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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
Boys Don't Cry
Format: Paperback|Change
Price:£7.42+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 27 October 2016
Right from the very first page I was gripped by this book. Blackman has written it from the points of view of Dante and Adam who are brothers. You experience every emotion and feeling, this is what makes Blackman such a good writer. The main focus of the book is on Dante who is made to deal with a baby aged 17. It takes a different route from the usual single mum scenario. Dante has to adjust his life and forget his plans for the future because he has no choice. This book really shows how Dante comes to terms with this idea and deals with it. The back story is about Adam, Dante's brother, who is battling against the prejudice against homosexuality. This book tackled the very extremes of what gay people are faced with when meeting homophobic people who are ignorant or scared of homosexuality.
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on 9 February 2011
I am slightly ashamed to admit that, despite reading vast amounts if YA books, this is only the third Malorie Blackman book I have read. And I've never read her best known books, the Noughts and Crosses sequence. This is perhaps something I should rectify based on this novel.

We are always hearing about young single mums, still kids themselves, whose boyfriend's do a runner upon witnessing the positive pregnancy test, or after the novelty of a newborn wears off. But what happens when it's the dad left holding the baby after the mum runs off because it's all too much? We rarely hear about that.

That's what this book aims to address and change. And it does it pretty successfully, I think.

Dante never knew his girlfriend was pregnant after their one and only drunken fumble. Melanie just disappeared before reappearing almost two years later on Dante's doorstep with baby Emma in her buggy. And then Melanie disappears again, leaving Emma behind.

I really felt for Dante. His dreams of attending university to study journalism come abruptly crashing down around him. His hard work to achieve four A-stars in his A Levels was somewhat wasted. He doesn't have the resources to put Emma in a private nursery, and council nurseries have huge waiting lists, so if he keeps Emma then university is out. His mother is dead and his father works hard to provide him and his brother, Adam, a decent enough life. One mistake changes all of his dreams. It changes not only his life but his family's too.

Blackman doesn't take the easy option of having Dante immediately love his daughter. He wants to fob her off to someone else as quickly as possible, even going as far as to get a DNA test despite the striking family resemblance. It's realistic and gritty. Dante is full of anger and confusion. Dante is lucky that, despite his disappointment towards him, his father is part of an instant support network, one which helps when needed but is clear that the responsibility is up to Dante. I wasn't entirely sure which way it was going to go: was he going to keep Emma? Give her up for adoption? Or was Melanie going to come back?

I did wonder, throughout reading the novel, if I was more sympathetic towards Dante than I would have been towards Melanie if she was the main character. And that's something I can't answer, if I'm being honest. I'd like to think I was being sympathetic towards the character, rather than his gender.

The story itself is told from the viewpoint of both brothers, the majority from Dante but some, too, from Adam, which worked really well.

Adam had his own, very emotional, subplot. He is gay and not at all ashamed of the fact, even if Dante and their father choose to ignore the truth. He has aspirations of becoming an actor (cliché, I know, but it worked for this character) to the point where he doesn't have a backup plan. I actually think Adam's story, his experience of homophobia and his family's denial regarding his sexuality, was far more powerful than Dante's and if you read the book, you'll understand why. It was harrowing and heartbreaking.

Ultimately, this was a story about family and acceptance. It was a story which made me cry, made me angry and made me laugh. It's a novel that doesn't have all of the answers, and doesn't claim to, but it is a worthwhile read none the less.
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on 19 July 2012
As soon as I saw a book about teenage dads I knew it would be interesting as it makes a change from books\T.V Programs about teen mums. This book shows everyone that teen dads arn't lazy and nappy-phobes (Tehe.) But there are really caring guys out there like Dante and this book shows how hard it is for both mum and dad. But Dante's storyline I found, wasn't the big gripping part of the book. I found the storyline about his brother and the fact that he was gay to be more interesting. It was a stressfull time for Dante's brother and I felt this feeling while reading the book. This book has amazing characters that will stay with you long after the boy's stop crying. Unique with alot of plots that knot together to make this by far, the best book I've read!
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on 19 November 2016
This book was amazing! Probably one of the best by malorie Blackman!
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on 26 February 2017
Very happy with this product.
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on 7 April 2017
This is amazing. I was a little bit worried about the price but this story is worth every penny. It is full of emotion.
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on 6 December 2016
Great thanks
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on 9 April 2015
A great read for about age 11-13. Well written, thoughtful, interesting.
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on 19 January 2012
I love Malorie Blackman, she is a fab writer and this book is no exception! I found it gripping and emotional. I loved how she described the struggle of being a teenager bringing up a baby! A must read :)
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on 22 August 2013
This item is exactly as described. It is very well made from quality materials and looks great. Very pleased with my purchase.
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