The Great American Whatever by Tim Federle Review

gawThe Great American Whatever by Tim Federle
Published: March 29th 2016 by Simon & Schuster
Source: purchased

Quinn Roberts is a sixteen-year-old smart aleck and Hollywood hopeful whose only worry used to be writing convincing dialogue for the movies he made with his sister Annabeth. Of course, that was all before—before Quinn stopped going to school, before his mom started sleeping on the sofa…and before Annabeth was killed in a car accident.

Enter Geoff, Quinn’s best friend who insists it’s time that Quinn came out—at least from hibernation. One haircut later, Geoff drags Quinn to his first college party, where instead of nursing his pain, he meets a guy—a hot one—and falls hard. What follows is an upside-down week in which Quinn begins imagining his future as a screenplay that might actually have a happily-ever-after ending—if, that is, he can finally step back into the starring role of his own life story.

Confession time. I picked this gorgeous book up purely based on cover lust. I’m a huge movie nerd, I mean who isn’t? But I also can appreciate a good looking marquee. I do look out my bedroom window everyday and see one, after all 😉


In reality though, I’m happy I went with my shallow heart on this one, because it was quite a story!

I love the blurb on the top that says “A Holden Caulfield for a new generation” because I got that exact vibe from Quinn; and I didn’t even see that blurb until literally right now while I was staring at this picture, once again, admiring the cover. I don’t know how I missed it before, but I’m kind of glad I did because it just proves how right it is! Fun fact: Holden Caulfield is my favorite literary character in the history of books, so I don’t mess around when comparing characters to him. There were moments where I absolutely adored Quinn and I wanted to give him the biggest hug, and then there were times where I wanted to boop his nose and tell him to stop being a total butt. All the characters in this story are great in their own way, it was easy to get attached.

I loved the characters, loved the dialogue, and adored the occasional scene written in screenplay format. I liked being inside Quinn’s head and following him on his journey to deal with the death of his sister, the loss of his father, coming out to his best friend as gay, his first love interest, and finally admitting that he is in fact, sad. For the most part I really loved this book, there were some slower moments that I could’ve lived without (for those who’ve read it I’ll just say: Ricky Devlin) but I can respect that they were important moments to Quinn.

I’m going to push this book on all or the future screen writers in my life, which is like… two, but still. I think they’ll get the same enjoyment out of it that I did, and maybe they’ll learn something about themselves! I gave this book a 4.5 out of 5, but I know for a lot of people this will be a full 5 star read.

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