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Maybe by Brent Runyon


by Brent Runyon

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Not great, not terrible. An unlikable narrator avoids talking about his brother, but the Big Reveal of what happened to the brother is pretty obvious from the beginning. Whether it's supposed to be or not, I don't know, but in the end there were no big (or little, even) surprises, and a few situations left at loose ends--nothing crucial to the story, but they still felt like outlines instead of fully-developed plot points. ( )
  librarybrandy | Mar 31, 2013 |
I didn't like it because there were a lot of things that happened that weren't explained thoroghly, and left you wondering things like "What happened to her?" (and) "What did he ever end up doing there?" Q3P3 AHS/Madi B.

I would tell them that it is sad at the beginning but it does get funny. I would say if they want a good story to read this book. Q3P4 AHS/ Jenna G
  edspicer | Dec 2, 2011 |
This book was a stumble upon at a Border's close-out sale and perhaps the best stumble I've ever made. In three syllables - Ah-May-Zing!

The narrator is a BOY. And it's not done in those hokey alternating passages where one can barely determine there's been a shift of character except now all of a sudden you're in someone else's head but with the same voice. Oy vey doesn't that bug others?! Nope this is a male narrator and it's RAW.

And often I was incredulous. Really, guys. Do you really think about sex on the first date?

Brian (said dude who thinks about sex and mostly acts like a punk but every now and again shows us that he's just angsty) is sixteen and is dealing with the loss of his older brother. Oh yeah, and he's at a new school.

The story isn't any different than other coming of age tales (yes, I did just use that term) but rather it's the PRESENTATION. Brian takes us through his day to day antics and thoughts, often random and fragmented and selfish. There's not really a beginning or an ending and there's not much of an AHA moment, although he does have a necessary breakdown.

It's just REAL. It's the REALIST teen book I've read in quite some time.

(Also, I don't think that this book has been read enough. I couldn't find anything out there. #shame) ( )
  readingthruthenight | Oct 9, 2011 |
True to life. What high school is really like. How teenage boys really think. What people really do. It was real and honest and I loved it. ( )
  emma_mc | May 8, 2010 |
Reviewed by Dianna Geers for TeensReadToo.com

In MAYBE by Brent Runyon, Brian's unpredictable behaviors make it hard to know him at first. In fact, I disliked Brian so much in the beginning and didn't know if I wanted to continue reading the book. He didn't share any deep thoughts and tried to cop cheap feels on girls at his new school. Even Brian admitted that he was a pervert. And an a**hole. At least we agreed on something.

So I decided to give him a chance. And I'm very glad I did.

Brian began the book being p.o.'d about having to move to a new town and go to a new high school. As Brian left his old house he ripped a sign off of his brother's bedroom door. It was a sign his brother had made in shop class. He "just wants to have something." I didn't know what that "something" was, but figured he wanted a part of his brother with him. Yet when Brian registered for classes at his new school he had to decide between chorus and shop. His brother took shop, so Brian picked chorus.

As Brian began to get comfortable at school, he made friends with a group of students involved in theater. Thespians. He made guy friends, had a few girlfriends, but seemed to only think about how he could get laid. Or he thought about his brother. Brian struggled between feelings of anger towards his brother, fondness, and terrible longing for him.

Throughout most of the book Brian had a difficult time showing people anything real about him. His parents were the same way. Neither Brian nor his parents ever said much. They sat through silent meals, found reasons to leave the room when others joined them. And his brother continued to not be around.

However, as Brian got closer to people, he began to let them into his heart.

But only a little.

And when Brian allowed himself to think about real feelings, he wondered if maybe he would feel better if he actually talked about what bothered him. What no one in his family would say.


Maybe he could let a person get close to him.


MAYBE is a heart-wrenching book for anyone who has ever had feelings bottled up inside. It's for anyone who has been confused, sad, hurt, and angry all at the same time. If you have ever been reluctant to let someone close to you because they may hurt you or leave you, then you will know exactly why Brian is hurting. You'll ache for his emptiness and celebrate his attempts to reach out. ( )
  GeniusJen | Oct 12, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0375835431, Hardcover)

Maybe everything will be different here. Maybe I should drive away and never come back. Maybe my brother didn't mean to. Maybe my brother was right. Maybe I can get someone to have sex with me. Maybe no one will ever love me. Maybe I should be an actor. Maybe I shouldn't pretend to be deaf.

Maybe if I mouth the words no one will know I'm not singing. But maybe someone, somehow, will hear me anyway.

Brent Runyon offers a raw, wrenching novel of a boy on the edge. It's a powerful story about love and loss and death and anger and the near impossibility for a sixteen-year-old boy to both understand how he feels and to make himself heard.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:47 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Sixteen-year-old Brian struggles with life at a new school, his sexual desires, and his unresolved feelings about the loss of his older brother.

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