Goth Girl Rising

Goth Girl Rising

by Barry Lyga

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Time is a funny thing in the hospital. In the mental ward. You lose track of it easily. After six months in the Maryland Mental Health Unit, Kyra Sellers, a.k.a. Goth Girl, is going home. Unfortunately, she’s about to find out that while she was away, she lost track of more than time.

Kyra is back in black, feeling good, and ready to make up with the only person who’s ever appreciated her for who she really is.

But then she sees him. Fanboy. Transcended from everything he was into someone she barely recognizes.
And the anger and memories come rushing back.

There’s so much to do to people when you’re angry.
Kyra’s about to get very busy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780547417479
Publisher: HMH Books
Publication date: 10/19/2009
Sold by: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 926,781
File size: 778 KB
Age Range: 14 - 18 Years

About the Author

Barry Lyga is a recovering comic book geek and the author of The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl, Boy Toy, and Hero-Type, all set at South Brook High School. He currently lives in Las Vegas, where Spandex and capes aren’t just for superheroes. Visit Barry online at

Barry Lyga is a recovering comic book geek and the author of many books, including The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl, Goth Girl Rising, Boy Toy, and Hero-Type for HMH, Wolverine: Worst Day Ever for Marvel Books, and Archvillian for Scholastic. He has also written comic books about everything from sword-wielding nuns to alien revolutionaries. He worked as marketing manager at Diamond Comic Distributers for ten years. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.Visit Barry online at

Read an Excerpt


My mother and I both spent a lot of time in hospitals. Unlike her, I survived.

Before she went and died, my mom told me to stop bitching about my cramps all the time. "It’s nothing that every other woman on the planet hasn’t gone through," she said.

And besides, she went on, your period is a good thing. It’s a sign that you’re alive and healthy.

Easy for her to say—cancer was eating her lungs from the inside out, so what’s the big deal about some cramps, right?

Still, I knew that what I was experiencing wasn’t right or normal. It wasn’t what other girls were feeling every month. (I know—I asked around.)

Weird thing, though: After she died, my cramps sort of got better. It’s not like they went away; they just stopped being so intense and so consuming. I started to think that, OK, maybe this is what other girls felt. Like I had been abnormal before, but now I was somehow becoming normal, that now the world was working properly and everything was good and normal and usual.

Everything except my mom’s face . . .

My mom’s face before they closed the casket looked like a Barbie doll’s.

A Barbie doll someone had left in the sandbox too long.

All plasticky and too shiny, but somehow gray at the same time.

And then one day after the funeral—it was a pretty nice day, too—I took a box cutter from my dad’s workshop and slashed across my wrist. It hurt, but not that much. Not bad at all.

So I slashed the other one, too.

And that’s how I ended up in the emergency room and then in front of a judge and then locked up in a mental hospital.

That was my first time in the hospital. And I got out and I covered up my scars and I went on with my life and I tried to figure out what it was all about, and I’m still trying to figure it out.

But it just gets more and more complicated all the time. Every day. The world doesn’t slow down long enough for you to figure out anything; it keeps adding things in. Things like geeky guys and comic books and comic book conventions and effed-up teachers and . . .

And another stay in the hospital.

