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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

What listeners say about Autoboyography

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Very lovely story

I just loved this story. It made me laugh and cry many times. It is full of innocence and wisdom at the same time. I highly recommend it.

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I’m not sure about the ending.

Overall I’d give this book a 3.5. I did like the narration but I’m not sure I saw the reasoning behind separate narrators. While both of the narrators did a really good job, I feel like it just added to the disjointed feeling the abrupt switch from first person to third person near the end of the book caused. For me that was a significant problem. There are several ways the authors could have handled switching narratives. I’m the interview at the end they justify this decision by saying they meant for the majority of the book to feel like Tanners book and the end to feel like it’s Sebastians perspective but that definitely didn’t come across. Going from first person to third abruptly just felt like sloppy writing. Authors shouldn’t want to pull their readers out of the story because immersion is absolutely necessary for enjoyment so I don’t buy their justification that it was intentional. Mix the abrupt change in narrative with a change in narrators at the same time and the result is quite unsettling. Overall content wise I liked the story. It felt well researched and I thought the romance was cute. I also liked that the book doesn’t outright condemn religion. Instead it paints a realistic picture, both good and bad, and let’s the reader decide for themselves on how they feel. The cover art is absolutely gorgeous! I also really enjoyed the characters and felt they were for the most part well rounded. However, I had a problem with the ending. —- SPOILERS —— Sebastian struggles for so long with his faith and sexuality. It is a large part of the books focus. Religion and faith was a huge part of his identity. Still, I was happy when he finally decided to be true to himself with regards to his sexuality. After their breakup I was hoping they would reunite. During which I really didn’t see the point in having Tanner sleep with his best friend. It didn’t do anything for the story other then add unnecessary drama that didn’t go anywhere. If you removed any mention of it from the story nothing would change so I don’t get why it happened in the first place. It made Autumn into kind of a shitty person. She knew Tanner didn’t like her like that but she “takes advantage of him” (her words) anyway. She made him feel like crap, she turned him into a “cheater” (again her words) and almost ruined their friendship. Boy or girl if my best friend did that we would no longer be friends. Sexual coercion is not okay! I don’t care if you really really love the person or not. That aside, I hoped Sebastian would reunite with Tanner. I’m a sucker for a happily ever after. Yet when they finally did it felt rushed and thrown together. I hated that we were left with a “we need to talk” moment that faded to black with Sebastians parents. There was no closure to the inevitable blow up his decision would have caused especially given he made it only moments before the huge party meant just for him. The impression given by the rest of the book was the Sebastian would absolutely be disowned and excommunicated from the church should he chose to live as a gay man. His parents and family completely stopped speaking to him for weeks at just the suggestion he MIGHT be gay. Yet we are supposed to believe they changed their minds when he not only confirms it but chooses to act on it as well? I can believe God was giving Tanner a “life lesson” when Sebastian conveniently finds him on the huge UCLA campus at the exact moment he happened to go outside with his (gay Mormon) friend. But there no way that Sebastians family would be “working [their] way back to each other” after he turned down his mission to be with a man. I get that Sebastian being disowned doesn’t fit in with the neat little happy for now the authors tried to create but if they wanted the ending to be believable they should have shown his family having even the tiniest amount of compassion towards his sexuality at any point during the novel. They didn’t though, in fact it was suggested that parents within the religion would rather have a dead child than one living a “gay lifestyle.”

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • 🎧 Cyndi Marie 🎧
  • 2018-06-16

✫✫ 4.5 Stars ✫✫

I really loved this story. I love how inspiring it was both for YA who are Gay/Bi and for religious aspect too. This book shows realistic issues that teens face everyday and how hard it can be but also shows that not everything has a sad ending. Tanner was a great character, he was sure of himself and his sexuality even if he was hiding, it wasn't because of him or his family. I really loved his parents the most in this book because they talked to their kids instead of at them, they supported their kids and genuinely just didn't want them to suffer because of other. Sebastian had the harder situation here I think because his heart was telling him he was in love and it was also telling him that he needed his religion and those two things can't combine. His family was a lot harder than I would have liked but they just wanted what they truly thought was best for him. In the end this book left me with smile on my face and I want to tell all the YA's I know to read it! Even though I had some issues with narration, it couldn't have ruin this book for me because I just loved the story that much! Narration... well that's a hard one for me with this book. First lets talk about the narrators. 90% of this book is narrated by Deacon Lee who is a great narrator but he sounds like John Malkovich which means he sounds way to old to narrate 18/19 year old boys, the same goes for Kyle Mason in my opinion. Now the narrative change in the end was very hard for me to get past. It wasn't about the narrators but the writing style. I know why they switched narrative style but it just pulled me out of this great story and I found it very hard to get back into it. Its a little hard to explain, it was almost like it was written in the first person unless he was talking about himself, then he refereed to himself in the third person. It has to be one or the other for me because it was just to distracting and I'll admit it kinda took away from the ending for me. That is the only reason this book lost .5 star from me.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Ana's Attic
  • 2017-10-06

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)

10 people found this helpful

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  • G
  • 2017-10-07

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.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2017-09-18

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.

3 people found this helpful

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  • thiscitygirl
  • 2017-09-13

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 people found this helpful

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  • ~E~
  • 2017-09-28

I want more!

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

1 person found this helpful

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  • Pat Johnson
  • 2017-09-27

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 person found this helpful

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  • Misty
  • 2017-09-17

Everything

This book is so much of everything. A coming of age with religious and familial complications. 2 young men that fall in love but are separated so far by religion, family, school, history, miles... too much for one to think they will ever recover.

There are no words for how much I loved this book. It was so well written and so completely entertaining and engrossing that I literally couldn't turn it off. There was so much to learn from as a parent, that I will hold these lessons close to my heart forever.

Deacon Lee did a great job. His narration didn't jump out of my earbuds and wasn't distracting either. It was just a good compliment to a great story.

1 person found this helpful

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  • MomOThree
  • 2020-11-13

Omg

Ong I cried so much for any lgbtq+ person I hope you read this it hit home for me ily and i love this book

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-10-04

Damn this Book cover has so much meaning now!

The relationship is beautiful because it felt so real and the struggles felt so real. The narration is excellent and the writing is beautiful, charming and emotional. Personally I felt this book touched me because I too am facing a similar struggle with the characters and I can honestly that this book felt like it was made for me. The amount of hope this book gives me is something I want everyone to experience. The anxiety and longing of forbidden love is palpable in every chapter. The tension is so well built up and well paced for things to end in a satisfying way. Despite the predictable nature of a story like this, how it plays out is still very surprising and engaging. I love this book and it gives me hope.