Title: F#@! Bomb
Author: Naomi Rabinowitz
Genres: New Adult, LGBT
Publication Date: March 30th 2015
My Rating: ★★★★
Fatty. Freak. Friendless. Failure. Sadie Abramowitz is used to being alone. The morbidly obese college freshman literally doesn’t fit in anywhere and was constantly the butt of jokes in high school.
So far, life at Cunningham University isn’t much better. Her roommate only communicates in grunts while Sadie’s “dream job” at the school paper has her interviewing her fellow students with questions that practically invite them to insult her.
Things change when she’s assigned a story on Griffin Greenberg, the freshman track star who was one of Sadie’s high school bullies. At first, she’s reluctant to work with the gorgeous Griffin, but soon discovers that he’s not such a bad guy. Plus, he’s been keeping a secret: he’s gay.
As their friendship grows, Griffin challenges Sadie to do something she never thought possible: train for a marathon. Meanwhile, she supports him as he slowly comes to terms with his sexuality. Together, they help each other survive their first year of college – and also learn how to stand strong on their own.
This book was a breath of fresh air! It was authentic and so realistic.
Sadie Abromowitz is a freshman with weight issues and just like in reality, obesity leads to bullying and endless teasing. Such is the world we live in. When she is offered a chance to interview Griffin, one of the guys who made high school life insufferable, she doesn’t exactly hop on it but still sees it as a chance to move on from her “Roving Reporter” status. The last thing she expects is to find out that he’s not such a horrible guy. One night Sadie goes to Griffin’s family dinner at his request and is shocked to find out that he hasn’t exactly been forthcoming about his sexuality. From then on they become good friends and help each other out with their respective problems. They make a deal where Sadie trains with Griffin for a marathon and in exchange he agrees to come out. Thanks to their newfound friendship, Sadie is introduced to a whole new group of friends. Life seems to be looking up for Sadie and Griffin. But it can’t possibly be a walk in the park, can it?
Sadie was a likeable character. She was witty, smart, creative and tried her best to be non-judgemental. She was perfectly cool with other people being different but not many extended the same courtesy to her. She was a bit of a pushover in the beginning, she didn’t do much to stop the bullying. The worst part was she lived with the torments for such a long time that it was a norm for her. She acted like it never got to her but it did much more than she cared to admit. I’d say her saving grace was Griffin, he urged her to stand up to the bullies and change her life for the better. Sadie is not without her flaws though, like most teenagers she tended to whine and put the blame on others but hey, that’s all part of growing up. Her reaction to suddenly having a whole gang of friends was completely realistic and believable. She did meet a guy, Javier, whom I thought was pretentious and rather plain. I can’t tell you guys where that relationship went, but it was more than satisfying. In my opinion, Sadie accomplished a lot in that short period of time.
Griffin is Sadie’s high school bully turned best friend. He really regretted the way he and his friends treated Sadie in high school. Even though he didn’t call her names and all but he still felt bad about being present and not standing up for her. Griffin had a lot on his plate, he was a local sports star, one of the best runners in his University and gay. He actually found out about his sexuality in high school but tried to hide it by dating and flirting with girls. The only person he came out to was his -then- best friend, Mike. But they never talked about him being gay, according to Griffin they talked about everything else but that. Then, Sadie came along, she helped him come to terms with his sexuality and was there every step of the way. Just like in reality, he had to deal with homophobic teammates, bullies and coming out to his parents. Which is easier said than done but he had supportive friends who loved him.
Sadie and Griffin’s friendship is one I aspire to have. They fight but they make up. They constantly push each other but you know they mean well. No matter what they’re always there for each other.
I learned quite a few life lessons from this book. The first one being as hard as we try not to judge others, we still do, so try harder and always think how others might judge you in return. Second, take control of your life, parents, friends cannot make your decisions for you all they can do is attempt to take control. In the end, you have to live with the consequences, not them. You hold your life in the palm of your hand, make it count.
This was a great read filled with friendships, humor and relatable themes. A great coming of age story. I would recommend it to people who like realistic reads and LGBT.
