Apr 11, 2012

Review | Youth in Revolt by C.D. Payne

Title: Youth in Revolt
Author: C.D. Payne
Series: 1/7
Publication: 03.15.1996 by Crown Publishing Group
Source: Gift
Challenges: Young Adult Reading Challenge
Rating: ★★★★☆


Youth in Revolt is the journals of Nick Twisp, California's most precocious diarist, whose ongoing struggles to make sense out of high school, deal with his divorced parents, and lose his virginity result in his transformation from an unassuming fourteen-year-old to a modern youth in open revolt. As his family splinters, worlds collide, and the police block all routes out of town, Nick must cope with economic deprivation, homelessness, the gulag of the public schools, a competitive type-A father, murderous canines, and an inconvenient hair trigger on his erectile response–all while vying ardently for the affections of the beauteous Sheeni Saunders, teenage goddess and ultimate intellectual goad.

Thoughts: Youth in Revolt was one of those books that had been sitting on my TBR list for years and only happened to pick up because it was randomly chosen for me (read more on that here.) Fortunately for me, Youth in Revolt turned out to be a fun adventure that I couldn't get enough of, with fun and wacky characters that I loved and sometimes loved to hate.

Nick Twisp (who just so happens to hate his name) is a fourteen year old teenage boy who thinks of little else but sex. He is on the search to lose his virginity and along with his friends, they come up with crazy plans on how numerous ways to accomplish this. Nick lives with his mother, and her good-for-not-much boyfriend happens to stay over a lot. When the boyfriend gets in trouble with some sailors, the three hit the road and end up in a trailer park. This is where Nick meets Sheeni, the love of his life. Of course, to win her heart and stay close to her, Nick must be bad, very bad and his hilarious and wild attempts to reach her (and hopefully lose his virginity to her) cause his to cause quite some havoc that land Nick in some pretty huge trouble.

Although very single minded, Nick is an likable kid (but not always) and even though I wanted to smack him on the head every once in a while, he had me grinning most of the book with his witty thoughts. Quite smart for his age, he gets away with a lot and his ideas had me laughing out loud especially when his alter ego, Francois, was involved. His relationships with others were also very eccentric but worked well with the rest of the book. While rather long, there was a lot to get through with the book, and at no point did it ever feel dull. Nick was getting himself into one thing or another and this kept me engaged the entire time.

The author has a marvelous way of keeping the reader wanting to learn more about the characters, which there are many of. I definitely look forward to reading the rest of Nick's escapades in the next books. I definitely recommend Youth in Revolt to older teens and adults (some scenes are just not appropriate for younger audiences, but do offer quite a laugh sometimes) who think they would enjoy a different, ridiculous, humorous and raunchy coming of age story of a fourteen year old boy.

About the author:  Author and showman C.D. Payne was born in Akron, Ohio in 1949. In 1971 he moved to California. During the next 25 years, he held over 50 jobs including newspaper editor, book publisher's assistant, proofreader, trailer park handyman, and catalog writer. Since 2004 he has been the proprietor of the Eyelusion Museum, a mobile discovery museum in a restored and polished 1964 Airstream trailer. His latest mobile sideshow is a 1950s miniature town. It can been seen at the Santa Rosa Handcar Regatta and other events. He is married and lives in Sonoma County.

Buy the book: Amazon

1 comment

  1. Great review as always, Cindy! :) <3 I enjoyed the movie, so I'll be looking into the book.