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Boy Proof [Paperback]

Cecil Castellucci
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

6 Jun 2005
An edgy, unusual story about a loner who finds peace with herself - and friendship. Egg (real name, Victoria) lives with divorced parents - an ageing TV star mum and a special effects wizard dad. Egg has renamed herself after the heroine of her favourite sci-fi movie and emulates her namesake in dress and by shaving her head and colouring her eyebrows. She prides herself on being a longer and certainly has no time for boys. Then she meets Max. Cool, friendly and smart, he likes science fiction too - and he likes Egg. Gradually, Egg realizes that she's not boy proof, and learns to be comfortable being herself. Max and Victoria end up doing different things and though they don't have a romantic relationship right away, they become good friends. An exceptional novel for older readers by a new talent to the Walker Books fiction list.

Product details

  • Paperback: 206 pages
  • Publisher: Walker Books Ltd (6 Jun 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184428154X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844281541
  • Product Dimensions: 19.4 x 13 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 59,823 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

About the Author

Cecil Castellucci grew up in New York and studied theatre and film in Paris, Los Angeles and Montreal. She performs and composes music (under the name Cecil Seaskull), writes plays and even works for MTV!

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of a kind 13 July 2005
I picked up this book in my local library, looking for an unusual book, and i found one!!!
This is one of the best books i have read in a while, and i throughly enjoyed reading it. It follows the life of a girl who likes to be known by the name of "Egg" after a sci-fi character.
Her life is fine until it is turned upside down when a guy called Max enters her life.
This is a moving book, and really made me look again at how i see the world.
The moral of this book is to be yourself, the best advice that anyone could give.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Courtesy of Teens Read Too 27 Nov 2006
By TeensReadToo TOP 500 REVIEWER
Victoria "Egg" Jurgen is a loner and she likes it that way. Dressed in her long white cloak, with a shaved head and drawn-in eyebrows, she doesn't talk to people and doesn't want people to talk to her. Her look and attitude cause her to be "boy proof," according to her mother. Egg's unique style is fashioned after her favorite character from the movie Terminal Earth, which she has seen multiple times and as many as four times in one day. Egg refers to herself as a cinephile. She loves the film industry, especially the Sci-Fi world.

Egg considers herself the smartest person at her school and feels Valedictorian is pretty much in the bag. That is until Max shows up in her AP classes. Egg's first impression of Max is that he stinks, literally. The only thing she likes about him at all is his t-shirt that has the name of one of her favorite comic books on it. Max seems to be everywhere. He is a wonderful artist and joins the school's newspaper where Egg acts as a photo journalist. Getting to know Max turns out to be a life-changing experience for Egg.

As senior year progresses, Egg becomes more involved in activities that put her in contact with people. She learns what it means to be a friend and how important it is to have them in your life. She realizes that people aren't always as they seem and that being perfect isn't necessary for happiness. Egg learns a lot in one year's time; even how to leave Egg behind and become simply Victoria.

Cecil Castellucci has written a thoughtful story about the sensitive time in every young adult's life - self-discovery. Written in first person, this novel launches you into Egg's world and leaves you feeling as though you are experiencing life through her eyes. The reader will sympathize with the ups and downs of the typical teenage angst that Victoria goes through in order to, once and for all, decide what it really takes for her to be happy.

Reviewed by: Karin Perry
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Underated and awesome 27 May 2008
Boy Proof is Castellucci's most ununsal book, because the character is not the usual angst-ridden long haired teenager, but a shaven-headed sci-fi geek with a smart mouth and intelligence that isolates her from everyone else. I mostly enjoyed this because Egg is so edgy and amusing, she is a fun character--I hope Castellucci revisits her one day. :D
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5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible story and series 30 Jun 2010
By Steven R. McEvoy TOP 1000 REVIEWER
I read this book in two sittings. I could not put it down and already have plans to reread it. What blew me away most was that after reading it, I discovered it was Castellucci's first published novel. The level of skill and insight in this debut novel truly astounds me. Often, authors I enjoy - even those I consider gifted writers - disappoint me in some of their writing and usually in their earlier stuff. I have now read all of Castellucci's novels, graphic novels and some short fiction and I think it is all excellent. But Boy Proof is my new favorite.

