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Hear Us Out! Lesbian and Gay Stories of Struggle, Progress and Hope, 1950 to the Present

by Nancy Garden

Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007
227 pages
ISBN: 9780374317591

Age 12 and older

Podcast featuring this book

Garden’s collection of short stories about gay and lesbian teens is organized into six sections by decade, with two stories for each period. To provide context for the stories, each section opens with an excellent essay about what life was like for gays and lesbians in that particular time, including an account of major historical events and, in particular, what life was like for gay teens coming of age then. Taken on their own, these essays provide a succinct—and much needed—overview of U. S. gay and lesbian history for teens. The themes explored in the stories are those of concern to both gay and straight teenagers everywhere: fitting in at school, finding a boyfriend or girlfriend, falling in love, making decisions about sex, and establishing an independent identity. But for the gay and lesbian teens, there are the added concerns about coming out to friends and family, finding other gay and lesbian teens, and worrying about queer-bashing (and there are two very blatant instances of violence against gays in the stories that are included). The stories in the last two decades are by far the most upbeat, reflecting the major advances in our culture over the past twenty years. (KTH)  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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