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A Very, Very Bad Thing

3.36  ·  Rating details ·  554 ratings  ·  99 reviews
From the author of Drag Teen, a startling novel about the complexities of identity -- and of truth.

Marley doesn't just want to be labeled The Gay Kid, but he doesn't have much else going on. He doesn't have any hobbies. Or interests. He's the only kid he knows without a passion . . . until Christopher comes to town. He's smart, cute, gay, and . . . the son of the country'
ebook, 256 pages
Published October 31st 2017 by Push
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Average rating 3.36  · 
Rating details
 ·  554 ratings  ·  99 reviews

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Elle (ellexamines)
When I first read A Very, Very Bad Thing, I thought I should have enjoyed it. But the more I think about this book and all it entails, the more confident I become that this is something a little worse – it is one of those lgbtq books that is not written for queer teens, but for those looking for a little Suffer Porn.

[I’m tired.]

I’m going to try to explain this as best I can. When a book starts out as a somewhat-romcom with no substance [i mean...], it does not end in a tragic ending. Right? Unl
Jan 18, 2018 rated it did not like it
a list of things that are NOT okay
- this book
- honestly don’t read it
- it made me way too sad
- please don’t read it
- is the book's title talking about itself

Reading this is like walking towards a nuclear bomb with people you love. It's kind of weird - the characters aren't extremely likable and the writing isn't great, but it felt real enough. I got so attached to the characters, and I sensed that feeling that this will all end badly (see: nuclear bomb) but I tried to pretend it wasn't going
Peter Monn
Dec 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Omg this book! So powerful, so profound and so important. I’ll be posting my full review on my booktube channel at ...more
Jun 28, 2018 rated it did not like it
This book turned out to be a very bad thing. It started off sweet, but I ended up having more problems than benefits. Admittedly, a faster than real life developing romance is not unusual in YA literature; however, I think that 225 actual story pages in this case are not enough to develop round characters. Here lies also one of my main problems: the book seemed like something what a stereotypical Hollywood studio would produce. The parents of both Marley and Christopher fell flat and were exagge ...more
Sylvia Flowers
Nov 15, 2017 rated it did not like it
Disappointing. Flat characters, unimaginative dialogue, and a weak plot.
Feb 06, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Maybe this book could have been saved if it had had character development? As is, it's one of the most forgettable YA books I've read. ...more
Jun 15, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2018
Bury your gays trope.
Nov 27, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, lgbtq, reviewed, ya, z-2018
The non-spoiler part of the review:
-This was going to be three stars and a lot of side-eye, but then I got to the end, it's two stars and a lot of side-eye.

-It seems to be a thing in queer YA fiction for the pendulum of parental support to swing wildly between you're going to hell and yay! You're gay! Let's throw a party! (This book offers both versions.) I'm looking forward to the day that the pendulum spends more time around 'That's nice, dear. Now would you please take out the trash?
runa ✧*:・.
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
raise ur hand if ur SICK of very, very bad things happening to very, very good gay characters

ugh i'm just.... SO disappointed ))))))):

the worst thing was that i truly believed that the author would flip everything on its head, and that instead of the unhappy ending we were being lead to believe we were getting, we'd be surprised with a happy one. but that rarely happens, right? especially when it comes to gay characters. everyone just seems to have a shite time and me - a lil gay - is left depre
Nov 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook, fiction, 2017
Listened to the audiobook, read by the author, Jeffery Self. Loved this story.
Feb 23, 2018 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 05, 2020 rated it did not like it
This was a mess and I still cannot process what happened. 1 star

I read a lot of bad reviews before I started reading this book and I guess I were not warned enough. I thought: Oh wow, this book has such a pretty cover and centers around LGBT topics! It cannot be a bad book.


The beginning was rather ordinary so I decided that many reviews are probably exaggerating about how bad this book is, but I swear they were not. I sincerely apologize to anyone I doubted. This book is indeed a
Alex (Pucksandpaperbacks)
I was sent this novel from Scholastic in exchange for an honest review. This does not change my opinion in any way.

CW: suicide, homophobia, death (graphic).

