Hyena Boy

The Neva Aton Collection

Fiction - New Adult
216 Pages
Reviewed on 04/08/2020
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Ila Golden was born in Plymouth, England, the second of three children. When she was six her maternal grandmother had a series of strokes which left her permanently disabled. As a result of this she and her family moved in order for her grandmother to live with them, selling both their home and their grandmother's home in the process. During this transitional period Ila discovered her love of storytelling whilst telling her younger brother stories about two little mice during the long car journeys to school and back.

As she grew this love of storytelling became a constant rock in her life, despite all the turmoil and changes happening around her. And it was during her teens she would begin work on the two stories that would drive her ambition forward and eventually lead her down a path towards Indie-Authordom.

The first of these two stories was Hyena Boy, which would undergo years of on and off attention before finally being published in 2018. The second was a fanfic which gave her insight into why she loved writing - for the enjoyment of the readers, especially those she was able to connect with.

Ila Golden went to university in Winchester, England, where she studied Drama and Creative Writing, leaving with a 2:1 degree.

With a large backlog of unpublished books at her disposal, Ila Golden may not yet be the best selling author she dreams of being, but she's now more than ever determined to reach that goal.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Hyena Boy is a work of fiction in the young adult/new adult coming of age sub-genre and was penned by author Ila Golden. Forming another part of the Neva Aton Collection, we examine the life of another young man from the same central friendship group and the challenges he has to deal with as he continues his journey from boy to man. In this volume, we meet Jay Peters, who has experienced a harrowing life so far living under the roof of his father. At seventeen, Jay will be able to move out, so he begins the task of chronicling his life up to date in order to put it all away and start afresh, alone in the adult world.

The work contains some sensitive content such as abuse, violence, sex, and language, but I find that author Ila Golden uses it to recount an authentic teenage experience, particularly of life in the late 1960s. The period feels apt for Jay’s struggles before the watchful eyes of social workers popped up everywhere and times were physically harder. Golden evokes a beautiful sense of emotional atmosphere through the descriptions of both place and person, and the close narration allows us an intimate portrayal of Jay’s mental state as he prepares to cut the ties which bind him to his past experiences. What results is a sweeping and evocative book with some beautifully intimate moments, and I would definitely recommend Hyena Boy to readers seeking deep and meaningful coming of age fiction.