was going on.

I have to give credit where credit's due as despite this essentially being a dial
Aug 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
It’s been a while since I read Cuckoo (I read it during YALC weekend!) but I’ve been way behind on my reviewing due to a job offer(!) and trying to pack up to move house…

Cuckoo is the story of Jake, an actor in Market Square, the country’s hottest soap. Except he’s pretty much been dropped, and his family are suffering from the lack of income. His dad’s angrier, and Jake’s autistic brother Adam can be difficult to deal with - and then Jake finds out none of the money he’s earned over the years h
Oct 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: give-aways
I initially went into reading this book not knowing what to expect, and it really surprised me. It took a couple of 'episodes' to understand the writing style, it's a great story and I managed to read it in one sitting. Well... one day. I didn't want it to end, it left me wanting more and wanting to know what happened next. I loved the way that it was styled, and the story line really had me hooked. I wanted so much more, and in my opinion I wanted that book to be 500 pages long because I didn't ...more
Sep 15, 2016 rated it liked it
Unfortunately this book wasn't one of the best.Written in a form of script it was telling the story of sixteen year old Jake a TV soap actor,who lost contract,home and fame.Jake didn't tolerate his brother's illness,didn't wanted to live with parents in the smaller property ,constantly arguing with parents what lead him to be homeless.In my opinion this book was focused too much on teenage fame and it was really teenage read. ...more
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YA Buddy Readers'...: Cuckoo By Keren David - Starting July 26th 2016 11 8 Jul 26, 2016 06:48AM  

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