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Man Up

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  61 ratings  ·  14 reviews
With David’s final baseball season starting and college plans still up on the air, he begins senior year on edge. But when his baseball coach, Coach Kelly, wants to know if David is gay, he is left speechless. David knows the answer to the question but was hoping to get through his final year without anyone noticing the hallway glances at Tyler, a star on the boy’s track t ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published April 22nd 2020 by Trism Books
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Average rating 4.03  · 
Rating details
 ·  61 ratings  ·  14 reviews

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Nicole M. Hewitt
This LGBT story highlights the importance of taking control of your own destiny and your own narrative. David is going into his senior year feeling uncertain about his future---he needs a scholarship in order to be able to afford college, and baseball is his best chance for that. He's been one of the star players on his team since sophomore year. But when a teammate goes to the coach with the accusation that David is gay, he has to decide how to handle it. Should he ignore it, deny it or admit t ...more
Samantha (WLABB)
Mar 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: contemporary, lgbtqia, ya
Due to his family's economic situation, David knew the only way he could go to college was on a baseball scholarship. This dream was looking promising, until the team bully caught David in his crosshairs, and decided to out him in an attempt to remove him from the team. But, the damage was done, and David wondered, if he would be able to wrest control of the narrative, and get his life back on track.

I really felt for David. His senior year was going ok. He was working hard to advance his game, a
May 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Kim's a friend of mine, so I may be a bit biased in posting a positive review of her debut novel Man Up, but then again, I wouldn't be posting a review at all if I didn't genuinely enjoy reading it.

Man Up does what all great YA does so well: From page one, it immerses you in the tense psychodrama of its characters' everyday lives and doesn't let go. And those characters feel so real—especially the protagonist David and the delightfully quirky Allie. Kevin feels pretty real too, unfortunately. (W
Ashley Holstrom
"An uplifting coming-of-age novel in which a high school senior figures out how to be himself, Kim Oclon’s Man Up finds David wondering how to come out to his baseball team."

Reviewed for Foreword Reviews.
May 28, 2020 rated it liked it
This was an okay read. It didn't really wow me in any way or bring anything new to the table as far as LGBT books go, but we always need more so I'm glad I read it. I didn't really see the point of having Tyler's point of view, as his chapters were short and didn't add too much that could have been said through David's perspective. The book also felt all over the place at some points, and wrapped up way too quickly in my opinion. I feel like it should have been a hundred or so pages more. Import ...more
So I’ve known about David for years and it was such fun to learn how his story plays out. I loved the emphasis on controlling the narrative and how important it is for someone to be able to come out on their own terms. I also really liked the somewhat “side story” of David’s college decision. Plenty of high schoolers thumb their noses at community college (ugh, tragically I WAS one of those kids) so that felt very realistic. Even though he never came to *love* the idea, it was nice to see him re ...more
Jun 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
This book takes a thoughtful look at what being Gay and Out in high-school is really like. Author Kim Oclon's debut novel hits all the right notes as we follow high school senior David through his last year of high school where all he wants is to play baseball and get a scholarship to college, until he's outed by a team bully and has to figure out his next best move. With new information and new situations coming at David from all sides, the reader is sucked into the journey right along with Dav ...more
Amy Potts Ostrowski
Aug 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Man Up has all the ingredients to keep readers turning pages late into the night. Rich, dynamic characters drive a plot with an effective balance of fast-paced action and deep internalization of the main character, David. Family, friendships, futures, and high school sports make this a book that would appeal to most teens (and adults!) and lends itself to great discussion.

In the classroom, 7th grade and up seems like a good fit. Not only is this a book to keep on the classroom shelf, but one to
Marieke du Pré
Jul 14, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: lgbtq, young-adult
This was a nice read but somehow I expected more. More dept, more interaction between David and Tyler, more pages. In my opinion Tyler’s POV didn’t add that much to the story and I’d liked it if there were about 100 pages more. I liked the two POV’s and Allie, Mike was a bit invisible.
W.S. Long
Oct 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great YA story

This is a great YA story about coming out in high school, fitting in, surviving bullying, and homophobes. It ends in a Happy For Now. I would definitely recommend to any teenager or reader of YA LGBT stories.
Nathan Muschinske
Nov 04, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good story overall.

Had a good story overall. There was occasional misuse of the first/second person. This was a quick read and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was hard to put down.
Jason Brescia
May 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful book focusing in on timely issues such as LGBTQ+ in a school athletic setting, familial relationships, bullying, and toxic masculinity. An absolute must read!!!!
Jul 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Thank you, Kim, for writing this book. Thank you for bringing this story into the world.

I was the student who started the GSA that inspired Kim to write this book. I owe her a huge amount of gratitude for seeing me, hearing me, and validating me. I owe her gratitude for helping me to fight for that little club. All I ever wanted was a safe place to really be myself when the school administration was pushing back against me every step of the way. You and Katie fought harder than I ever realized o
Trinity Miller
Mar 20, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtq
Book Review 💙⚾️

Man Up, by Kim Oclon

For all my queer book fans, this one is for you! Especially if you love a story full of high-school angst, unexpected friendships and realistic fiction.

Man Up stole my heart! ☺️

David is a senior in high school and thinking about what the future holds for him. His passion in life is playing baseball and his secret romance with Tyler. But when rumors start to circulate and his coach asks him if he is gay, how will David protect himself from judgement but also li
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With a BA in screenwriting and MFA in Fiction, Kim Oclon taught high school for seven years before becoming a mom to the best girl and boy in the world. While teaching, she taught creative writing and film classes in addition to the classics. She also co-founded the school's first gay-straight alliance. A reader all her life, Kim's first literary loves were a series of Care Bear Books. Eventually, ...more

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