elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Virginia Lovers by Michael Parker

Virginia Lovers is not yet another of those cute gay Young Adult novels most readers like, above all since, the gay character that I probably liked more, Brandon, is already dead when the novel begins.

Brandon was a gay teenager in a Southern small town in 1975… do I need to add something more to let you understand how difficult his life was? Brandon didn’t hide that he was gay, and from here and there I understood that he wanted an ordinary “teenager” life like all his peers, a boyfriend, a relationship, being loved… all of it was impossible for him, and for desperately trying to have it he was killed.

Daniel and Pete are brothers but they couldn’t be more different. Daniel is the perfect student, destined to great things, Pete is the bad boy that almost no one, maybe neither his parents, think will go far in his life. But Daniel and Pete were raised at the same way and given the same opportunities, so why they are so different? Maybe since Daniel is gay? Actually Pete didn’t know, and when he is told is also the moment when he apprehends who is Brandon’s killer.

Even if they don’t really like each other, at least not at that moment, Daniel and Pete understand they need to leave that town if they want to stay alive, and so they take the car his father gave them, and hightailed in Washington, where, for the first time, both of them have the chance to experiment the life out of that oppressive small town. But unfortunately it’s not running away that you can solve your trouble, and most of the time trouble finds you again.

There is a wonderful character and it’s that of Daniel and Pete’s father, Thomas. A reporter with big idea of social issues and human rights when he graduated, he is not managing the local newspaper, diluting the news to make them more digestible to the more conservative readers. It’s more important who is sponsoring the newspaper than who has rights to be defended. But Thomas will not close the eyes in front of the true, not this time, and not even since apparently his sons are involved in a murder. I’m not saying that he does everything right and in time, and sincerely, I found a little cold his attitude when drama will fall upon his family, but at least he will be able to support his family, and do the right thing in the end.

More than a gay novel, this is a family novel. True, Daniel is gay, but he is not the only main characters, a lion share goes to both his brother Pete than his father Thomas, and even if you will not listen her speak often, even his mother Caroline leaves to the reader the impression of a strong woman who loves her sons, despite all, or maybe given all.


Amazon: Virginia Lovers
Paperback: 195 pages
Publisher: Delphinium Books (September 6, 2005)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1883285275
ISBN-13: 978-1883285272

Reading List: http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle

Tags: author: michael parker, genre: contemporary, length: novel, review, theme: coming of age

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