Book of David by David LevithanThe Book of David by Anonymous. Simon Pulse, 2014.

David is the quarterback on the football team, has a cheerleader as a girlfriend, and Tyler has been his best friend forever. If he has all the things a high school boy should want, why does he feel so weird about it? Tyler has angry outbursts and their friendship feels more like a competition. Monica, his girlfriend, is always saying she wants to mess around, but then stops right when it gets good. And there is a new kid in town who takes his breath away. Only that kid is a boy. Jon moved from Chicago, sits across from David (and Tyler) in English, impresses his parents with his singing and hunting skills, and is in the musical with Monica. Everyone loves Jon except for Tyler. Tyler’s wrath haunts David as he falls for Jon. With Tyler as a “best friend,” there’s only so long before his secret is out. Read the details of David’s racing mind as he record it in the journal that his English teacher makes everyone keep, but then turns into an outlet of what he can’t tell anyone else, especially in the south and its customary rejection of homosexuals.
This is written in the style of Go Ask Alice and it is realistic fiction taking place in contemporary times. It’s a little high school cliché and coming out cliché, but I like that you can hear David’s thought process and how he navigates life. You can get a feel for his desperation to maintain his happy life but try to be who he really is. The book is kind of whiny feeling and very jock-like, but I feel the average high schooler looking to get the real story will be pleased. It’s not deep by any means but explores a popular and tricky issue. I loved the ending parts that really show the consequences of being gay in a conservative southern town and how David works through that. Not all is sunshine and rainbows, but it’s also not all doom and gloom.

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