Sunday, March 12, 2017

One of the Boys by Daniel Magariel: A Review


A young boy will do anything to be "one of the boys"; to be included in the club that his father dominates and his brother is already firmly apart of, even if that means lying about his mother to social services.  The brothers favor their father over their mother and move with him to Albuquerque, leaving behind all contact with their mom, but the fun stops there.  At first, their father encourages the boys to have their own privacy and freedom.  Soon, the brothers realize that their father is a violent addict that begins to abuse them and force them into his world of addiction.  While he is horrifically abusive, the boys learn one positive thing from their father- to stick together as brothers, no matter what.

One of the Boys is a very short book, at only 176 pages, and it reads very quickly.  The writing is very fluid and easy to read.  The stories in the book are not so easy to read but they are very honest.  If the book did not say that it was a novel, I would have believed that it was a memoir because the author describes the hopelessness, but also the intense loyalty, that an abusive family often exhibit.  The brothers constantly wonder what they can do to make their father happy, in the classic way that children of addicts will often parent their parents.  The boys also try to make their life as normal as they can while trying to hide the sins of their father.  The characters were not as complex as I would have liked them to be and I was a little confused at the ending but the rest of the book more than made up for that.  I really enjoyed this book and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys novels about boys coming of age and who don't mind that some of the book can be quite sad.  It is a thought-provoking book that I believe is very important literature.

Reviews of books like this one:
The Mothers by Brit Bennett
Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler
Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

This book is available on March 14th and can be purchased from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.  Read more reviews on this book on Goodreads.

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher in order to review it but that did not have an effect on my review of the book.  This is my honest opinion of this book.  I am a participant in the Amazon Affiliates program.  By clicking on the Amazon link and purchasing this product, I receive a small fee.  I am not associated with Goodreads or Barnes and Noble in any way and the links provided are available strictly for your convenience and not to imply a relationship of any kind.

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