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Monday, March 2, 2015

The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley Blog Tour {review, top ten list, giveaway}

I'm thrilled to have The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley Blog Tour stopping by today!

The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley
by Shaun David Hutchinson
Simon Pulse
Andrew Brawley was supposed to die that night. His parents did, and so did his sister, but he survived.

Now he lives in the hospital. He serves food in the cafeteria, he hangs out with the nurses, and he sleeps in a forgotten supply closet. Drew blends in to near invisibility, hiding from his past, his guilt, and those who are trying to find him.

Then one night Rusty is wheeled into the ER, burned on half his body by hateful classmates. His agony calls out to Drew like a beacon, pulling them both together through all their pain and grief. In Rusty, Drew sees hope, happiness, and a future for both of them. A future outside the hospital, and away from their pasts.

But Drew knows that life is never that simple. Death roams the hospital, searching for Drew, and now Rusty. Drew lost his family, but he refuses to lose Rusty, too, so he’s determined to make things right. He’s determined to bargain, and to settle his debts once and for all.

But Death is not easily placated, and Drew’s life will have to get worse before there is any chance for things to get better.

Praise for The Five Stage of Andrew Brawley

"In this haunting tale of grief and recovery, [Hutchinson] spins an engrossing story, with Drew’s perceptions lending it an almost surreal, supernatural quality...further developed by violent excerpts from [the included graphic novel] Patient F."
-Publishers Weekly

“Hutchinson builds believable secondary characters and presents unexpectedly fresh plotting and genuine repartee—the conversations among Drew and his two teen friends feel particularly real and are full of insight and humor. Hutchinson remains an author worth watching.”
-Kirkus Reviews

“Dark and frequently grim situations are lightened by realistic dialogue and genuineness of feeling. [A] heartbreaking yet ultimately hopeful work from a writer to watch.”

"The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley broke my heart, then put it back together again. I truly loved this book."
-Bruce Coville

"A wonderfully written book that is more proof that the genre of 'LGBT YA lit' simply knows no bounds."
-Brett Hartinger, author of Geography Club

"The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley is as inventive as it is moving. A beautiful book."
-Trish Doller, author of WHERE THE STARS STILL SHINE

Andrew Brawley is running from Death. Which isn’t easy when he was meant to die the night his family did and he now lives hidden away in a hospital. Andrew works in the hospital cafeteria, has made friends with the nurses, hangs out in the Pediatric ward, and at night, returns to a forgotten section of the hospital. He’s mastered the art of invisibility, which comes in handy when Death herself roams the same halls. But when hate crime victim, Rusty, comes into the ER one night, Andrew isn’t sure he wants to be invisible anymore.

The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley is an intensely emotional, oddly beguiling novel about life, death, and love. With a darkly quirky premise and intriguing storytelling, Shaun Hutchinson creates a captivatingly surreal atmosphere. The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley isn’t fast-paced, instead the story unfolds gradually, never revealing too much too soon. And this slower pace really works well, allowing readers to get to know Andrew and his story in a way that isn’t overwhelming and feels natural. Hutchinson’s storytelling is eloquent without being over the top, both laugh-out-loud funny and deeply emotional, poignant and profound without being overdone. The entire novel takes place inside a hospital and, while this certainly makes for an interesting setting, it’s the people inside this hospital that really make the story what it is.

Hutchinson has filled his novel with an eclectic array of characters, from insightful Andrew to his amusing nurse companions, endearing friends in the Peds ward, his more-than-meets-the-eye coworkers, and Death herself. These are characters that we get to know intimately and feel very real, sometimes painfully so. Andrew is a wonderfully messy, honest, and likable character that made me laugh, made me think, and both broke and warmed my heart. The friendships and relationships Andrew makes in the hospital are so important to his characterization and story, and I really loved them all. Andrew does get a romance of his own with Rusty and, while this romance is certainly sweet, it is far from cliche.

Is Death real or merely a metaphor or just Andrew’s way of dealing with his family’s deaths? I don’t know and I like that I don’t know. Like in life, Hutchinson doesn’t provide easy answers and simple outs. I also want to mention the awesome graphic novel illustrations throughout The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley, which make the perfect companions to Andrew’s story.

My Final Thoughts: With a fiercely unique premise, effective storytelling, and unforgettable characters, The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley will enthrall readers and leave them thoughtful.

4/5 yummy cupcakes

Top Ten LGBT YA Characters
by Shaun David Hutchinson

1.   Teeth from Teeth by Hannah Moskowitz
2.   Joey from Winger by Andrew Smith
3.   Cass from A Love Story Starring My Dead Best Friend by Emily Horner
4.   Ben and Cillian from The Knife of Never Letting Go and Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness
5.   Petra from Beauty Queens by Libba Bray
6.   Enki from The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson
7.   Robbie from Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith
8.   Noah from I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
9.   Dante from Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
10. Joph from When We Wake and While We Run by Karen Healey

I’m Shaun David Hutchinson, you can call me Shaun. Or Hutch.  I’ll respond to anything.  I’m the author of books for young adults, the first of which was The Deathday Letter, and the most recent of which are The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley (out 1/20/2015) and the anthology Violent Ends (Fall 2015).
I was born in West Palm Beach, FL, and grew up in Jupiter, FL where I’ve lived most of my life save for a couple of adventures in Atlanta and Rhode Island.  I always knew I wanted to be a writer but it took me a long time to figure out I could be one.  I’ve been a database developer, managed a wine company, slung coffee at Starbucks, and once spent a creepy month working in a statuary.  Luckily, that was before I’d seen the Weeping Angels on Doctor Who.  I studied literature in college where I fell in love with Beowulf and Chaucer and gothic literature.  I also studied emergency medicine at one time and insurance at another.  Currently, I work in IT and fill my remaining hours with freelance web design, database design, and editing.

(this is a blog tour wide giveaway)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Full blog tour schedule
March 2nd ~ Word Spelunking  – Review/Top Ten

March 2ndUnconventional Librarian – Guest Post

March 3rd ~ The Cover Contessa – Top Ten/Playlist

March 3rdReads All The Books – Review
March 4thWhat A Nerd Girl Says – Author Interview/GP

March 4th ~ Bookish - Debbie  – Review

March 5th ~ Beth - Fangirlish – Review

March 5th ~ The Reading Date – Review

March 6thBook Chic – Review

March 6thPixie Vixen Book Reviews  – Review

March 6thBooks a' la Mode – Review


Carl Scott said...

The story and the subject matter in general sound really interesting. Thanks for the chance to win it.

lady reader said...

Thank you so much for the awesome post. You rock! xx


anne s. said...

sounds like a book that would get me thinking and make me cry!

Anonymous said...

If Bruce Coville recommends it, then I've gotta read it

Sayomay said...

I have not read any LGBT books in a while. :( I have read Parrotfish and LOVED IT! So I am def wanting to read more in the genre. :D
Mary G Loki

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