Popular students Paul Carter and Adrian Vanderlaar enter their senior year full of the confidence and reckless bravado of boys sure of their place in the pecking order of high school. But Adrian drinks too much one night, and in a gruesome accident he is paralyzed and his girlfriend, Lauren, is killed.
|Publisher||Los Angeles, Calif.: Alyson, 2003|
|Subjects:||Teenage boys Fiction|
|Gay teenagers Fiction|
|Drunk driving Fiction|
|New Zealand writers|
|Classification||Young Adult Fiction|
The outpouring of grief in their school starkly contrasts with a decidedly more muted reaction to the gay-bashing murder of another fellow student, which the school administration uses as a cautionary lesson for the student body. Speaking out in defense of the murdered boy puts Paul on the outs with his classmates and ultimately causes Paul’s abusive fundamentalist father to kick him out of the family home.
Paul’s confusion as he tries to make his way in the creative world with the help of a local artist and Adrian’s struggle upon returning to school play out artfully against the backdrop of the boys’ senior year, Adrian’s upcoming trial for manslaughter, and Paul’s growing awareness of his sexuality.