"With a plunging reputation and enrollment rate, Saint Michael’s has become a crumbling dumping ground for expelled delinquents and a haven for the stridently religious when incoming freshman Peter Davidek signs up. On his first day, tensions are clearly on the rise as a picked-upon upperclassmen finally snaps, unleashing a violent attack on both the students who tormented him for so long, and the corrupt, petty faculty that let it happen. But within this desperate place, Peter befriends fellow freshmen Noah Stein, a volatile classmate whose face bears the scars of a hard-fighting past, and the beautiful but lonely Lorelei Paskal —so eager to become popular, she makes only enemies."
A coming-of-age tale blending twisted black humor, horror, and nostalgia as three friends battle bullies both at school and home, Brutal Youth is the debut novel of Anthony Breznican, a staff writer at Entertainment Weekly and fellow alum of St. Joe's in Natrona Heights. It has received tremendous early reviews from, among others, Stephen King, Gillian Flynn, and Jason Reitman and was featured on NPR's "All Things Considered" and made iBooks top-10 list of new fiction titles for June.
I had the chance to read an advance copy in the spring, and my review is posted to Amazon and Goodreads. Brutal Youth was released last week, and Anthony is going to be in Pittsburgh for three weeks over the summer, so when I mentioned hosting a Brutal Youth event for N4B, Anthony wanted to participate. So join us at Tana to discuss the book and swap high school horror stories.