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Self-Portraits

   (1 review)

In one short day, sixteen-year-old Richard has his entire world turned upside down. His coming out attempt backfires, his parents announce they're divorcing, and his secret boyfriend wants time apart. At least things can't get any worse ... right?

There is no graphic or sexual content whatsoever. There is some use of swearing in two characters' dialogue (f-word and s-word only).

Copyright © 2019 Richie Tennyson; All Rights Reserved.

Story Recommendations (5 members)

  • Action Packed 0
  • Addictive/Pacing 3
  • Characters 4
  • Chills 0
  • Cliffhanger 0
  • Compelling 1
  • Feel-Good 3
  • Humor 2
  • Smoldering 1
  • Tearjerker 1
  • Unique 5
  • World Building 1

  • Like 5
  • Love 5
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Talo Segura

   1 of 1 member found this review helpful 1 / 1 member

If one person captures the essence of this book it must be Richard's Art teacher, Mrs Hansen. “You’re showing me what you looked at, not what you saw.” She tells him. “Everything’s full of anger and emotion,” Mrs Hansen tells him, when he says there is no anger and emotion in his garden. “Paint your Scream.” She insists, but he doesn't get it.

There are characters a plenty and they all play their part in our protagonist's life. They annoy him, surprise him, cheat him, make promises they never keep, and he believes he is responsible for everything. He forgives his best friend Nicholas, he excuses everyone, he hides from himself fearing the consequences of coming out. What he fails to realise is everything is about him, but about him discovering himself, something he is loathe to do.

The author captures the emotional turmoil and the inconsideration of teenagers overwhelmingly self-occupied. "I try to think of a way to ask my mother how she is. I realise that in all my sixteen years, I’ve never asked her that very basic question." Richard has this realisation in the opening chapter, other recognitions about life and people should follow, but whilst obvious to the reader, they float past Richard like water in a river, when something gets in the way, he explains it away and keeps everything flowing smoothly. Even if it's killing him inside, he can't see it.

Frustrated, angry, surprised, sad, and a hundred other emotions are thrust on Richard and in equal measure on the reader. Such is the skill of the author, that we the reader, neither know whether to praise him or curse him as we are drawn inexorably into hoping things are resolved and turn out well. The book is a real gem and a captivating read, you should not ignore it.

Response from the author:

Thank you for this splendid review - I'm genuinely touched by your comments and insights into the story :D

  • Love 1
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