Monday, June 10, 2013

Review & Giveaway: Being Henry David by Cal Armistead

Title: Being Henry David
Authors: Cal Armistead
Number of Pages: 320
Published: March 1st 2013 by Albert Whitman Teen
Source: Publisher - Hardcopy
Genre: Romance > Realistic Fiction
Reading Level: Young Adult

Seventeen-year-old "Hank" has found himself at Penn Station in New York City with no memory of anything --who he is, where he came from, why he's running away. His only possession is a worn copy of Walden, by Henry David Thoreau. And so he becomes Henry David-or "Hank" and takes first to the streets, and then to the only destination he can think of--Walden Pond in Concord, Massachusetts. Cal Armistead's remarkable debut novel is about a teen in search of himself. Hank begins to piece together recollections from his past. The only way Hank can discover his present is to face up to the realities of his grievous memories. He must come to terms with the tragedy of his past, to stop running, and to find his way home.
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Imagine this....

You wake up not knowing where you are, who you are and nothing what so ever of your past. You family and friends, forgotten. Your age, name, and hometown, forgotten. Any shred of a memory before this exact moment....GONE.  

Seventeen-year-old boy finds himself doing just that. He wakes up in a NY train station with only these clues: a nasty bump on the head, a 10 bill in his pocket and a tattered old copy of Walden, by Henry David Thoreau. Having no memory of who is truly is he reinvents himself, as HANK or Henry David Thoreau. With nothing to lose and more so everything to gain. He searches for clues to his past and along with way finds more than he bargained for. New friends, a new life, and falling in love. Here is where his journey begins. A quest if you may, one to not only find out who he is but a spiritual self-discovery for a boy who has everything and nothing to lose. This coming of age novel takes the reader on a journey of their own. One to uncover who "HANK" really is but more so to find out what really happen in his past that lead him to where he is now. 

One of the most important aspects I loved about this book was that through the authors writing I was able to feel like I was there alongside Hank. Taking the roads to self-discovery he did, feeling his pain and frustration and just being there along for the ride in the search for "himself". Cal Armistead gives the reader such a deep and profound look into Hank life. Starting from where he began, knowing nothing at all about himself to where he ended up, closing in on the mystery. From page one I was hooked. I too needed to know who Hank truly was. Uncovering the clues, and solving the mystery alongside with the main character, I feel is what really makes "Being Henry David" to be so incredibly special. 

This unique, and thought provoking tale is the perfect coming to age story. Being Henry David" has everything:  Fresh and realistic characters, a fast paced drama, and a mystery that will leave you guessing!

This book is one NOT to miss! :)

 Totally Awesome! I loved it, would read again.

About The Author: Cal Armistead

Find Cal @

Cal has been a writer since age 9, when she submitted her first book, The Poor Macaroni Named Joany to a publisher. Sadly, this literary gem did not make it to print. But Cal continued pursuing her lifelong passion, and wrote copiously for radio, newspapers and magazines (Cal has been published in The Chicago Tribune, Shape Magazine, Body & Soul Magazine, Christian Science Monitor, Chicken Soup for Every Mom’s Soul and others). Although it took years for Cal to try her hand again at fiction writing, her first young adult novel (Being Henry David) will be published by Albert Whitman & Co. on March 1, 2013. Cal holds an MFA in creative writing from the Stonecoast program at the University of Southern Maine, works at an independent book store, is a voice-over actress, sings semi-professionally, and lives in a Boston suburb with her amazing husband and a dog named Layla.


Guess what? I have a extra copy of Being Henry David and I will be giving it away to one lucky reader. 
To enter all you have to do is use the rafflecopter form below. 

(Sorry everyone else, I can't afford much more.)


  1. Well, I honestly have been glossing over this one up until this point, but now I feel like I HAVE to read it! Thanks so much for the giveaway!

  2. I LOVE coming of age books! I have only read a couple because it's a new love but I do really enjoy them! Thanks so much for a great review! I want to know why "Hank" can't remember who is he is where he's from!

    My email: mrsjtucker2012[at]gmail[dot]com

  3. Christina K. in the rafflecopter

    This sounds like a unique story about growing up, about truly finding himself! Sounds awesome and I love Walden:))

    Lovely review:))

    Thank you:)

  4. This looks great! Love that cover, too ; ) I always wonder if the author has any life experience that they put into their books? Thanks for sharing with us and Thanks for the giveaway!
    mestith at gmail dot com

  5. This is an interesting storyline. Walden Pond is a book that I read back in high school. My classmate and I have agreed that Walden Pond is a book that a reader has to read in a park or out in the open air. It is not a book to be read inside a room. I wonder how the character Hank is going to find out who he is or where he came from. Quite intriguing indeed.

  6. Another great story on coming with age... Can't wait to read!

  7. I am a fairly new follower, and I am so appreciative of your great reviews. This one sounds like something I would enjoy so I am adding it to my list of to be reads. Thanks again!

  8. Great review! This sounds like a book I'd like. :D I like that the characters are realistic. Sometimes, the characters make dumb decisions. And I like that there's drama and a mystery! Thank you!


Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to read my post, I really appreciate it. :) Feel free to leave a comment below, I love reading them and I always try to visit everyone back. *MUAH*


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