This is just a message to people, don’t judge people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual. Just because they have different preferences, doesn’t make them less human. They have as much of a right to happiness and love as straight people. Don’t make it harder for them to come out than it already is. I hope that one day, they won’t even be classified as LGBT, instead we’ll all be equals. After all we are all people and if we don’t love each other, who will?
Q: Hi Naomi! Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
A: Wow, how do I sum up my life? I was born and raised on Long Island (NY), but have lived in NYC for the past 16 years. I have loved to write since I was a kid and would spend hours creating and illustrating little books. I won a county-wide poetry contest in the second grade, then wrote for Newsday’s “Kidsday” section in junior high. After I graduated from Syracuse with a journalism Master’s, I spent 14 years working as a reporter and editor for Soap Opera Digest magazine. In addition to writing, I play flute and design jewelry. I also love to travel. In the last 10 years, my husband and I have been to Australia, New Zealand, Iceland, Mexico, Japan and Nigeria, as well as plenty of other places. Oh, and I’m a self-described crazy cat person. Our cat is named Maya, but you’ll often find me talking to the cats I spy in our neighborhood. Sometimes people give me funny looks. I wonder why?
Q: Describe F#@! Bomb in 10 words or less.
A: A coming-of-age story about friendship, love and acceptance.
Q: What inspired you to write F#@! Bomb? Was it a particular event, person or something else altogether?
A: The idea was actually given to me by my best friend Scott, who is a gay man. A few years ago, he half-jokingly suggested that I write a story about a friendship between a woman and gay man. Little did he know I’d take him up on it! Meanwhile, I was struggling with my weight and he was urging me to get into shape. We’d had many discussions about my size and his sexuality — and how neither of us fit society’s “ideal.” All of these pieces came together to form this story. It’s not autobiographical, but it is loosely based on some events in my life. Like my narrator, Sadie, I’m currently training to walk in a long-distance event. This October, I’m participating in Avon’s 39.3 mile Walk To End Breast Cancer, so I can relate to many of my character’s struggles.
Q: What are your views on LGBT?
A: I’m a big advocate of LGBT individuals’ rights. On a personal level, I know and love many people who are gay or lesbian: Scott, of course, as well as my cousin and sister-in-law. I’ve also met several other gay men through Scott and adore this group of friends. On a broader level, I don’t think people should be judged for being born a certain way. Who cares if a man loves another man or a woman loves another woman, provided that the relationship is consensual and both people are legally of age? I’d like for gay marriage to become legal in all 50 states — and for us to reach a point where we don’t feel the need to qualify such a union with “gay.” I mean, no one calls my relationship with my husband a “straight marriage.” It’s just a … marriage.
Q: If you could bring ONE character from your book to the real world who would it be? And why?
A: I’d love to “meet” Veronica, who is Sadie’s eccentric roommate in college. Veronica creates paintings and sculptures made from “found objects” and says whatever is on her mind. However, she’s also incredibly smart and insightful. I don’t think I could stand to be around her for long, but she’d certainly be interesting! I think we’d have some lively conversations. I could probably learn a thing or two from her.
Q: Did you always know you were going to be an author?
A: Yes, I’ve known for most of my life — or at least since the second grade. Winning that poetry contest made me realize I had talent, but I really became interested in writing the next year when a teacher introduced me to Judy Blume’s novels. I fell in love with her work and wanted to become the next Judy Blume. She’s in a class by herself, but I’m happy where I’m at.
Q: Are you working on anything else right now? Or planning to?
A: I’m actually trying my hand at a sci fi novel! I don’t want to say too much right now, but it does involve time travel. Also, the narrator is male. So far, my novels have been realistic and have had female protagonists so this will be a huge challenge for me.
Q: Any words of advice to aspiring authors around the world?
A: A) Read as many books as you can, especially books in your genre. You obviously shouldn’t copy someone else’s work, but should get an idea of what good writing looks like. B) Take a writing class or join a critique group. You can never learn too much and it helps to get an outside view of your work. C) Be prepared to edit and revise your manuscript. Most people don’t get it right the first time. Having to change a passage doesn’t mean you’re a failure; it just means you’re making it better.
So, what do you guys think? Yay or nay? Would you give this book a shot? What are your thoughts on LGBT (no hate please)? Hugs ❤