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Goth Girl Rising 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 52 reviews.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Kyra Sellers is back, and if people know what's good for them, they will keep their distance. Her mother has died of cancer, and even her special relationship with Fanboy couldn't keep her life from spiraling out of control. If he hadn't told her father about the bullet, her innermost thoughts would still be hers. After spending six months under psychological observation in a facility of her father's choosing, Kyra is back at home and expected to resume regular life. Her father has suicide-proofed the house so she can't even shave her legs, and all he wants is for her to behave herself at school. It all just reminds her of how much Fanboy let her down. He said he'd email and stay in touch, but she never received a single contact. Now she's learning that while she was gone, his life went on. He seems to be everyone's hero, and he's rewritten his comic and is actually choosing to publish it in installments in the school literary rag. Kyra uses her rebel skills to annoy everyone as much as possible. She refuses to be drawn into heartfelt conversations with her father. Instead, she blames him for her mother's death, and in an effort to shock him, shaves her head. As far as her behavior at school, it's nearly impossible to honor her promise to "be good." The teachers irritate her, the principal has unrealistic expectations, and Fanboy has been sucked into a situation with his comic that she just can't respect. Almost immediately, Kyra reverts to yelling matches with her father, sneaking out at night, and stealing cars. Plagued by memories of her mother's lingering death, Kyra fights the urge to seek help from her therapist and her friends. How far will she go before she hurts herself or others? Barry Lyga adds this sequel to THE ASTONISHING ADVENTURES OF FANBOY AND GOTH GIRL to his growing list of impressive YA fiction. What impressed me most about his creation was his ability to get inside Kyra's head to give readers a vivid view of her emotional upheaval. The suggested audience is 14 and up, which is sensible given its straight-forward, gritty characters and rough dialogue. However, this isn't in any way a fault of the book, since Lyga keeps true to the unique voice of Kyra that he created in the first Fanboy/Goth Girl book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book had potential, Kyra was going to get revenge on the "friend" that got her locked in a mental institute, yet the story is muddled with her letters to a comic book author in the middle of important parts. She is obsessed with the fact that she has grown breasts and her friends are harlots (the author has an obsession with teenage girls). The end is stupid. Kyra foolishly forgives those that betray her and she finds some idiotic reason not to committ suicide! All in all a disappointing read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As soon as I finished reading The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl I wanted a sequel. Well, I got one. And honestly, I'm disappointed. Something about this book really doesn't add up to me. There just wasn't anything about it that caught my interest like Lyga's other books. One of my biggest problems was the characters. Kyra was my favorite character in the first so seeing her actual thoughts here is...underwhelming, to say the least. She's very whiny. And I'm aware that she changes for the better in the end, but still. For the duration of the book I wanted to smack her , especially concerning Fanboy (who was much blander and not as frequent in this book) and her plotting. I also disagree with her being understandable. I was also put in a mental ward for suicidal thoughts and I was only in it a week. So why was she there for six months? Two weeks as an inpatient is considered lengthy from where I'm from. But I digress. All in all, I didn't like her at all in this book. Neither did I like her two friends, whom even Kyra didn't seem to like. They were shallow, stereotypical girls. The book just felt like it had bland characters with a whole lot of nothing. So, not bad, not good. Just...underwhelming.
ChelseaW More than 1 year ago
Warning: do not read this book without reading The Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl first. GOTH GIRL RISING picks up the story right where it left off. At least for Kyra (AKA Goth Girl). Back from her time in the mental hospital and still dealing with her mother's death, she wants nothing more than to get re-connected with Fanboy and her previous life. Unfortunately, Fanboy is not the person he used to be... My first thought when I started this book was that it felt so good to be back in Brookdale. It was great to see the same characters again, like The Spermling and Cal, and especially great to see the new Fanboy. It was also neat to see things from Kyra's perspective, and the close ties to Neil Gaiman's Sandman series is sure to please many comic book fans. GOTH GIRL RISING brings a harsh and brutally honest voice from a confused girl. At times she is downright unlikeable, and yet readers will find themselves wanting good things to happen to her. Though this book deals with issues like suicide and the death of a parent, it is also about hope and overcoming the things that can sometimes hold you back. A top notch follow-up from Lyga, and I would love to see more from these characters!
cowgirllibrarian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! The sequel is told through Kara aka Goth Girl. After a six-month stay at a mental hospital, Kara is released to find that the one friend she had has changed. Fanboy¿s comic was published. He now is confident and popular. Kara seeks revenge.
heathersblue on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is even better than the first book and a fantastic book for young adults. Kyra has returned home and is trying to get back in the swing of things after being sent away for trying to kiil herself. She and her father are both struggling over the death of her mother. An honest book about a teenager in pain trying to find her way the best she can. There are a few sexual moments that might make it better suited to older teens...but not that many and they are not terribly graphic. Fanboy just gets cooler and cooler.
krau0098 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the sequel to the "Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl". You wouldn't absolutely have to read the first book to understand whats going on in this one, but reading the first book gives you Fanboy's perspective on things and helps this book make a lot more sense. So, I guess I would recommend reading the first book before this one. This was a pretty darn good book by itself. I had a lot of trouble putting it down, Goth Girl is a very engaging character.After the incident with the bullet in the first book Kyra is sent to a mental ward. This book starts as she is returning back to school from the mental ward. When she returns to life "outside" she is peeved to find out that none of her friends have e-mailed her in the 6 months she was gone. She is especially pissed at Fanboy. When she goes back to school she finds that Fanboy has started publishing his graphic novel "Schemata" in the school newspaper and on top of that people actually like him now. The whole thing makes her even madder and she sets out to plot her revenge against Fanboy.Overall this book was paced much like the first one. This book is all from Goth Girl's view. Goth Girl spends a lot of time thinking and struggling with her rage throughout this book and dealing with her mother's death. The chapters are interrupted by occasional letters to Neil (Neil Gaiman) where she talks out the things that are bugging her. There are