The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Gothgirl, Barry Lyga, Houghton Mifflin, 2006, 315 pp
I read this as part of my foray into Young Adult lit. This is Barry Lyga's first novel. Fanboy is a 14 year old high school sophomore who suffers from social ostracism at school. He hates jocks and is a comic book geek; very intelligent and creative but tortured. Gothgirl dresses in black with white makeup. She is also an outcast but deals with it defiantly.
The two become friends and she encourages him as he creates a graphic novel on an ancient Mac. I was annoyed by the emotional immaturity of Fanboy but I suppose it is realistic for an introverted boy of his age. His mom is divorced, remarried and pregnant. He despises his stepfather and barely communicates with the man.
For a teen reader into comics and graphic novels, a genre with which I am not very familiar, I would imagine that all the references to books and authors (including Neil Gaiman) would be cool. In the end, Fanboy grows up a bit, figures out about girls and has other moments of enlightenment, all of which feels pretty authentic. I liked Fanboy, Gothgirl and the book by the time I finished it.