Friday, February 19, 2010

The Vast Fields of Ordinary by Nick Burd

Burd, Nick The Vast Fields of Ordinary pgs. 320 Dial Language~R, Sexual Content~R; Violence~PG-13

Dade has only one summer left before he leaves his small Iowa town for college. It can’t come soon enough. His parent’s marriage is about to crumble and Dade knows his parents are just trying to stay together until he leaves. His secret relationship with Pablo is also on the rocks. . .but this doesn’t bother Dade as much as he thought it would. Dade is also deciding whether to come out of the closet. It seems his summer is going to be the worst ever until Dade meets Alex. Alex and Dade begin a relationship that starts with casual sex but quickly progresses to something deeper. This title could almost be considered “chick-lit” for gay teens. However, there is more depth and substance to this story that you expect.

This is NOT a book for conservative schools. In addition to swears including many, many ‘f’s, the language is just coarse. The characters frequently use recreational/illegal drugs. There are sexual encounters that while not extremely graphic allow the reader to definitely know what is going on! For example “I kept my face buried in Pablo’s pillow the entire time. When it was over, he stood by the bed and frowned at me. ‘I think I liked you better blond.’” I feel it is important for literature such as this to be accessible to teens, but I would leave that up to the public libraries to house and defend.

PUBLIC ONLY –OPTIONAL Allison Madsen~Teen Librarian-SJO Public Library

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