a boatload of references to Neil Gaiman's Sandman in here. I am a huge Gaiman fan so I enjoyed those references. There was also a lot of discussion around what different parts of the Sandman novels actually mean; it makes me want to go back and read them all more carefully to see what I missed.I thought that this story wasn't quite as good as "The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl" in a couple of aspects. Goth Girl spends a lot of the beginning of the book complaining about her big breasts and how people notice them too much. Way too much time is spent on this. I started scanning the parts of the book where she just spends too much time on this. I also thought it took way too long for Goth Girl to come to some of the revelations that she came to; it made her come off as a little dim at parts. I know Fanboy is super smart, but I never thought Goth Girl was stupid and there are parts of this book where she acts pretty stupid (although smarter than her girlfriends).Still, overall I really enjoyed the story. This is another one of those young adult books that talks about how young adults deal with anger and with the crappy hand that life deals them. I am sure many people can relate to this book. Kids who have lost a close loved one will relate with a lot of the feelings Kyra (Goth Girl) deals with. The thing I love most about this book is that the writing is witty and snappy. This book makes reading about all the heaviness in Kyra's life kind of fun for the most part. I really do enjoy Lyga's writing style.Will I be reading more Lyga books? Not for a while; just because I prefer fantasy/paranormal books to angst ridden young adult books. I will definitely check out some more of his books when I am in the mood for some more young adult drama.
grabbingsand on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
While not as strong as Lyga's other Brookdale novels, GGR was a worthwhile read.
kperry on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
By the time GOTH GIRL RISING hits the shelves it will have been three years since THE ASTONISHING ADVENTURES OF FANBOY AND GOTH GIRL was published. For those that haven¿t read it, do so now! You will probably enjoy GOTH GIRL RISING even without the backstory from TAAFGG, but not nearly as much as you could if you take the time to read it.Unlike TAAFGG, this story is told from Kyra¿s point-of-view. Six-months have passed since the last time we saw her. Because of something that happened at the end of FANBOY, Kyra was sent to stay at the Maryland Mental Health Unit. GOTH GIRL picks up on the day she is released.Kyra is both relieved and nervous to be going home. Dealing with her father is tough and the thought of going back to school turns her stomach upside down. But, she is excited about one thing and that is seeing Fanboy. Here is a what she is thinking when she is walking into the school her first day back and she is looking for Fanboy. ¿I feel all light and puffy inside, like someone filled me up with a cloud or something. The Spermling doesn¿t bother me. Roger doesn¿t bother me. I¿m going to find Fanboy and then everything is going to be fine. No wait, that¿s wrong. Everything is going to be perfect.¿ (p. 35)What Kyra finds is not what she expects and her world is shaken again. She begins to fill her days with plans of revenge and ways to ruin Fanboy. Thoughts of suicide find their way back into her head and she struggles to make it through each day. So many things are confusing: her feelings toward a long time friend, her relationship with her father, the way she feels about her mother¿s death, and her plans for Fanboy.Through letters she writes to her favorite author, Neil Gaiman, Kyra works through her many emotions in an attempt to be satisfied with life. She just can¿t decide if it is worth all the trouble.
macii on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Anything by Barry Lyga is great! Perfect for young adults.
lauriebrown54 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Six months after the end of The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl, Kyra- the goth girl- is getting out of the mental hospital. Sent there because it was wrongly thought she was going to try and kill herself (something she *had* tried before), she is angry at everyone. Not that this is unusual for her- she was pretty much angry at everyone before she was sent away, too. But now her anger is amped up to the nth power, and most of it is directed at Fanboy, who she did not receive a single phone call, visit, text or email from during the entire six months. Fanboy must be destroyed. Her father, who sent her away, must be punished. Where did Kyra¿s anger originate? Her mother died of cancer when Kyra was 12, when Kyra started puberty the same day her mother found out how ill she was. Krya¿s mothering ended that day, and she never got any assurances about her body. To make things worse, her mother, who never smoked, died of lung cancer. Kyra¿s father *did* smoke, so she is totally alienated from him. Thankfully, Kyra does have a couple of friends among the goth set, but even they don¿t get what she has gone through. Nobody does. She trusts no one, which makes Fanboy¿s betrayal even worse- she had started to trust him. While Kyra is portrayed as an annoying teen with lots of issues, Lyga handles her character very well. He captures a teen girl¿s body issues and quest for identity. Her anger is justified- although, at times, misdirected. But Kyra is not stuck; she is working through her problems. Unlike her somewhat flat characterization in Astonishing Adventures, she has a lot of dimension and depth. The best part, to me? Her piercings, blue lipstick, hair dye and black clothing aren¿t portrayed as acting out, but as things that truly make her comfortable with herself. While this is another coming of age novel like Astonishing Adventures, I feel it¿s more enjoyable by adults that AA is. Things don¿t just happen to Kyra; she *makes* things happen. She takes things on. Her methods are unconventional- sometimes illegal- but she gets things done. And she learns.
Twig687 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
NOT for the faint of heart....
BookWhisperer on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the story of a very confused and sick young girl. After the lose of her mother she is quite distraught with the path her life is taking. After having been admitted to a psychiatric hospital she is returning home to start over. Only what she encounters is a life that continued without her, and the plans that Kyra had made to start over are not playing out as she had planned. Kyra is a young girl that is mad at the world for what her life has become, and it takes so difficult and terrifying steps for her to overcome the slump she is living in. I did not relate while reading this book in any shape or form. It terrifies me to think that young people can be lost in their own minds as Kyra was in this particular book. Goth Girl Rising did not begin with a Once Upon a time, and certainly was not concluded with a Happily Ever After but I was comfortable with the outlook of a brighter future in the end. This was not the best book I have read, but surely not a waste of time I would say you need to take a look for yourself.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
To me i think gothic people are cute though they get my heart beating when im around that " one" i mean im not goth myself but i have emo friends ^_^
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book im also goth
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its leah manager wateves my bios at sex res 1 so i need two bartenders and dj plus i need table dancers interviews at res 2
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Is this the forth or second book?
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