Advertisement

Funny, tragic teen tries to fit in

October 02, 2007|By EVA NIESSNER

Book review

Billy Bloom is a complete fish out of water at his new preppy Florida high school. Sure, he's rich enough - he has his own maid. And he's confident enough. Thing is, Billy, the main character in James St. James' "Freak Show," is a cross-dresser - a self-described "glitteroid."

Neither of his parents really like him. His classmates don't like him. His maid doesn't even like him. But Billy, with the help of a mumbling girl and the hottest guy in his grade, is determined to make a place for himself at his new school.

I couldn't put "Freak Show" down. Literally. I read it all in two hours because I didn't want to stop.

St. James' writing is fresh and modern. I screamed with laughter as I despaired for poor Billy. The narration is witty and quotable. On the topic of Zelda Fitzgerald's death, Billy proclaims "The mental institution she was in caught FIRE! That's like being allergic to your shark bites! It just makes everything worse!"

Advertisement

The ending is a bit predictable, but the good outweighs the bad in this book about 8 billion to 1. I would recommend this book to any teen looking for a hilarious, glamorous underdog story that's anything but clich.

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|