Monday, May 19, 2014

DNF Book Review: Guy in Real Life by Steve Brezenoff

At 41% (about 164 pages) I gave up on Guy in Real Life. Let me tell you why.

There are pages and pages of descriptions of the characters playing MMOs (Massively Multiplayer Online Games -- like World of Warcraft.) To me, at least so far, these episodes did nothing to advance the plot of Guy in Real Life whatsoever.

In the blurb the author is compared to Rainbow Rowell and John Green, and I can understand the comparison, but don't let that cause your expectations to be too high. The characters are colorful and interesting. Lesh gets drunk one night, and on his way home he runs into Svetlana, who is on her bicycle. She crashes and in the process one of her prized possessions, a sketchbook, ends up in a puddle. Lesh's best friend, Greg finally convinces him to create a persona and pay his favorite MMO with him. Greg doesn't know that Lesh has become obsessed with the game too, but he's using another character he created. An elf named Svvetlana. And this is who we spend pages and pages with -- the elf Svvetlana in the MMO.

It turns out Lesh and Svetlana go to the same school and they begin to spend lunches together. There are other nuances to the story and characters that make it interesting. Their quirkiness gave me a bit of an Eleanor & Park vibe. But...unless you are interested in MMOs, there's a lot of extra material here that I found overwhelming. It seemed nothing much was happening in the "real" story. I don't really know what was happening in the MMO, because I skipped over most of that.

I've read that there is a good twist at the end of the book, and I really wanted to get there. I just couldn't sift through what seemed to me to be filler in an already long (400 page) book. If those parts end up being important, somebody let me know and maybe I'll give it another go.

Published by Balzer + Bray, May 27, 2014
eARC obtained from Edelweiss
164 of 400 pages

Rating: DNF

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  1. I like the concept and it's interesting that the reader spends so much time with the elf...not sure I'd love it (though I am a bit of a gamer). Boo on the DNF! Hope your next read is better.

  2. Hmm, I heard so many good things about this one, but I'm not into the gamer scene at all so sounds like I will be disappointed as well. But I am curious about that twist! Maybe I'll pick this up as an audiobook if it's available. Too bad this couldn't keep your interest!


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