Monday, 1 June 2009

Sprout by Dale Peck

From Amazon: When Sprout and his father move from Long Island to the midst of rural Kansas after the death of his mother, he is sure he will find no friends, no love, no beauty. But friends find him, the strangeness of the landscape fascinates him, and when love shows up in an unexpected place, Sprout realises that Kansas is not quite as empty as he thought it was going to be.

Sprout is a fantastic character, and I thoroughly enjoyed being in his head. He's kooky and intelligent, and possesses a maturity not usually seen in a 16-year-old. Through essays written for a school competition, Sprout delves into his life and relationships, and takes us along for the ride.

Sprout's sexuality isn't the be all and end all of this book, it's just a small part of an extremely complex character. Hiding behind his green hair and less than perfect home life, Sprout sets out to fit in within the walls of a school where he feels he doesn't really belong. He has friends, yes, but no-one besides Ruthie really gets him, until he meets Ty.

I found Sprout's relationship with Ty quite strange at first, but I soon came to love it. It's an eye-opener for both characters, and helps them to realise there is always a silver lining to every situation. It's a nice change to have a male narrator, especially one as open and honest as Sprout. I liked his observations and attitude to life, and how he dealt with the obstacles he faced.

Sprout is a coming of age story about a boy who thought life had nothing to offer him. It's a positive portrayal of homosexuality, and approaches the subject realistically. I can't wait to see what Dale Peck writes next, and I hope we'll see more of Sprout in the future. He's definitely worth reading about, and I hope his story can encourage people to be themselves, and not hide behind an appearance or persona.

15 comments:

So Many Books, So Little Time said...

This sounds really good and I love the cover.

Emily said...

I think the cover would be much better without the green head. The hair just makes me think of a leprachaun. lol

Chicklish said...

I loved this book. Great review, and I totally agree with you!

Kate said...

This sounds like a really good read. The cover is wicked. Great review!

Steph Su said...

I'm in the midst of writing my review for this book right now, and I loved reading your review! I'm so glad we agree on how incredible this book is!

Shooting Stars Mag said...

Nice review. I should be reading this soon, and I'm stoked. It looks amazing.

-Lauren

cupcakewitch said...

This sounds interesting. I have been seeing the cover around, but this is the first review I have read.

Maggie said...

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a flight of minds said...

This book sounds so good! I really want to read it eventually. It's always interesting to read of a male's point of view, and Sprout being gay is a plus. Great review. :)

- Alex

Thao said...

You and Steph reviewed the same book today and both loved it. I have to check this book out, really have to.

Amy said...

That sounds really good and the cover is cool.

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DEWHURST TOULSON said...

He has friends, yes, but no-one besides Ruthie really gets him, until he meets Ty.
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