Review: Nothing Special by Geoff Herbach
Author: Geoff Herbach
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication Date: May 1, 2012
ISBN: 1402265077 (ISBN13: 9781402265075)
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Summary (from GoodReads):
Felton Reinstein thought he had it all-a great girlfriend, an athletic scholarship in the bag, and football friends he could totally count on. Wrong Like an elephant storming a house of cards, it all comes crashing down. And it's Felton's fault. Turns out his little brother has taken an impromptu road trip to Florida (aka desperate flight from all the talented people) to make a bid for stardom (aka fronting a hotel rock band with escapees from a retirement community). What's a big brother to do but help pick up the pieces, even if it means giving up all the status, all the glory and once again facing a life of nothing special.
Felton Reinstein is the center of his own universe. He's very talented in the athletic department and it has made his ego swell to epic proportions. His brother, Andrew, has always been a big supporter of Felton. That is until Felton's in-sensitivities gets the better of him. With hurt feelings, Andrew runs away. Felton is then forced to take a hard look at him self. He implores the help of his ex-best friend to drive him across the country to help brother.
This story is written in a journal type that's actually a letter to Felton's girlfriend, Aleah. It's told completely from Felton's point of view. It gives you insight into Felton's head. He's completely clueless to everything around him. He's let down his best friend, he's upset his girlfriend, and he's been a jerk to his brother. However Felton doesn't see what he's done wrong. His character can be very frustrating but you can understand a bit where he is coming from. Nothing Special also deals with the tough subject of suicide. Felton and Andrew's father committed suicide when they were both young. This book shows the devastating, long term impact suicide can have on a family.
Felton goes through an intense emotional journey through Nothing Special. He has a lot to figure out and also to deal with. He has to find a way to make amends to the people he's hurt. Geoff Herbach wrote a deep story about what it is to be a teen who has suffered a great loss. The characters and the way they reacted and interacted with each other felt very real. Overall I thought this was a good story. It has a lot of depth to it. The story line flows easy and the characters are believable. I also think there's a little of Felton in each of us.
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