Author: Stephen Metcalfe
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Publication Date: March 2015
Genre: Young Adult Fiction/Contemporary
Series or Stand Alone: Stand Alone
Synopsis can be found here.
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Billy Kinsey has stayed away from the world ever since his twin sister Dorie died. But this year, his life changes. Twom is an outlaw that pushes Billy towards friendship and Gretchen is a girl who pushes Billy towards love. Together, Billy will have to make tough choices that will impact the rest of his life.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I was offered this book for review. I am a big fan of St. Martin’s Press, their books usually drawing me in so I was happy to read this for review, even if I wasn’t sure what it was about. Maybe that was the best part of all. Not knowing left me with no expectations and no idea on what was going to happen. I was just a passenger along for the ride.
The Tragic Age is a coming of age novel that captivates the reader from the beginning. It’s hard to tell what I like most about the book. Is it Billy Kinsey, the incredibly observant and intelligent, suspicious and tragic narrator? His voice is so strong, I felt like I was listening to him talk over a cup of coffee. I loved how his mind worked, not always linearly, sometimes veering off to topics that enhanced the story and added dark humor. Is it the story of a group of teens, looking for trouble, for love, excitement, for everything in the wrong places? Is it the warm story of first romantic love and finding that one person, your best friend, who you would go into battle with?
It’s all of those things.
I can’t recommend The Tragic Age enough. It had me reading slowly, late into the night. I was reading whenever I had even ten minutes. I didn’t want to put it down. Metcalfe creates a teenage boy who is full of vulnerability, vinegar and sweetness. And a story that I would recommend to any YA or Adult reader. Did I mention it was hilarious as well? Billy’s voice rings a bitter and heart squeezing truthfulness that only a teenager can admit.
I’m still thinking about it. And when I can read it again.
Rating 9 Ridiculously Awesome like Cookies and Ice Cream