Reality Boy – A S King

I received Reality Boy as an Advance Review Copy, although it was actually published on 22nd October. I’ve not read any AS King books, and originally got it as I thought my daughter may enjoy it.

Everybody knows who Gerald Faust is – or at least they think they do. When her was five, his mother invited a TV crew in to document their life as part of a reallity show. The day the crew turned up, complete with the show’s ‘nanny’, was the day that Gerald started to have anger issues – and he has remained angry ever since.

So, twelve years later, Gerald is finally at an age where he is an adult and can start leaving his childhood and past behind – isn’t he? Can he ever shake the image that everyone has of him? Will Gerald ever be able to lead a normal life? Is there anything at all that could stop Gerald from feeling so angry?

First of all, my daughter read this on holiday and absolutely loved it – although, being a bit prim for a 14 year old, she was a little surprised that I let her read a book with some rude words in it!

I don’t know what I was expecting from it, but this wasn’t it.

I loved the way that King just drip-dripped Gerald’s back story. When we first meet him, we think that he was obviously a child with issues, that the presence of the TV crew had highlighted, and that his poor parents must have had an awful time with him.

As we progress through the book, learning more of Gerald’s side of the story, and some of the scenes that occured off-camera, we see that things weren’t actually how everyone remembers them being – and perhaps Gerald is owed a huge apology from the people closest to him.

Gerald was an immensely likeable character – and he became more likeable as the book went on. The more we learned about him, the more we understood the reasons behind his actions earlier on.

I’ve always wondered what happens out of camera-shot on reality shows, but, just like everyone else, I’m prone to make decisions about their character based on their screen time. It’s human nature, isn’t it? However, reading this book makes you take a moment, to ponder on what actually is ‘reality’.

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