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Invisible Boys

Written by Holden Sheppard


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In a small town, everyone thinks they know you: Charlie is a hardcore rocker, who's not as tough as he looks. Hammer is a footy jock with big AFL dreams, and an even bigger ego. Zeke is a shy over-achiever, never macho enough for his family. But all three boys hide who they really are. When the truth is revealed, will it set them free or blow them apart?


‘This manuscript has tremendous energy and authenticity, as it explores what it is like to grow up gay in an insular regional community. Invisible Boys is a valuable contribution to the growing voices of younger LGBTIQA+ people.’
City of Fremantle T.A.G. Hungerford Award judges’ report

'Sheppard pulls no punches in this story, challenging expectations and taking the reader on a dark journey through each boy's life, with only a sliver of light at the end providing hope for a brighter future. This book feels somewhat unmoored from time, with a raw edginess ... which brings to mind books like Puberty Blues and the work of Tim Winton.' Junior Books + Publishing

'Invisible Boys is full of genuine, authentic voices ... This is an important book for all young people, as it shows one size does not fit all. There is no right way to be gay, or to be anything else, for that matter.' Magpies

'The book is immediately engaging and engrossing, exploring the lives of three diverse male teenagers dealing with their homosexuality ... [Invisible Boys] is distinctively Western Australian with a well-constructed and truly surprising climax. Sheppard will win himself a vast number of fans with this impressive debut.' DNA magazine

'… this debut novel is one of those books that only comes around once in a generation ... to think that a whole new generation of young queer readers will have the opportunity to see themselves in this book: that’s a powerful thought.' Out in Perth


2019 Kathleen Mitchell Award (Winner)
2018 City of Fremantle T.A.G.Hungerford Award (Winner)
2017 Ray Koppe Residency Award (Winner)

ISBN 9781925815566 (Paperback)
Formats B Format (198 x 130mm) (Paperback)
Categories Young Adult
Award Winning
New Releases
Publisher Fremantle Press
Edition 1st
Publication Year 2019
Pages 344
  • Holden sheppard web size

    Holden Sheppard

    Holden Sheppard is an award-winning Young Adult author born and bred in Geraldton, Western Australia. His debut novel, Invisible Boys, won the 2018 City of Fremantle T.A.G. Hungerford Award and the 2017 Ray Koppe Residency Award, and was Highly Commended in the 2018 ASA Emerging Writers’ Mentorship Prize.Holden’s novella ‘Poster Boy’ won the 2018 Novella Project competition and was published in Griffith Review. His true story ‘Fight, Deny, Delete’ was published in the 2019 Margaret River Press anthology Bright Lights, No City. Holden's short fiction has been published in page seventeen and Indigo, and he has also written for Ten Daily, Huffington Post, ABC, DNA Magazine and FasterLouder. He graduated with Honours from Edith Cowan University’s writing program and won a prestigious Australia Council ArtStart grant in 2015. Holden serves as the Deputy Chair of WritingWA, and as an ambassador for Lifeline WA.Holden has always been a misfit: a gym junkie who has played Pokemon competitively, a sensitive geek who loves aggressive punk rock, and a bogan who learned to speak French. Read more