Title:   Freakboy

Author:  Kristin Elizabeth Clark

Publisher:  Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013

ISBN: 9780374324728

About the author: from

Kristin Elizabeth Clark lives and writes in San Francisco, Ca. She is a believer in and an advocate for human kindness. As such, she pretty much tries to stay off of social media. Kristin writes, teaches workshops, and speaks on panels about social justice, diversity, and writing for children and young adults. She’s also host and founder of The Ocean Beach Poet’s Society.

Her young adult debut, Freakboy, was published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) in 2013. It received three starred reviews, and was named to several best-of lists, including the Top 10 Rainbow List by the American Library Association, and the Bank Street Best Books for Children.

The praise she is most humbled by however comes from the readers, both trans* and cis, who write to tell her that the book has changed, and in some cases even saved, their lives.


Critical Evaluation— 

Genre:GLBTQ fiction; Multiple perspectives; Novels in verse; Realistic fiction


Character: LGBTQIA diverse, authentic

storyline: character-driven, issue-oriented???

Pace: leisurely paced

Tone: angst-filled??, inspiring, reflective

writing style: descriptive, engaging, lyrical

17-year old Brendan Chase


Of wrestling, “I hate touching other guys. I hate my own body. And most of all? I hate Coach Childers. He calls me Brenda.”

written in a prose?

Brendan has a girlfriend, Vanessa, and a friend, Angel.

consoling tone






Reader’s Annotation

Genre—”Genre:GLBTQ fiction; Multiple perspectives; Novels in verse; Realistic fiction
Character:LGBTQIA diverse

Curriculum Ties


Booktalking Ideas

Reading Level/Interest Age—16+

Challenge Issues

Challenge Resources

  • Library Selection Policy
  • Rationale explaining why the item was chosen for the collection
  • Active listening skills
  • Awards
  • Reconsideration form (as a last resort)
  • National Council of Teachers of English “Right to Read”
  • Positive and negative reviews: expert, parent, student
  • ALA Strategies and Tips for Dealing with Challenges to Library Materials
  • ALA Bill of Rights on Intellectual Freedom
  • Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
  • Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.

Why did you pick this for your collection?

  • Rainbow List: 2014
  • YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults: 2014