Sanchez, Alex. Rainbow Boys. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2001.
This is my 100th post! Wow. That's a lot of books. Just think- in between reading all the fiction books at work, I also read adult novels just or me that never even get reviewed on here!
I can't believe it took me this long to get to this book. I had heard good things about it from some gay students at school but just never got around to reading it. Each chapter alternates between the three main characters.
Jason is on the basketball team and has been dating his girlfriend for years, but he has feelings for boys and doens't know what to make of them. His father is a violent alcoholic that screams and shouts and insults him and his mother, including calling him a "faggot" when he doesn't act as he wants him to act. He starts hanging out with Kyle because he needs help in Math, but it goes deeper than that. Kyle is gay but isn't out to his parents. When his parents find out, they freak out, particulary his father. Kyle has had a crush on Jason for years and is ecstatic when Jason turns up at a gay/lesbian support group. Nelson is Kyle's best friend but is in love with him. He is a little self centered. He is out to his parents and the student body. After Kyle rejects him, he has an encounter with an older man that doesn't end how he wants it to end. There is alot of homophobia. Nelson is frequently called "faggot" and encounters violence all the time. Kyle is attacked as well. Once people start to figure out Jason is gay, he also experiences discrimination.
I really enjoyed this book. It is a very strong story because it is told from the persepctive of three different gay teens, so we get multiple experiences about the same topic all in one story. I highly recommend this book to anyone, but particulary to gay or lesbian teens or anyone interested in learning more about it.