With a plunging reputation and enrollment rate, Saint Michael’s has become a crumbling dumping ground for expelled delinquents and a haven for the stridently religious when incoming freshman Peter Davidek signs up. On his first day, tensions are clearly on the rise as a picked-upon upperclassmen finally snaps, unleashing a violent attack on both the students who tormented him for so long, and the corrupt, petty faculty that let it happen. But within this desperate place, Peter befriends fellow freshmen Noah Stein, a volatile classmate whose face bears the scars of a hard-fighting past, and the beautiful but lonely Lorelei Paskal —so eager to become popular, she makes only enemies.
To even stand a chance at surviving their freshmen year, the trio must join forces as they navigate a bullying culture dominated by administrators like the once popular Ms. Bromine, their embittered guidance counselor, and Father Mercedes, the parish priest who plans to scapegoat the students as he makes off with church finances. A coming-of-age tale reversed, Brutal Youth follows these students as they discover that instead of growing older and wiser, going bad may be the only way to survive.
I wanted to share this awesome thing that happened to me. Not like in a bragging way, because believe me, I am in no position to ever be bragging. Good things happen to me like once every 3 years. But a few months back, I read this amazing book, Brutal Youth. You see, I'm from Pittsburgh, and I knew that this author was too, and that the book was set in a suburb of the 'Burgh that I have been to many times, so I wanted to see what it was all about. I didn't know much else about it, but a few girls in my book club warned me that it starts out FAST. I was in love with the cover (still am), but then I fell in love with these amazingly unique characters. How they were so flawed. How they all interconnected, the setting, everything.
So Mr. Breznican approached me and asked me if he could use a blurb from my review when the paperback came out!! Well.... It came out and I can't believe he put me in there!! It's just a small little blurb towards the end of a long list of praise for this wonderful book, but it made me excited.
The graphic at the top of this post was made by the author and sent to me. Which I thought was just so nice. It's a beautiful picture of the Tarentum Bridge. Pittsburgh is a city full of bridges... some might say we have the most of any city in the world, but that all depends on various factors... anyway we have a lot, and this is one that, I think, says Pittsburgh just by looking at it. It's also an important location in the book, being the place where many of the big transition points of the plot take place.
But the real deal here is that I wanted everyone to know that the book came out in paperback June 2nd. If you haven't read it yet, I SO recommend. Here's my original review. What I loved most about it is that it has the feel of an Adult book, but it's about teenagers. So few YA books capture that feeling.
*Getting ready for my reread!!*