The New David Espinoza
This own voices story from the acclaimed author of The Closest I’ve Come unflinchingly examines steroid abuse and male body dysmorphia. Perfect for fans of Jason Reynolds and Matt De La Peña.David Espinoza is tired of being messed with. When a video of him getting knocked down by a bully’s slap goes viral at the end of junior year, David vows to use the summer to bulk up— do what it takes to become a man—and wow everyone when school starts again the fall.Soon David is spending all his time and money at Iron Life, a nearby gym that’s full of bodybuilders. Frustrated with his slow progress, his life eventually becomes all about his muscle gains. As it says on the Iron Life wall, What does not kill me makes me stronger.As David falls into the dark side of the bodybuilding world, pursuing his ideal body at all costs, he’ll have to grapple with the fact that it could actually cost him everything.

The New David Espinoza Details

TitleThe New David Espinoza
Author
ReleaseFeb 11th, 2020
PublisherHarperTeen
ISBN-139780062489883
Rating
GenreYoung Adult, Contemporary, Health, Mental Health, Realistic Fiction

The New David Espinoza Review

  • Lea (drumsofautumn)
    January 1, 1970
    FRIENDS! This is a book about steroid abuse and male body dysmorphia!!!!!! Can we please make sure to support and hype the shit out of this????
  • Alex Richey
    January 1, 1970
    AudioFile Review!This was eye opening. Bullying, body dysmorphia, steroid abuse... This was an unflinching look at the pressure faced by teens and young men, and shows how powerful the desire to change can be, to the point of destroying their own bodies.
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  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    #gifted Thank you @harperya360 for sending me this ARC for an honest review in return.The New David Espinoza. I really, really wanted to love this book as it’s about male body dysmorphia and steroid abuse, but unfortunately it fell flat for me *face palm*.This book covers a really important topic which has been rarely touched and I want people to read it and support it! Just because in the end it wasn’t my favourite book of all time doesn’t mean I want others to be put off by it! Please do pick #gifted Thank you @harperya360 for sending me this ARC for an honest review in return.The New David Espinoza. I really, really wanted to love this book as it’s about male body dysmorphia and steroid abuse, but unfortunately it fell flat for me *face palm*.This book covers a really important topic which has been rarely touched and I want people to read it and support it! Just because in the end it wasn’t my favourite book of all time doesn’t mean I want others to be put off by it! Please do pick up this book! It’s an own voices story!I enjoyed the company of the characters in this book and it is emotional but it just didn’t come together for me in the end. I honestly wish it did.It’s a different type of book and I know people out there will enjoy it!
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  • Mayar El Mahdy
    January 1, 1970
    2.5/5I liked the cover and the synopsis so much. It's like a scarring get-fit montage played with an evil "Eye of The Tiger" in the background.The topic of male body image is rarely tackled, but it wasn't very well-done her. I feel as if the author told as rather than showing the problem and letting us connect the dots.
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  • Kim
    January 1, 1970
    Everyone read this book! Boys/Men struggle with body image problems too and it's important to acknowledge them! And this book is a good way to start and to become aware of this problem.
  • Justin
    January 1, 1970
    While not the most subtle book ever written, The New David Espinoza confronts the realities of male body dysmorphia/steroid use and does so in an affecting way. The complex relationship between David and his well-meaning but misguided mentor Alpha is especially moving.
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  • Dani Amaya
    January 1, 1970
    “Looking in the mirror, my first thought is that I hate my pathetic body. That’s okay, I remind myself. I’m finally doing something about it.” 4/5 stars! I have always been aware that men experience as many body issues as women and I think I’ve only grown more and more aware with the rising popularity of superhero movies. Especially after reading about the kind of extreme conditions actors have themselves through in order to avoid judgement from audiences. However, this book really forced myself “Looking in the mirror, my first thought is that I hate my pathetic body. That’s okay, I remind myself. I’m finally doing something about it.” 4/5 stars! I have always been aware that men experience as many body issues as women and I think I’ve only grown more and more aware with the rising popularity of superhero movies. Especially after reading about the kind of extreme conditions actors have themselves through in order to avoid judgement from audiences. However, this book really forced myself to look at the reality of how men are subjected to this judgement on their bodies in ways I never thought about before. I, of course, haven’t experienced it personality, but I definitely have a history with eating disorders and body issues in general. I’m very thankful to this book for talking about a topic that people don’t really treat like the problem it is. And in a YA book, which is important since high school isThe book centers on David Espinoza, who is desperate to transform his body before the end of the summer, in the hopes of trying to get his school to forget the viral video of him getting bullied and finally getting some respect. When he worries about not making enough progress fast enough, his fitness journey takes a turn down a dark and dangerous path that might cost him more than he anticipated.I absolutely felt for David with every page of this book. I could imagine readers getting upset with him or frustrated at times, but I honestly very stopped caring about him. From the first chapter, I understood that he was just this guy, who loves his family, has a good head on his shoulders, but is fundamentally insecure. Which really broke my heart, just smashed it against the wall. He’s such a good brother and son, every scene with his family just made my heart overflow. He had a vibrant personality that you can feel withering as the novel moves, which just felt like excellent writing.Plus, I feel like I had to love him because I understood his mentality so well. Every time he readjusted his goals and pushed himself further and further, beyond the lines he had set for himself, I recognized it all too well. And it’s really not that rare. The book discusses really well how even the people we admire and recognize as role models can be unsatisfied with themselves. Internally, we always tell ourselves how we don’t measure up to those around us when everyone else is doing the exact same thing. Which, as the book shows, is like- stupid exhausting.I also loved the way that Mexican culture was tied to this. Being Mexican, I definitely understood how pressure from parents affects the way you grow up thinking about your body. It’s really common to have nicknames in Spanish that just describe your body, or