Heartbreaking, comical, and a real tear-jerker. This novel was so good and pulled at my heart in many ways. Marley and Christopher have a relationship that I became easily invested in (like Marley). Through flashbacks of two months and the present "now", we learn about Marley's very, very bad thing and his relationship with Christopher, a
Nancy Violet
Jan 08, 2021 rated it it was ok
This had some serious tonal issues, and the first half was so uninteresting that I was extremely close to DNF. This one was not for me.
I am not entirely sure what to say about this book. It was alright. The plot was interesting but it just kind of fell flat for me. The relationship was very speedy and not quite believable.
Jake Koerts
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
The only reason I have this book 4 stars and not 5 is because I didn’t believe it was nuanced or detailed enough for the important issue it is trying to address. Other than that, this book has truly broken me. Acceptance is such an important issue in the LGBTQIA+ discourse, and as an 18 year old with accepting parents I have overindulged in ignorance towards this problem. Many kids are shut out due to religion, parents will put their beliefs before their kids not realising their wrongs until it ...more
Dec 27, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, lgbtq, ya
Hmmm I meannn this was a fast-paced (maybe too fast? but it was a quick read), enjoyable-enough read. Jeffery Self definitely has jokes. The relationship plot develops so quickly--which definitely happens in other YA novels--but it just made everything else hard to buy into.

anyway it's a big concept that doesn't quite gel together. But it's a quick read and has some funny moments. I liked Jeffery Self's last YA book, Drag Teen, more--it wasn't stellar but it was funny and it wasn't aiming for s
Sarah {Literary Meanderings}
I had some issues with the character development. There was also some insta-love going on. Aside from that, this was a good book. Short, but good. I listened on audio; the author was the narrator and he did a really good job. I have listened to other books with the author as a narrator and I honestly think it is a bad idea sometimes, but thankfully that wasn't the case here.

Full review to come!
Forever Young Adult
Graded By: Brian
Cover Story: I Must Have Missed It
Drinking Buddy: Non Alcoholic Beer
Testosterone Level: Could Be Better
Talky Talk: A Quick Bite
Bonus Factor: Moral Conundrum
Bromance Status: I Like You, But For the Wrong Reasons

Read the full book report here.
Sep 27, 2018 rated it did not like it
(view spoiler)

I'm with the people that felt like this book did not add depth to any discussion, but is talking about topical issues just to sensationalize them, and i'm not on board with it.

The story did start out super cute, but yeeeeeeah.
Oct 30, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 26, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: lgbt, young-adult
2 - 2.5 ⭐️ Somewhere in between.

For such a short book, it took me so much time to finish. The message is loud and clear. But a good message doesn’t make up for the lack of character dynamics, realistic timeline, proper pacing, and seamless transitions.
Erin Milham
Oct 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I did yell at one of the characters for making a very stupid decision but that gets resolved very nicely so who cares!
Ali M
Oct 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaways
I received this book as a giveaway. This was a book that hit all of the emotions.
Jahnavi gb
Jul 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book is really inspiring, this book changed my mind of thinking about any gay kind and I literally cried a lot whn the part where Christopher died the author has written this book in a beautiful manner,this is 1 of my fav novel
Eli B.
A Very, Very Bad Thing
JAN 10-JAN 11 2019
3 Stars
ARC Copy

I came into this book with little expectations, as I didn’t know much about it. Occasionally, in the case of this book for example, I have thrown books onto my shelf to read simply because they have LGBT themes.

I enjoyed the journey. It was a pretty quick read, It quite reminded me of when you watch a random indie film Youtube has thrown at you, and similarly the book actually has a sort of an indie film type feel.

‘“If you could come back a
Liyah Smith
Oct 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed taking the time to read this book. It was pretty amazing for me. I loved how it created the scene of teens, high school, etc. I was really engaged with the character, almost as if he were telling me his story. The way the author wrote and the mood that was set in this novel really created an image. I felt happy, sad, angry, shocked, etc. And some things I just knew they were coming. Marley was a seventeen year old high school kid who fell in love with Christopher. However, Chris ...more
Dustin Dwiggins
Mar 02, 2020 rated it liked it
Cute n easy
Caroline Fosse
A Very, Very Bad Thing follows Marley who doesn’t want to be labeled «the gay kid», but feels like he doesn’t really have much else going on, no hobbies and no interest. That is, until Christopher comes to town, the son of the country’s most famous television evangelist.

As Marley and Christopher quickly becomes inseparable, Christopher’s parents send their son away for a «Pray Away the Gay» program, and they plan his escape. But something goes wrong, and Marley is forced to deal with the conseq
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Jeffery Self is a writer and performer based in Los Angeles. He recently co--wrote and starred in "You're Killing Me", a feature film distributed by Wolfe Releasing. He was the co-creator and star of "Jeffery and Cole Casserole" on Logo (with Cole Escola). He has appeared in various television shows such as 90210, Difficult People, Hot In Cleveland, Shameless, and 30 Rock. He has produced/written ...more

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