Release Date: March 13th, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Source: Netgalley from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Guy Langman, Crime Scene Procrastinator by Josh Berk
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Guy Langman can't be bothered with much. But when his friend Anoop wants Guy to join the forensics club with him in the (possibly misguided) hopes of impressing some girls, Guy thinks why not.They certainly aren't expecting to find a real dead body on the simulated crime scene they're assigned to collect evidence from. But after some girlish, undignified screaming, the two realize it is indeed a body. Which means they have stumbled across a real, dead murder victim.Meanwhile, Guy has been looking into the past of his father—a larger-than-life character who recently passed away. He was much older than Guy's mom, and had a whole past Guy never even knew about. Could his father's past and the dead body be linked? Does Guy want to know? He's going to need all his newfound forensics skills to find out . . .From the Hardcover edition.
Guy Langman was a really weird read for me. I really wanted to put it down during the first fifty pages and go read something else. But I stuck it out, and I guess I am glad I did. I guess, but I'm not really. I didn't hate the book, but I did find it extremely disappointing. But the main reason I stuck with it was because I needed the state this book was set in for a reading challenge.
My main issue with this book were the jokes. 95% of them were not funny. And then there were a select few that pretty much had me rolling. But when those hilarious jokes are bookended by two stinkers, it kind of ruins the effect. As far as the types of jokes? There were penis jokes, fart jokes, your mother jokes, religious jokes--no stone is left unturned. Also, if you need to explain the punchline of every joke, that means they aren't funny. I get that this was sort of Guy's shtick, but I hated it.
I didn't like Guy very much either. He was kind of a tool. He complained a lot, he was always making fun of people that were different from him, and he wasn't very nice to anyone. Not even his best friend Anoop. I realize that teenage boys are often unruly like this, but it doesn't mean I have to like it. He just really got on my nerves. Top that off with all the ridiculous and unfunny jokes, and I just couldn't connect to him or root for him.
And then there was the plot itself. I was just really confused. And so will you be after I try to describe it to you. The book started with like no plot. I was at page 35 and I was looking under cushions for anything that could tell me where this story was going. The pacing was sooo slow. And at only 235 pages, it was very troubling. The plot eventually snuck up on me around the 90 page mark. But I still say there wasn't a main plot. It was disjointed, and to me it felt like spurts of story in different chapters that all led back to the same thing. And there were times when I thought, "Is this the main plot? No, no, this must be the main plot." And then I was wrong again. It just felt very all over the place for me. It's not something that is easily described in words, but just know that I didn't like it. Thoroughly confused?
In the end, there were a few things I liked. I think the storyline itself was fairly fun to read. But I would have liked it a lot more if the book had been structured differently. I just couldn't get past that. And the fact that Guy made me hate teenage boys all over again. I think some readers will be able to connect with him, but I was not one of them. I just didn't care for this one all that much.