Symptoms of Being Human by Jeff Garvin

A 60 Second Review by Anne Brees

★★★★★   (4.50)
Genre – Young Adult Contemporary LGBT+

Summary –The first thing you’re going to want to know about me is: Am I a boy, or am I a girl?
Riley Cavanaugh is many things: Punk rock. Snarky. Rebellious. And gender
fluid. Some days Riley identifies as a boy, and others as a girl. The thing is…Riley isn’t exactly out yet. And between starting a new school and having a congressman father running for reelection in uber-conservative Orange County, the pressure—media and otherwise—is building up in Riley’s so-called “normal” life.
On the advice of a therapist, Riley starts an anonymous blog to vent those pent-up feelings and tell the truth of what it’s REALLY like to be a gender fluid teenager. But just as Riley’s starting to settle in at school—even developing feelings for a mysterious outcast—the blog goes viral, and an unnamed commenter discovers Riley’s real identity, threatening exposure. Riley must make a choice: walk away from what the blog has created—a lifeline, new friends, a cause to believe in—or stand up, come out, and risk everything.
(Summary from Goodreads)

Initial Thoughts – I started paging through this book and I was immediately caught. The plot, the style, the characters, everything is entrancing.
Plot – ★★★★☆ This book is very informative. Which is fantastic, because it’s a subject that most people have little understanding about and need to understand. However, I felt like sometimes the explaining got in the way of the plot.
Characters – ★★★★★ All of these characters are perfect. Riley is honest and witty and completely perfect for explaining the misunderstandings and the hoaxes around being gender fluid.
Story world – ★★★★☆ The story world doesn’t receive a lot of attention in this book, because it’s not super important to the plot. However, I think that some of the places frequently visited could have used a little more description.
Style – ★★★★★ Garvin’s sarcastic, yet intelligent style makes this book impossible to put down, easy to relate to, and understand.
Closing Thoughts – Everyone has to read this book. It’s time we start understanding other people around us. And what better way than through reading?
Recommendation – Recommended for those wanting a sarcastic read and to understand more about the LGBT+ community.

(summary and cover from Good Reads)


2 thoughts on “Symptoms of Being Human by Jeff Garvin

  1. Reg @ She Latitude says:

    So glad you enjoyed this book! I gave it four stars and really liked it too – it’s informative but in an easy-to-read kind of way, the characters are likeable, and the protagonist, especially, is just super relatable in my opinion.


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