Sunday, June 29, 2014

Guy In Real Life by Steve Brezenoff

Guy In Real Life by Steve Brezenoff

Guy In Real Life is a book about a lot of things.  It's a book about Lesh, who listens to heavy metal music, wears black clothes and is your average kind of sensitive weird guy who starts playing an online video game after he gets grounded for getting drunk.  He admires a beautiful girl from his school named Svetlana and she just happened to drive her bike into him, late one Saturday night.  So he creates a online character in her name and plays online as a girl, even though he is a guy in real life.

Svetlana is a role playing gamer and is the head of the RPG gaming club at her school.  She is an artist and draws many of the monsters for the game.  She sews and embroiders her clothes and is tall, blonde and beautiful.  Your typical senior hippie weird girl.  She starts falling for Lesh after they share lunch together and he saves her from a family friendly stalker boy lurking in the lunchroom.

Two very different teens from two different socio economic backgrounds tell their story in alternating chapters.  The gaming world is also represented with chapters interspersed throughout the book.  Guy In Real Life is not your typical love story and it is going to be hard for readers to fit Guy In Real Life into a box or a set category or genre because it is unique and genre bending. There's a little bit of mystery, fantasy, GLBTQ, romance and more.  So if you identify with the word, nerd or geek, this might be the perfect book for the nerdish side of you.  Nerds Unite!  Gamers Unite!  Readers Unite!

One of the things I really loved about this book was the music the characters interact with.  Brezenoff introduces the reader to an interesting playlist of tunes that go from Bjork and Iron Maiden to Captain & Tennille and composer Hector Berlioz.  I looked up some of the music and played it.  In fact, Brezenoff should create a playlist so you can listen to all the songs listed in the novel.  That would be cool.  A Novel Playlist??  Steve?

One of the things I admire about Brezenoff's writing is that he is creative.  He is not afraid to write something that no one has tried before and he takes risks.  As readers, we should take risks too and read books outside your comfort zone. Don't you agree?

Nerd alert:  So let's sing - Love Will Keep Us Together by Captain and Tennille because this song is in the best chapter of the book.