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Publisher's Summary

Includes an extended interview with Christina Hobbs, Lauren Billings, and narrator Deacon Lee!

Fangirl meets Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda in this funny and poignant coming-of-age novel from New York Times best-selling author Christina Lauren about two boys who fall in love in a writing class - one from a progressive family and the other from a conservative religious community.

Three years ago Tanner Scott's family relocated from California to Utah, a move that nudged the bisexual teen temporarily back into the closet. Now, with one semester of high school to go and no obstacles between him and out-of-state college freedom, Tanner plans to coast through his remaining classes and clear out of Utah.

But when his best friend, Autumn, dares him to take Provo High's prestigious Seminar - where honor roll students diligently toil to draft a book in a semester - Tanner can't resist going against his better judgment and having a go, if only to prove to Autumn how silly the whole thing is. Writing a book in four months sounds simple. Four months is an eternity.

It turns out, Tanner is only partly right: four months is a long time. After all, it takes only one second for him to notice Sebastian Brother, the Mormon prodigy who sold his own Seminar novel the year before and who now mentors the class. And it takes less than a month for Tanner to fall completely in love with him.

©2017 Christina Lauren (P)2017 Simon & Schuster Audio

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Amazing YA m-m book

Autobiography by Christina Lauren is not normally a book I would pick up. But I was sent this absolutely gorgeous hardcover, and I try to read the books that are going on my shelf. I realize now that I never even read the blurb, just fell for the cover. I couldn’t fit it in my reading schedule, but I had a credit on audible so I grabbed it there, not even knowing that it was YA. But being in a bit of a slump, I was looking for something different, and Autobiography totally fit the bill and lived up to the gorgeous cover.

“I’m just a bisexual half-Jewish kid who’s falling in love with an LDS guy. The path for me isn’t as clear.”

I love Tanner and his family so much. They moved from California to Provo, Utah when Tanner was 15. Tanner is bisexual and half Jewish, and Provo is a predominantly Mormon (LDS) town. His mom is an ex-Mormon and understands how it all works, and both of his parents are very accepting of Tanner.

“I forget not everyone lives in a household where a parent sleeps in a MY QUEER KID RULES nightgown.”

But they still encourage him to keep his sexuality a secret because in that town, they know he would have problems. He couldn’t even share it with his best friend, Autumn. When Tanner takes a writing seminar his senior year, they are expected to write a novel, and the teacher brought in his most prominent student from the previous year to help out, Sebastian Brother. Sebastian’s book was already published, and he is now a student at a Mormon University. He is following his expected path as a son of a Mormon bishop, and going on his mission as soon as he returns from his book tour. Sebastian loves his religion and is devoted to the church.

When Tanner sees Sebastian in the class, his reaction is all-consuming and immediate. He has no idea if Sebastian is straight or gay, but there is a spark, an immediate connection.

“Kissing boys feels good. Kissing girls feels good. But something tells me kissing Sebastian would be like a sparkler falling in the middle of a field of dry grass.”

Sebastian loves his church. But being gay is not yet accepted. You are allowed to have feelings for the same sex, but you are never allowed to act on it.

"But we’ve both been raised to care greatly what our family thinks about us— their esteem is everything. On top of that, Sebastian has the looming judgment of the Church, telling him wherever he looks that the God he loves thinks he’s a pretty foul human being. It’s impossible to know how to undo the damage they’re doing to him."

I really loved how the authors really researched the town and the religion and presented both the good and bad. They never vilified the church and often pointed out the good. I loved that they weren’t afraid to tackle a tough subject and show both sides.

“Sometimes I wonder whether it’s God or the church that feels the strongest about these things.”
“My opinion?” I say carefully. “A God worthy of your eternal love wouldn’t judge you for who you love while you’re here.”

It’s so sad that Sebastian really has to choose between two things he loves, his church and his sexuality. But while this is an extreme example, it happens to young gay kids every day, having to choose between their family, their faith and their sexuality.

"He’s gay; he didn’t die. Nobody is wounded. I know Sebastian’s parents are good people, but holy hell, they just inadvertently made their own son feel like there’s something about him that needs to be fixed. So much for acceptance. So much for welcoming."


Likes:

•I have major cover love.
•A completely unique story that I recommend to everyone 15 and up.
•How the authors never demonized the church.
•The research and accuracy (I read comments from people who are from there).
•There was a lot of light and funny scenes, as well as hugely emotional ones.
•The huge differences between how each boy was accepted.
•Autumn, Tanner's best friend.
•I learned a little about the Latter Day Saints.
•Tanner’s family. His parents were completely accepting and amazing about it, and were still good, strict parents.
•The book within a book.
•That it didn't just have a perfect, happy ending though it is a HFN.

Dislikes:

•The narration changed from first to third person during the book. In the audible version, there is an interview with the authors and narrator at the end and they explain it, and it makes perfect sense. But for me, while reading it, I was wondering if I had gone crazy and it was 3rd person all along, which really took me out of the story.

The Narration:
Narrated by two different men, I loved Tanner’s narrator. Sebastian’s not as much, and it confused me a bit when he came in as 3rd person. The interview at the end make the audiobook even more worth it.

The Down & Dirty:
Autoboygraphy is a must-read novel for high school and beyond. It was a beautiful story of young love, discovery, religion, family, commitments, expectations, acceptance, secrets, heartbreak, friendship, laughter and more. It was a well researched, well crafted novel that addressed the closed mindedness of religion without vilifying it. It was unique, educational and unputdownable. I am hoping it gets picked up in high schools and starts being required reading. Whether you are a YA fan or not, I think Autoboyography is so unique and socially relevant that anyone can pick it up and love it. It was a hugely refreshing change from all of the erotic romance I have been reading lately, and kept me riveted the entire time.

