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XLis an exploration of the phrase “be careful what you wish for; you might just get it.” The main character is Will, a tiny teenage boy on the cusp of his sixteenth birthday. He is facing conflict with his best friend/step-brother, Drew. Will adores Drew, but he covets Drew’s height and high school athleticism. It is apparent from the beginning of the story that everything Will perceives and feels in his life is colored by the fact that he is extremely short. His always dreaded birthday proves especially traumatic this year, and that is when the story begins to grow, no pun intended.

The book follows Will as he gets precisely what he wants, but Will eventually realizes that what he wants may not be what he needs.

Will’s experience working in Lowland’s gorilla exhibit is hilarious. The gorillas’ dynamics mirror Will and the teenagers at his high school, creating a poignant metaphor as you follow along with Will’s travails.

Though marketed toward young adult readers, readers of all ages can identify with Will’s growing pains. The author develops universal themes like learning from past mistakes and re-prioritizing values when life changes without warning.

Reviewed By:

Author Scott Brown
Star Count /5
Format Hard
Page Count 320 pages
Publisher Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publish Date 26-Mar-2019
ISBN 9781524766245
Bookshop.org Buy this Book
Issue August 2019
Category Young Adult


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