The Gifted, the Talented and Me
Mr B's review
Sam is fifteen and doesn’t care about being famous. He’s struggling with the move to a new life in London after his family’s financial situation suddenly changes. Enrolling at the North London Academy for the Gifted and Talented seems like the worst thing in the world, with everyone chasing stardom and world domination. Littered with witty humour and a fantastic coming of age theme, this is an effortless read which captures the drama of teenage life in a nutshell.
SUNDAY TIMES CHILDREN’S BOOK OF THE YEAR 2019
Laugh-out-loud funny and instantly recognisable – not since The Inbetweeners has a coming of age story been so irreverent and relatable.
Fifteen-year-old Sam is not a famous vlogger, he’s never gone viral, and he doesn’t want to be the Next Big Thing. In fact he’s ordinary and proud of it.
None of which was a problem until Dad got rich and Mum made the whole family move to London. Now Sam’s off to the North London Academy for the Gifted and Talented, where everyone’s busy planning Hollywood domination or starting alt-metal psychedelica crossover bands. Sam knows he’ll never belong, even if he wanted to. And that’s before he ends up on stage wearing nothing but a fur onesie …
A brilliantly funny look at fitting in, falling out and staying true to your own averageness.
‘Dangerously funny … To the parent, every line rings true – this is a writer with real live teenagers and he is especially good on the ups and downs of sibling relations and young love. Sutcliffe is gifted and talented. I hope the prizes flood in. I’ll be giving this to every teenager I know’ – Alex O’Connell, The Times
‘The Gifted, the Talented and Me made me cry with laughter. A comic novel like this is a gift to the nation’ – Amanda Craig
Hold the front page: a young adult book has landed that isn’t set in a dystopian warzone, doesn’t involve a bleak tale of terminal illness, abuse or hate. Absolutely no one dies. Although readers may collapse laughing because, shush, it’s dangerously funny … To the parent, every line rings true – this is a writer with real live teenagers and he is especially good on the ups and downs of sibling relations and young love. Sutcliffe is gifted and talented. I hope the prizes flood in. I’ll be giving this to every teenager I know. * Alex O’Connell, The Times Children’s Book of the Week * So, so funny and recognisable – I immediately forced it on my 14 year old * Jenny Colgan, Sunday Times bestselling author * Funny books for teenagers are a scarce thing indeed, making The Gifted, the Talented and Me particularly welcome … Sutcliffe’s first comic novel for younger readers is a deft satire on 21st-century family life. Comparisons with Adrian Mole are inevitable, but this has a charm all of its own. * Fiona Noble, Observer * The Gifted, the Talented and Me made me cry with laughter. A comic novel like this is a gift to the nation, and Will Sutcliffe’s teenage Sam, struggling to adapt as his family moves to privileged, pretentious Hampstead and enrols him in a progressive London school is the best book he has written for a decade. He, David Nicholls and Joe Dunthorne are part of a tradition that goes back to PG Wodehouse, and which has never been more needed by readers young and old. * Amanda Craig, journalist and author of The Lie of the Land * Probably the funniest and most authentic novel that I’ve read about being an awkward, self-conscious teenage boy since I WAS an awkward, self-conscious teenage boy! Bravo, William Sutcliffe! * John Boyne, bestselling author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas * I totally loved The Gifted, the Talented and Me – great characters, packed with wisdom and reminiscent of Adrian Mole (there’s no higher praise, let’s face it). * Sathnam Sanghera, journalist and author of The Boy with the Topknot and Marriage Material * Sharp, witty and brilliantly observed … I haven’t laughed out loud like that for a long time * Brian Conaghan, Costa Award-winning author of The Bombs that Brought Us Together * I was never an awkward teenage boy, but it made me laugh out loud on the tube. Consequently, my membership of London has been revoked for such a serious breach of etiquette. * Patrice Lawrence, award-winning author of Orangeboy * What a wonderful book! It made me chortle, and I never chortle. So, so refreshing and charming and believable. I loved this book. * Max Porter, award-winning author of Grief is the Thing with Feathers and Lanny * I blasted through this corker …Definitely shades of Adrian Mole but also some Louise Rennison-esque
naughtiness, which can’t be a bad thing. YA needs more books like this … * Phil Earle, author of Demolition Dad and The Bubble Wrap Boy * More laughs out loud than any other book I have read this year. One to entertain all the family * Nicolette Jones, Sunday Times * A helping of Adrian Mole, spiced with a hint of Inbetweeners, this gives a painfully accurate insight into the agonies of male adolescence * Daily Mail * A brilliant comic satire on family life * Summertime and the reading is easy… – Sunday Express S Magazine * Rare is the description of an average family with ordinary problems, which is why William Sutcliffe’s The Gifted, the Talented and Me was so refreshing… Sutcliffe also debunked the notion of a hero who has the be somehow special and unique. * Financial Times Life & Arts * Ryan Watson brings a down-to-earth, gleefully comic sensibility to his performance as resolutely normal Sam, abruptly plonked into the North London Academy for the Gifted and Talented * The best audiobooks for young adults – Guardian Review *
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