This is the story of a girl named Egg. She named herself that after her favorite character from a Science Fiction movie, Terminal Earth. She believes she has life all figured out and she prefers not to have to interact with other people, or if she does, only on her terms. She has a shaved head, piercings and painted- on eyebrows. She is cold and frosty and keeps people at a distance. Her mother came up with the term but she likes it and owns it - she has made herself 'boy proof'. But then Max Carter shows up at her school, and her life is turned upside down.

The story captures some of the angst of being alone in a crowd, of putting on a front so as not to be vulnerable, and open to being hurt. It also is a story of self-discovery, of finding your place in the world, finding out who you are and what you want to do with your life. It is the first book in Cecil Castellucci's 'LA Trilogy'. Each of the three books explores a different element of life in and around Los Angeles, one focusing on movies and film, one on science and one on music, each set in and around a different neighborhood in the city. This is an amazing book and would make a great movie. But as a piece of the whole, in the trilogy it is even better. So read it and find out what Egg discovers about herself, and about life.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars  32 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wave your geek flag high 14 May 2006
By Alan Gratz - Published on
Here, finally, is a book for weird and nerdy girls: girls who like sci-fi, cut their hair short, and take pride in their intelligence and academic success. Protagonist Victoria - who calls herself "Egg" after a Matrix-like movie character - is just a little too weird though, pushing away even those she might actually call friends. Where some weird girls wave geek flags, Egg weilds a geek lightsaber.

Enter the cool-as-hell new boy at school. He's artsy, smart, well-connected, and wears a Hellblazer t-shirt. He speaks truth, draws insightful editorial cartoons, studies his fellow students, and makes Egg oddly jealous when he starts dating a cuter, less-nerdy girl. How has she let someone - and a boy of all things - get under her skin?

As Yoda once said, "Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering," and sure enough, Egg's angst manages to repel the very last of the people who care about her. And just as Victoria, nee Egg, begins to seek their companionship, too. It all resolves rather nicely, though: in a book about accepting your inner geek, it's nice that the conclusion doesn't involve Egg capitulating - just compromising. A little.

Boy Proof is good stuff, and sure to be enjoyed by girls who don't have a pink shirt in their closet - unless it's a pink Mrs. Picard shirt from FeNerd.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Book You Won't Stop Thinking About. 16 Mar 2005
By Mette Ivie Harrison - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I just finished Boy Proof. It was such fun to read and I have to say I was impressed at the ending. I found myself thinking a lot about someone I knew in high school at the beginning of the story, and then more and more about myself and about high school in general and how people try or refuse to try to fit in. I also liked that Victoria, too, needed to find herself. I liked that her parents were nice people, neither of them villains. It seems like that happens a lot in fiction these days. And Max's comment about finding it easy to make friends, but not necessarily keep them was very intriguing. He was such a great character! So alive that I can't forget about him even now that the book is closed.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A refreshingly unique and unforgettable character 13 April 2007
By Jennifer Robinson - Published on
Boy Proof is the story of high school senior Victoria Jurgen, who prefers to be called "Egg." Victoria/Egg is an unabashed geek, and self-selected social outcast. She dresses in a long white cloak and shaves her head, in homage to her favorite movie character, Egg from the science fiction adventure Terminal Earth. She sits by herself at lunchtime and reads. Her only school participation is in the Science Fiction club and as the photographer for the school paper. She's very bright, and accustomed to doing well in school, with a particular interest in World History, but she's not very good with people.

Egg considers herself "Boy Proof". She deliberately makes herself unattractive, wearing baggy clothing and no make-up, and genuinely believes herself to be invisible. Imagine her surprise when a new student, the handsome and popular Max Carter, starts to pay attention to her. She resists his friendship, but is eventually drawn in by the things that they have in common. The two soon share a bond, but things are complicated by Max's decision to date another, more conventional, girl.

