Review: One Man Guy by Michael Barakiva

Posted July 8, 2014 by Bee in Reviews / 3 Comments

Review: One Man Guy by Michael Barakiva

One Man Guy

by Michael Barakiva
Pages: 255
Published on May 27th 2014
by Farrar Straus & Giroux
Genres: Contemporary, LGBT, Romance, Young Adult
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

A heartfelt, laugh-out-loud-funny story of romance, family, and self-discovery.

Alek Khederian should have guessed something was wrong when his parents took him to a restaurant. Everyone knows that Armenians never eat out. Between bouts of interrogating the waitress and criticizing the menu, Alek’s parents announce that he’ll be attending summer school in order to bring up his grades. Alek is sure this experience will be the perfect hellish end to his hellish freshman year of high school. He never could’ve predicted that he’d meet someone like Ethan.

Ethan is everything Alek wishes he were: confident, free-spirited, and irreverent. He can’t believe a guy this cool wants to be his friend. And before long, it seems like Ethan wants to be more than friends. Alek has never thought about having a boyfriend—he’s barely ever had a girlfriend—but maybe it’s time to think again.

5 Stars

This was such a nice surprise! I went into One Man Guy with mixed expectations and I just ended up loving it to bits. It’s such a surprisingly light and fun summer read. In one word: adorable.

One Man Guy tells the story of Alek. Alek’s family is Armenian and very much grounded in their own traditions. Alek doesn’t always feel like he belongs though. When his parents force him to go to Summer School, his whole summer seems to be ruined. But then the cool and handsome Ethan notices him and Alek’s summer just got a whole lot better. Ethan seems to want more than just be friends, but what does Alek want?

Wow, talk about diversity! This book is not only about a young man/boy discovering he’s gay. It’s also about that boy’s Armenian heritage. I was surprised by how much I loved that aspect of the book! I was a bit hesitant about it going into the book, but Michael won me over immediately! The stuff we learn about the Armenian people was really interesting and yes, I did get a bit hungry from all that talk about the foods they have. Makes me want to try Armenian food.

While this may not be the best writing ever, it’s still very good. I was sucked into the story right from the start and it didn’t let me go! Alek was such a great main character and I liked him a lot! I think a lot of people can relate to him. He’s stuck between being who his parents want him to be and being who he really is. I really did feel for him and with him. I was just as annoyed by his parents as he was and I loved that! His parents were a bit annoying at first. They really stick to their traditions and beliefs and while I respect that, it did annoy me a bit. They grew up in America themselves so they can expect their kids to be a bit more modern than they are too! But they grew a lot in this book and I really liked that! Alek’s brother Nik, who seems like the perfect son, also grows! The character development in this book is fantastic! Everyone grew in this book. They all learned from their mistakes.

I loved Becky, Alek’s best friend. She was fun, quirky, a bit of a nerd, … She’s such a great friend to Alek and I loved their friendship. It felt so real and genuine. And then you have Ethan. I loved him so much. He’s confident and free spirited. Almost the opposite of Alek. He has a really good influence on Alek, learning him that it’s not wrong to want something and be yourself. Their romance was absolutely perfect. It built up slow in the first half and the second half was just one swoon-worthy moment after another. So sweet and adorable!

One Man Guy is a very fun, sweet, adorable summer read that I’d recommend to everyone who loves a good contemporary romance book with a little more diversity in it. I loved it and I can’t wait to see what the author brings us next! And yes, Kat, I did want to hug everyone in this book by the end.

Favorite Quote

“You know, when I came home after our day in the city, I just crashed, thinking about Remi and how much I missed him. And then the next day was worse, And when you walked up to me at that ice cream machine, I just felt myself crumble inside. Around Remi, I felt like I was always trying to act like I was good enough. But around you, I don’t want to pretend or hide. That’s why I didn’t say anything in the cafeteria that day, I knew that in five seconds, I’d be crying on your shoulder.”

“That’s what it’s there for, Ethan.”

Alek leaned in, took Ethan’s face in his hands, and kissed him.”


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3 responses to “Review: One Man Guy by Michael Barakiva

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