Beast: A Novel Summary & Study Guide

Brie Spangler
This Study Guide consists of approximately 39 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Beast.
This section contains 578 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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Beast: A Novel Summary & Study Guide Description

Beast: A Novel Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz on Beast: A Novel by Brie Spangler.

The following version of this book was used to create this study guide: Spangler, Brie. Beast. Alfred A. Knopf. First Edition, October 2016.

Beast is a young adult novel of acceptance and romance by Brie Spangler in which the physically large and unattractive 15-year-old Dylan falls in love with pretty, 15-year-old transgender Jamie. Dylan narrates the story, explaining how he came to fall in love with Jamie, and how he almost lost her. For years, Dylan explains, he has been the target of cruel nicknames like “Beast” because of his gigantic nature. He is huge, muscly, and very hairy. Dylan hates his abnormal growth and excess hair, though he tries to focus on the good such as being best friends with the popular JP. JP is not, however, a good best friend, as he too refers to Dylan as “Beast” and uses Dylan as enforcement in his money-loaning business. JP also pays Dylan’s barber to shave Dylan’s head when Dylan only asks for a contemporary cut. Angered about this, Dylan storms home where he notices a lost football on the roof, and heads out to retrieve it to get some fresh air. He then slips, falls, and breaks his leg.

Dylan is thought to be depressed, so he is sent to a therapy group. There, he meets a tall, pretty girl named Jamie who loves to do photography. She and Dylan take an immediate interest in one another, begin hanging out, and kiss. It is JP, however, who points out that Jamie is actually transgendered. This shocks Dylan, who is straight. Things get worse when JP announces to the school that Dylan is dating a transgendered girl after Dylan overreacts to JP’s initial attempts at being supportive. This leads to a fight between JP and Dylan. Dylan reconnects with Jamie, who explains that she is not really a guy, but actually a girl and is transitioning. Dylan struggles with this, but decides to keep seeing Jamie. However, Dylan’s mother becomes an obstacle for Dylan when Dylan becomes irresponsible, refusing to check in with her, and worrying her by dating Jamie – not because Jamie is transgender, but because Dylan is already dealing with so much else in his life at the moment.

Still, Dylan continues to see Jamie while avoiding attempts at reconnecting with JP. Dylan and Jamie come to a deeper understanding with one another, accepting one another for the circumstances in which they find themselves, but agreeing they must be a part of one another’s lives, and accepting there is a romantic attachment between them. When Dylan’s mom goes away for the weekend and comes back to discover Jamie has spent the night, she sends Jamie home and grounds Dylan. When Dylan subsequently learns that blood tests he has taken reveal he does not have gigantism – which he hoped could be treated to stop his growth and avoid the cancer that killed his father – Dylan believes he has done something wrong by being with Jamie, so he does not speak to her for months. Only JP’s efforts to bring them back together get them to talk again, though Dylan still wants nothing to do with JP. Dylan and his mom finally come to common ground, in which Dylan will be given greater freedom if he proves he is responsible. Jamie ultimately forgives Dylan, and the two end the novel holding hands, a sign they are back together.

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This section contains 578 words
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