I love Egg. She's smart, talented, and funny, but she's also insecure, and sometimes downright mean to other people. I cringed for her at times, and wanted to scold her at others (she's particularly harsh to a perfectly nice girl from the Science Fiction club who just wants to be her friend, and to her mother). But through it all, I identified with her, and wanted her to succeed.

Egg is refreshingly unique, and impossible to forget. I especially like the fact that she's not conventional, and not afraid to go her own way, despite the pressures of high school. I think that anyone who has ever felt that sense of otherness while in school will be able to relate to Egg on one level or another. I was sorry to see the book end, because I would have liked to spend more time with Egg (though Castellucci certainly wraps things up in a satisfying manner). Highly recommended for kids 13 and up, especially girls and/or sci-fi buffs.

This book review was originally published on my blog, Jen Robinson's Book Page, on April 11, 2007.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thought-provoking novel about struggles of self-limitations 8 Jun 2005
By Teen Reads - Published on
A girl who calls herself Egg, wears a homemade cloak to school everyday, and obsesses over sci-fi movies, is somebody who I wouldn't expect to enjoy spending time with. Yet Egg's original take on the world, combined with the emotional journey she undergoes, makes BOY PROOF a fun and thought-provoking novel.

This is a character-driven book, centering on the first-person narrator. Egg (aka Victoria Jurgen) has trouble relating to people. Her weird trappings serve to shelter her from the difficulties and heartbreak that go along with relationships. Although she gets along well with her father, a mask maker and animatronic specialist, she lives with her mother, a former actress who Egg seems to have no respect for. Egg belongs to the sci-fi club at school, but she remains aloof from the other members and takes care not to call them friends. Her personal life consists of photography, drawing, and dreaming about the stars of her favorite movie, Terminal Earth. She seems to like it that way.

Until Max Carter moves to town. Immediately intrigued by Egg, he offers her friendship and --- possibly --- something more. Egg is attracted. Max shares so many of her interests, and she stumbles across him in the most unlikely places. Unsure how to react, however, she rebuffs him, and her moment to create a friendship seems lost. A series of unrelated events eventually inspires Egg to realize that unless she makes some changes, she's looking at a lonely future.

Funny and creative, Egg is impossible not to like. The first-person narration is very successful here, letting the reader compare how others view Egg --- unfriendly and snobbish --- versus how she really is inside, a mass of worry and doubt. Although most of the book follows Egg's goals and dreams, at least one minor character emerges as a person in her own right, rather than just a depiction of how Egg views her. There are no terrible secrets in Egg's past, and I found the story better for that --- many kids are lonely and alienated just because they are, and Egg speaks well to the ways in which an imaginative teenager can find that her interests make her feel lost rather than bonding with others.

Even those who aren't sci-fi fans should enjoy this book; the sci-fi aspect comes across as a vital part of Egg's personality rather than an author indulging her own interest. Max didn't work as well for me, however. Complete with glamorous past, he seemed too perfect --- more like the friend or boyfriend Egg would have imagined than a real person. I would have liked to have seen a few flaws. And the book's ending wrapped things up a bit too neatly for my taste.

These are minor problems, however. For readers who like books about relationships and people transcending their own limitations as they reach out to others, BOY PROOF is a great read.

--- Reviewed by Paula Jolin
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant 2 Mar 2005
A Kid's Review - Published on
Note: I may have accidentally posted this two times due to my lack of intellegence.

I'm a big reader,and book after book I would read directed toward preteens would be a girl trying to fit in normally to accept her. This book however was a girl totally accepted herself. This book makes you think. A LOT.

Egg, the main charecter, is an incredibly intellegent girl. She gets perfect grades and really that's all that's important to her. This nerd is totally obsessed with her favorite movie star Egg. She thinks she knows everything, and everything is pretty perfect for her too. Though the problem is she has never let anyone love her.


To popular girls, geeky girls, boyish girls, girls that have ever felt out of place. Not sure weather to get it? GET IT.
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