Cheeseburger Subversive

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Thistledown PressMcNally RobinsonChapters/Indigo • Amazon CA US

(also available on iBooks, Follett, Overdrive, Baker and Taylor)


Awards & Honours

Shortlisted for the 2004 Canadian Library Association Young Adult Book of the Year
Shortlisted for the 2005 Ontario Library Association White Pine Award
Shortlisted for the 2005 Red Cedar Teen Reader’s Choice Award
Selected for the 2004 Canadian Children’s Book Centre Our Books annual guide


Cheeseburger Subversive is a coming of age story written with humour and panache. Scarsbrook has a special eye for the absurd, a wonderful way of looking at the world that turns tragedy into humor. A very funny and heart-warming debut.”
– W.P. Kinsella, author of Dance Me Outside and Shoeless Joe (basis for the movie, Field of Dreams), in Books in Canada

“Scarsbrook has nailed the Canadian teenage boy’s insecurities, victories over bullies and persistent sexual longing to the wall. In a laugh-out-loud-funny style laced with witty, sardonic remarks by our hero, Dak, Scarsbrook brings alive the pain of rejection, the excitement of real friendship and the ache of a lost love. ”
– Joan Marshall, Canadian Review of Materials
4/4 stars, “Highly Recommended”

“Highly recommended.”
– David Jenkinson, Canadian Children’s Literature

“This coming of age novel is a brilliantly funny revved-up romp – part Catcher in the Rye, part Happy Days.”
AECB, Selected Canadian Titles for American Libraries

Cheeseburger Subversive is a perceptive and memorable book. The title story will make you laugh out loud! ‘Benjamin’s Aliens’ will disturb you. ‘Tristan’s Quarter’, the last story in the book, will have you eagerly awaiting the sequel, Featherless Bipeds.”
What If? Magazine

“This book is funny, funny, funny! I laughed out loud … and I was constantly harassing people, saying, ‘Listen to this! Listen to this!’ ”
– Maggie L. Wood, Reviewer, author of The Princess Pawn

“Although edgy and at times profane, the stories included in Richard Scarsbrook’s Cheeseburger Subversive are highly recommended. Each story enrich(es) the others in a way that is sharp and controlled.”
The Saskatoon StarPhoenix

“To say Cheeseburger Subversive is a coming-of-age tale misses what makes the novel so much more than that … the theme of personal politics at boy’s eye-level makes Scarsbrook’s novel unique.”
– Paul A. Toth, author of Fizz

“This is one of the funniest books I’ve read in a long time. Even the titles of the chapters will reach out and grab your attention. Richard Scarsbrook has created a book that has it all.”
– Lascha Belanger, Saskatchewan Publishers Group

Cheeseburger Subversive is certain to be enjoyed by readers of all ages. The writing, which is Scarsbrook at his best, is often the type you want to read aloud to others.”
Storyteller: Canada’s Short Story Magazine

Cheeseburger Subversive brims over with well-realized and poignant scenes, keenly observed details, and light-handed humour.”
Quill and Quire

“Through Dak, a character ahead of his years, the reader experiences life as it truly is, filled with both hilarity and trying times.”
– Patricia A. Carvacho,

Cheeseburger Subversive is a rare book … Scarsbrook dresses up his ‘cheeseburger’ with lots of spicy pickles and tangy mustard, without being afraid of adding a meaty message.”
– Lian Goodall, The St. Catharines Standard-Spectrum

“This book is laugh out loud funny, but still manages to be touching and dramatic. Read it. You’ll thank me.”
– Andrea Raymond, Editor, Surface and Symbol

“Richard Scarsbrook enters the world of his young protagonists through the front door, and rivals the best writers in the country in cunning and humour. Truly an exciting new voice in Canadian fiction.”
– Jesse Stothers, Editor