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Different for Boys

"This honest, empathetic, engaging novella explores complexities around sex, sexuality, friendship, homophobia, and the courage of boys who like boys"

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LoveReading4Kids Says

LoveReading4Kids Says

Authentic, inclusive and refreshingly candid, Patrick Ness’ Different for Boys packs mighty punch as it relates the pitch-perfect story of teenage boys grappling with questions around sex, sexuality, friendship and masculinity, with Tea Bendix’s cool, evocative illustrations enhancing its already-considerable clout. 

Ant is friends with three very different boys – camp and confident Jack, Charlie, who’s a tinderbox of alpha-male confusion, and Freddie, who’s returned to their school after moving away. The boys were inseparable through primary school, but people change, and not everyone handles change well, especially Charlie, who’s outright homophobic.

At the same time, Ant is awash with big questions: “Are there degrees of virginity?” Is he still a virgin? Is virginity different for boys. Is it different again for boys who like boys? In this context, Ant and Charlie’s especially intense, confusing relationship sees them come to blows before Ant comes to some clarity.

Suffused in empathy, and funny with it, Different for Boys is a brilliantly incisive account of how it feels to be a boy who likes boys, battling homophobia while grappling with big questions around sex and relationships. It’s also a fine story of courage and support.

Joanne Owen

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