Book Reviews of All American Boy

All American Boy
All American Boy
Author: William J. Mann
ISBN-13: 9780758203281
ISBN-10: 0758203284
Publication Date: 5/3/2005
Pages: 339
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.

3.7 stars, based on 7 ratings
Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

5 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed All American Boy on
Helpful Score: 2
The story deals with many issues of past pain and is extremely well told. I found the style interesting and captivating. Mann explores the many regrets that most of us hold onto over what we always should have done better or possibly not at all. Life is full of decisions that in retrospect should have been avoided. The issues of coming to terms with your sexuality and what are you truly responsibile for as you grow up, are also explored in this sometimes painful story of Wally's life. I recommend this story to all.
reviewed All American Boy on + 18 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
The book has a lot of likeable characters. It also deals with child molestation in a rather interesting way. If a teen actively seeks sex from an adult and has an ongoing loving relationship is this wrong. This is one of the issues the author deals with in an open, unapologetic way.
reviewed All American Boy on + 9 more book reviews
Not a book for those who need definitive answers. To the contrary, the book really explores the space between what we believe or remember, and what is the truth. Is the truth out there? The main character, Walter, is similar to Jeff in Mann's other book (The Men From The Boys) in that he often acts like a jerk but still seems to be surrounded by people who love and support him. Walter in particular was blessed by mentors in his small town upbringing, from stage actress Josephine Leopold to the local transgendered woman Miss Aletha, not to mention Zandy his first lover, the real reason he returns home for a visit. Also like TMFTB the book has an experimental narrative form, usually written in present tense. It was most interesting around the middle when the vampires showed up. (No, that's not a joke!)
reviewed All American Boy on + 51 more book reviews
Well-written even if predictable. The anguish of self-discovery is muted here, but the encounters are genuine.
reviewed All American Boy on + 170 more book reviews
Awkward start but makes sense in the end.

This is a story about a son and his mother. We are âinsideâ their heads as they have flashback to other times, and frankly it's confusing, but in the end it's a story about growing up, for both the son and the mother, and connections are made that tie the whole thing together.

It was a really difficult read in that I didn't care too much for either the son or the mother, they both seemed dreadful people that made a lot of bad decision. I'd read a couple of pages, then set the book aside for another time, repeating often. Somewhere around page ~200 â it started being a more interesting book.

Again, once I completed the book, I found enough interest to make the whole thing worthwhile, but the first 2/3rds was a slog

It contains several triggers: underage sex, mental illness, runaway children and child abandonment. It may or may not include a murder; it's a mystery if it actually happened, but plays a major role. Acts occur âoff screenâ in the characters past and are brought up from time to time: Suicide of the boy's father and the mothers husband, parental violence directed at children.

Would you come home, Walter? Please?" With these desperate words from the mysterious, distant mother he hasn't seen in ten years, Wally Day finds his carefully constructed world falling in on itself. For years, the handsome actor has made denial his own particular art form. But now, faced with this sudden intrusion from his past, Wally must confront the reasons he left his hometown of Brown's Mill in a cloud of anger, shame, and guilt. But Wally isn't the only one who's confronting ghosts. His mother Regina had dreams too once, dreams corrupted by fate and circumstance. With her own world unraveling, with strange, confusing memories of a murder that may or may not have occurred, she turns to the son she barely knows for help. As Wally unravels the dark side of his all-American family, he has a chance to make peace with the boy he was in order to become the man he needs to be. He is once more the 14-year-old living at Miss Aletha's house on the wrong side of town, the music of "Saturday Night Fever providing the charged, erotic soundtrack to his life. The world was on the exuberant edge of change in those days, and Wally relives the thrill of discovery, the promise of forbidden sex--"and the mistake that cost him everything.