Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Book Review: Lolito By Ben Brooks.

So I have just finished reading this book and I have to say I am a little bit disappointed even though it is quite a funny story but weirdly still okay enough to recommend. I decided to take an interest in this novel after Carrie Hope Fletcher recommended it so highly on her YouTube channel.

As the title clearly suggests this is a gender-swapped story similar to Lolita written by Vladimir Nabokov in 1955. 21 year old Ben Brooks' own novel is about a fifteen year old boy oddly named Etgar who is living life as a modern day teenager who suffers with anxiety over what he calls 'The Outside' (the regular street or town to you and me). He is cheated on by his long time girlfriend and first love Alice at a house party. Since he regularly uses social media, Facebook statuses and depends on random, often bizarre YouTube videos, in an online chat room, he poses as a mortgage broker in his twenties and gets talking to a middle-aged woman who is an attractive, fed up housewife called Macy. After going on a seven day drinking binge alongside various pills, he engages in inappropriate relations with her.

Taking into account the subject of the book, it isn't as tongue-in-cheek as you'd expect. Yes there are some quite graphic details of what Etgar and Macy get up to online but Brooks is more involved with the central character's despair over his failed relationship with Alice, his alcoholic rages and film anecdotes. It is peculiar to find yourself wanting more disturbing scenes within the book considering what it is about. You find yourself wanting more details about Etgar and Macy's time together when they do finally meet up in a London hotel. Macy is just a seemingly bored housewife with no paedophilic desires although she does seem still go through certain sexual acts with him despite finding out his real age upon meeting him. It just seemed to me that, despite the nature of the book, Ben Brooks just seemed hesitant to fully follow through with handling such a controversial subject. Also when their affair is eventually discovered, it seems to happen through dramatic inevitability rather than being developed logically throughout the story.

I will admit though, Brooks' does very well capturing the voice of a 21st-century teenager with the plausible insertion of Facebook statuses and internet chatrooms which gives you an insight into the lives that are lived partially online by more or less everyone these days. Through this, he does all of this with great humour and delivers a comedic element that entwines with Etgart's anxiety. However this isn't enough to feel sympathetic towards Etgar's dilemma with Alice and Macy's portrayal as the bored wife at home is sometimes quite clichéd which makes it seems like a lazy plot device. In time, the book becomes monotonous and tedious which makes what was an appealing idea in the beginning become limited and not used to its full potential.

However I would say it is worth a read just for the comedy as that is the only thing I cannot fault and it is perfectly timed throughout the novel. I would recommend no one under the age of 16 should read this as there are graphic details of a sexual nature. I haven't read his other books and this may not be the book of the year but I do think Ben Brooks is someone to keep an eye on!

What do you think of my review? Have you read this book too?
I will be so grateful for any of your thoughts.

Thankyou for reading.

<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/12531337/?claim=r7pcmrxt8j8">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>


  1. This is probably one of the most detailed reviews I've ever read, concise and I love it, Thanks for telling us about it and I'll definitely add it to my reading list, awesome post and blog, new followaaa :D


    1. Aw thankyou, I do try my best. Wouldn't be a review if I didn't give my detailed honesty haha. Thankyou for checking it out!


Thankyou for your comments. They are appreciated so much, I am very grateful and I will reply to every single one whenever I can. x