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Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

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Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

Post Number:#1 by Amagine
» 15 Apr 2017, 12:09

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "My Lonely Room" by John A. Vikara.]

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4 out of 4 stars
Review by Amagine
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Everyone has a "comfort zone." It is a place where you can go when you don’t want to deal with the world. Your comfort zone could be a person. It can be inside the fictional world of a book. If you’re James “Jimmy” Yadenik, your comfort zone is probably your own bedroom. In John. A Vikara’s My Lonely Room, we are introduced to twelve-year-old Jimmy who suffers from social anxiety. As much as he wants to leave his room and be around other kids, he is too afraid of interaction and humiliation. He sits in his room instead, writing stories and drawing comics because they represented a world where he could control what happens. The desire for human contact starts to overwhelm him and he finds himself struggling to be part of a world that he has no control over.

Contemporary YA books with male leads are rare. Which is unfortunate because more teenage boys should read books, especially ones that correlates with them and their experiences. The author creates a story that children, teens and adults will all relate to. In the plot, we learn about Jimmy’s home life. His feelings are ignored by his parents and he gets bullied in his neighborhood by the landlady and other children. Whenever situations become too much for him to bear, he escapes to his room. There’s a moment he sadly thinks, “It was almost as though my destiny was to be there in my room—my lonely room.” In his mind, his room is his comfort zone and it’s a cage he wants to break free from.

The plot is well paced and every scene held significance to Jimmy’s story. We see all his desperate attempts to step out of his room. There were times when he failed and fled back to his cage. There were many more times when he succeeded and grew more confident. The development of Jimmy’s character is where we see true craftsmanship from the author. In the book, we not only see every one of Jimmy’s experiences, but we see how he grows from each one. Even though this is a work of fiction, Jimmy’s character seems so authentic. Every character in Jimmy’s life seem like any real and complicated individual that we would see in our own world. Every character serves to make the story more personable to readers.

This book should be given to all middle and high school students to read because there is so much to be gained. One of the biggest motivations in the book is Jimmy’s resilience. In one scene, he finds himself trapped in a bad situation and his first thought is to flee to his room. He decides against it and says to himself, “Don’t go into that lonely room. Don’t return to that life. You have to step up… step up to your new life.

I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. This story will touch so many readers because of the struggles and triumphs of Jimmy. I would recommend this book to anyone, but mainly to middle grade students or high schoolers. I feel that they would gain the most from this story because of the age of the character and his experiences. There’s a lot of children who suffer from social anxiety. Jimmy’s story may help them and maybe they’ll be able to step up to a new life too.

******
My Lonely Room
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Re: Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

Post Number:#2 by kandscreeley
» 17 Apr 2017, 07:39

This sounds like a great book. Not only does it sound fun to read, but it has a good message as well. Thanks for the review. I'm glad there is a book out there like this. It would be a good conversation starter with your children.
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Re: Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

Post Number:#3 by Amagine
» 17 Apr 2017, 08:23

kandscreeley wrote:This sounds like a great book. Not only does it sound fun to read, but it has a good message as well. Thanks for the review. I'm glad there is a book out there like this. It would be a good conversation starter with your children.


I think so too! So many people are suffering with a social anxiety that keeps them from living life. This book is one that helps to open dialogue on such a sensitive matter.
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Re: Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

Post Number:#4 by Gingerbo0ks
» 18 Apr 2017, 11:44

Again it is good to see another YA book with a male lead, and a sensitive subject matter. Hopefully lots of teens will pick this up and read it and it might better their awareness of social anxiety. This is a great review Amagine.
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Re: Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

Post Number:#5 by Amagine
» 18 Apr 2017, 12:41

Gingerbo0ks wrote:Again it is good to see another YA book with a male lead, and a sensitive subject matter. Hopefully lots of teens will pick this up and read it and it might better their awareness of social anxiety. This is a great review Amagine.


Thank you so much! I've kind of noticed that I'm starting to really enjoy reading YA with male leads. I think maybe I'm going to have to write my own someday!

Thanks for reading! :D
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Re: Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

Post Number:#6 by Lest92
» 19 Apr 2017, 13:37

Interesting combination that - young male lead and social anxiety, which isn't something I come across in fiction at all - might be an exercise in empathy to see the issue from the sufferer's side.
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Re: Official Review: My Lonely Room by John A. Vikara

Post Number:#7 by Amagine
» 19 Apr 2017, 13:51

Lest92 wrote:Interesting combination that - young male lead and social anxiety, which isn't something I come across in fiction at all - might be an exercise in empathy to see the issue from the sufferer's side.


It definitely made me empathetic. Also, you're right, you rarely see teen male leads have any social disorders or mental illnesses. It's like having mental/ emotional problems is something reserved only for girls. It was sad and yet refreshing to know that boys and girls all have the same issues.
"Writing something in the spirit of Halloween is just second nature to me." -Danny Elfman

"One must be a little crazy to write a good novel." -John Gardner
Amagine's Latest Review: "My Ladybird Story" by Magus Tor
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