Rating: 4.5-5 stars, 4.5 narration (No heat rating)

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Beautiful, touching story.

Would you listen to Autoboyography again? Why?

Yes! I would love to listen to the story again because it was entertaining, funny and beautiful. The character's struggles were tangible.

Who was your favorite character and why?

It's hard to choose as the main characters, Tanner, Sebastian and Autumn were all so great. This is because they felt real, they all their own personalities distinct from one another.

What about Deacon Lee and Kyle Mason ’s performance did you like?

I loved the performance because they were just ON POINT.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I cried two times. Mostly because some of it was so touching to me, but it also released some negative emotions for me concerning coming out and my own family.

Any additional comments?

I loved that this book was different. Tanner was out to his supportive family but was told to keep himself a secret from the rest of the town, even his best friend. I loved that this character was unapologetically bisexual and insisted on his label and explained his feeling for both girls and boys. While it wasn't entirely how I experience bisexuality, it was still super important to read and I needed this book as a bisexual teen to know that it was okay to be bisexual.

I'm not very religious but this book helped me to be empathetic to Sebastian's struggles in the Mormon community. His struggles were so tangible to me and Tanner's insight's into Sebastian's mind provided deeper meaning to me.

The other characters in the book all played a role and Autumn was a great secondary character if not a main character. She provided a lot of fun to the novel.

I would read this again and considering buying a physical copy.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Swoons, Sighs and Heartichokes

What made the experience of listening to Autoboyography the most enjoyable?

Great story. Believable Dialogue. Great Narration.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Autumn -- for ultimately being the best, best friend.

What does Deacon Lee and Kyle Mason bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The nuance and layers of emotions.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Laughed several times throughout!

Any additional comments?

One of my favorite Christina Lauren books yet! A beautiful representation of a budding M/M romance with the added pressures of organized religion, family expectations and small town living. A great read with lots of swoons, heartichokes and sighs. I hope teens (and adults) in the LGBTQ community find themselves represented in the novel and thoroughly enjoy the read.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • G
  • 10-07-17

Enjoyable listen

I enjoyed the story and narration even though it felt a little "young." The consistent overuse of metaphor and simile was slightly annoying but also humorous and appropriate as it fit with the narrator's point of view as a high school writer.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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I want more!

Please write a follow-up! I need to know what happens with Sebastian and his family!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Just beautiful.

I so adored every part of this audio book the writing flowed and I swam along not breathing...
To see the conflict that Sebastian held was extremely sad but he overcame it to find his other soul- Tanner .......
The narrators were perfectly perfect....
Read the book then bought the audio ! ♥️

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Amazing, heart tugging, and so beautiful!

First time “reader” of Christina Lauren and first time listener of Deacon Lee. I have to say I’m beyond happy for this one to be my firsts. This book is stunning. And the narration was perfection. It pulled at my heart for Sebastian and Tanner. Tanner has such a beautiful soul. And Sebastian. Gahhh. I too wanted to hug him and build his confidence in himself like you see throughout the book by some amazing characters. There are so many amazing facts about this book I could go on and on, but the one that had me the most was the ending. It had my heart pounding and tears in my eyes.

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loved it.

heartbreak and heartwarming. Everyone should read this. it should be a must read for parents.

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What I l'd call an insanely flawless read!

I walked into this book feeling very different about it. For one, I love Christina Lauren's romances so I knew this one was VERY different from what the duo usually writes. The first thing that drew me in was the details about the LDS community. Believe it or not, I was actually interested in that. I wanted to learn a bit more about Utah and Mormon culture without it being demonized. Not because I want to be one but because I just love religious diversity and the first step to understanding people of different faiths is learning about them. This book was excellent about teaching me things I didn't know, and refreshing me on things I knew about from past learnings. Overall, the authors either seem to have grown up in the life or did amazing research!

On to the characters:
At first I didn't think I'd connect to a M/M story because normally they don't catch my interest as much as F/F stories. Give me a F/F romance and I'll devour it but a male-centered romance, I'll admit it's hard for me to relate to a story that's solely focused on guys since I don't see myself in the, if you must, story. I'll even admit that if I didn't know it had a lot of insight on LDS culture, I still may not have been in a rush to pick it up. But I'm so glad I did because that ending was PERFECT! I was not expecting that at all. Sebastian, a gay 19 year old Mormon struggling both with his faith and his sexuality, while Tanner was Bi and had really supportive people in his life who didn't want to see him get hurt by falling in love with a Mormon boy. Sebastian was so true to character, I expected him suppress himself for the rest of his life, so when he finally choose love, I was so happy for both him AND Tanner. This book was a true winner!

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a big fan now

loved this book! I had not heard of Christina Lauren before I took a chance on Roomies. then I was hooked. half way through roomies I downloaded Autoboyography. although it's categorized as young adult, when I read the summary I knew I'd love it. the narrators have smooth, easy to listen to voices and the book flowed nicely. I've found a new favorite author!

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  • Whimseyma
  • 09-23-17

Great story with something fro everyone

Great story but the secret ingredient is the wonderful Deacon Lee empathetically guiding us through

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  • Lara
  • 01-26-18

Lovely and a bit different

Love the different aspect of adding the religious side in, especially as someone who has very little to do with religi