This is the story of Paul, a sophomore at a high school like no other: The cheerleaders ride Harleys, the homecoming queen used to be a guy named Daryl (she now prefers Infinite Darlene and is also the star quarterback), and the gay-straight alliance was formed to help the straight kids learn how to dance.
When Paul meets Noah, he thinks he’s found the one his heart is made for. Until he blows it. The school bookie says the odds are 12-to-1 against him getting Noah back, but Paul’s not giving up without playing his love really loud. His best friend Joni might be drifting away, his other best friend Tony might be dealing with ultra-religious parents, and his ex-boyfriend Kyle might not be going away anytime soon, but sometimes everything needs to fall apart before it can really fit together right.
This is a happy-meaningful romantic comedy about finding love, losing love, and doing what it takes to get love back in a crazy-wonderful world.
In this delightful young adult novel for readers 12 and up, high school sophomore Paul says, "There isn’t really a gay scene or a straight scene in our town. They got all mixed up a while back, which I think is for the best." And, as he observes at the end of the story, "It's a wonderful world." Paul has both gay and straight friends, and they all hang out together at terrific bookstores and concerts, and advise one another on the sometimes troubled progress of their various romances. Paul is smitten with Noah, and they are beginning a serious relationship when Kyle, Paul’s ex, complicates things by deciding that all is forgiven. Joni is going out with Chuck, who dominates her, much to her friends' disapproval. Tony’s conservative parents refuse to acknowledge that he is gay, so the others must bone up on Bible verses all week so they can pretend Saturday night is a study group. And then there's Infinite Darlene, football quarterback and Homecoming Queen, who deserves a whole romance novel of her own. Life in their town is gloriously accepting of differences and only occasionally verges on magic realism, in this first novel in which same sex preference is not the problem. --Patty Campbell