the thing you may hate about your body. Honestly, it’s kind of messed up sometimes. There’s no malice in it, but that doesn’t mean we don’t hear malice in our own heads.The only aspect of this book that I’m desperate to zoom in on is the negative self-talk. I don’t want to go in too deep to avoid spoilers, but it was the most disturbing part of the book for me. Partly because of how vicious it is, but also how accurate it is. Which is why I mention it at all. David’s internal narration whenever he thinks about himself and his body is so accurate it actually pained me to read it. It’s a part of the novel that stood out to me as particularly poignant on how we need to talk to teenagers about mental health.In a really simple way, mental health has a lot to do with how people treat themselves, which can be easily described as “that little voice”, the one that whispers about your weight, what your friends think of you, and how much you’re worth. This book shows how skilled that voice is in lying when it’s been trained that way. David’s story also shows how hard it is to stop believing it. In that sense, the pacing and plot arc of this book was really fantastic. You really get a sense for how David’s training correlates with his mental health over the summer and onward. The decent for David going further and further down a path that leads him away from what he loves.You know the phrase, “Tell me who are your friends, and I’ll tell you who you are”? Well, it sounds better in Spanish, but that phrase is also a big chuck of this book. I don’t buy that your friends fundamentally change you as a person. I think we change our friends based on what we want, even if it’s not a "good" want, we can only change when we want to. The issue is when we want to be changed for the unknowable worse. David’s support group, the people in his life who care about him really shined in this book. The different ways that they weigh on his mind and how they try to reach out meant the world to me throughout the book.TL;DR: This heart-breaking novel takes you down with David on his heart-breaking journey that leads to re-examining how you’ve thought about male body standards, addiction, and what a “healthy” body looks like. This book delivers hard truths and vulnerable writing on a subject that people seem more than happy to keep quiet on. E-galley provided by Epic Reads and Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. All quotations and opinions are my own and based off an uncorrected proof.
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  • Myndi
    January 1, 1970
    This was a very interesting book for me, and very unique compared to other YA books I've read. I think this type of book is very important, as it seems that there aren't many books for teens that focus on the dangers of steroid use. Also, I'd never heard of muscle dysmorphia before and I'm sure there are many people who haven't. Bringing light to conditions that are little known is a wonderful thing that novels can do.David goes through a lot dealing with being bullied and the aftermath of a This was a very interesting book for me, and very unique compared to other YA books I've read. I think this type of book is very important, as it seems that there aren't many books for teens that focus on the dangers of steroid use. Also, I'd never heard of muscle dysmorphia before and I'm sure there are many people who haven't. Bringing light to conditions that are little known is a wonderful thing that novels can do.David goes through a lot dealing with being bullied and the aftermath of a viral video showing him being bullied. But when he falls to steroids to help him get bigger, he ends up losing so much more than his pride. He ends up pushing people away, and losing control of what made him himself.In this story, the boy finds out before it's too late the dangers he's facing and gets help. I'm sure there are more stories of those who don't find out until it's too late and some even lose their life.
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  • Rebecca
    January 1, 1970
    A twiggy teen gets slapped with an awful nickname and moves in with the incredible hulk.But seriously, THIS. Finally, a ya title about MALE body dysmorphia and steroid abuse.It’s the summer before senior year and a video of David Espinoza getting slapped down has gone viral. Determined to put an end to being bullied, he commits himself to bulking up—and falls down a rabbit hole of weights, syringes, and costly gains. Its message is a bit obvious, and the suddenness of the plot gave me serious A twiggy teen gets slapped with an awful nickname and moves in with the incredible hulk.💪But seriously, THIS. Finally, a ya title about MALE body dysmorphia and steroid abuse.💉It’s the summer before senior year and a video of David Espinoza getting slapped down has gone viral. Determined to put an end to being bullied, he commits himself to bulking up—and falls down a rabbit hole of weights, syringes, and costly gains. 🏋️‍♂️Its message is a bit obvious, and the suddenness of the plot gave me serious whiplash—zero to moving out to dropping out?💨 But getting in the head of teen struggling with who he is and what he looks like matters. It’s raw and irrational. But totally relatable.❤️Give it a read for a fresh take on body image struggles.
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  • Nikki
    January 1, 1970
    David is a skinny junior in high school when the story starts and becomes humiliated by a video of himself that goes viral. He decides he will join a gym and bulk up over the summer and return to school and impress all the people who have bullied him. At the gym, David realizes that he will not see results as quickly as planned and not as obvious. While making friends with the guys at the gym, David is on a spiral downward spin into the world of steroids and the effects they have on the male David is a skinny junior in high school when the story starts and becomes humiliated by a video of himself that goes viral. He decides he will join a gym and bulk up over the summer and return to school and impress all the people who have bullied him. At the gym, David realizes that he will not see results as quickly as planned and not as obvious. While making friends with the guys at the gym, David is on a spiral downward spin into the world of steroids and the effects they have on the male body. A very real look into male bodybuilding and the effects of steroids.I have read several books lately on the male body dysmorphia issue and surprised more people are not aware of this issue.
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  • Ms. Yingling
    January 1, 1970
    E ARC from Edelweiss PlusI really, really wanted to like this story about body dysmorphia in a boy, and I am very grateful to the author for dropping the f-bomb early and often so that I knew that it was not a middle grade book right away. Very intriguing story, and I would buy this for high school, but it was a bit much for middle school.
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  • Ayla Johnson
    January 1, 1970
    Devoured this in a day.
  • Amanda Cresse
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars
  • Destiny Henderson
    January 1, 1970
    3.5
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