Operating under the premise that by high school, a kid is defined by one word only, 12-year-old Davis O’Brien attempts to find his own adjective before anyone else can give him one.
Davis’ two best friends already have their descriptors. Ellen is the mean one. Sophie is the pretty one. Davis’ worst nightmare is that he will be known not as the nice kid or the smart kid or even the weird kid but as the husky kid. But he soon realizes that there are meaner things than euphemisms for fat when Sophie’s new friends call him a fag. And while Davis obsesses about his hygiene, his music, his family, and his place in the world, his sexual orientation is barely on the horizon. Brooklyn with its diverse population is an evocative backdrop for Davis’ soul-searching. Readers who press through the slow start will be rewarded by genuinely funny observations, heart-wrenching social anguish, and the pull of wanting to belong. This is not at its heart a book about sexuality but about humanity. And while ultimately Davis is given his word, by then he realizes that he is defined by so much more.
Humorous and heartfelt.(Fiction. 10-14)