Drag Teen by Jeffery Self
Published by Push on April 26th 2016
A fantastic, fabulous, funny YA debut from Jeffery Self, one of the gay icons of the YouTube generation, that follows one high school student on a drag race to his future.
Debut YA author Jeffery Self takes us on a road trip with an insecure high school senior who has one goal: to be the first in his family to leave Clearwater, Florida, and go to college. The problem is, he has zero means of paying for school -- until his friends convince him to compete in a drag teen competition for a college scholarship.
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Genres: LGBT, Young Adult, Social Themes, Adolescence, Friendship, General, Social Issues
I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. I always endeavor to provide my honest opinion regardless of the source of the book and do not allow receiving a book for free to influence my opinions in any way for any reason.
In a world where young adult books seem to have become cookie cutter, here comes a novel that breaks the mold, steps out of the box and gives us something with a bit of diversity and maybe even a bit of controversy. Fair warning. Should you find yourself offended by drag queens and homosexuality, please walk away now. This is not the book for you. If, however, you are open-minded then continue to read on. Better still, know a teen in your life questioning their own sexuality or unsure about their own place in the universe, regardless of what role sexuality plays in that place? Definitely read on.
Drag Teen is one of those books that breaks the mold. I rated it at a 3.5 because the pacing could have been a bit better and some bits of the drag queen drama may have been a bit over-cliched for me. There was a little too much playing up of the hot gay guy versus the not so hot gay guy kind of situation for my liking and I wish that the author would have spent a bit more focusing on the inner beauty of it all because to me, that was the message that they were trying to get across.
Some of the characters were wonderfully developed, while others fell a little flat for me. While I loved the main character, JT, Seth kind of irritated me, but I can’t get into why without giving away plot points, so you will have to read, and then after you have, come back here and we can discuss my irritation with his main character flaws of hypocrisy.
In general, this was an interesting and fairly quick read that I was glad that I had the opportunity to give a try. I am glad to see authors stepping outside of the box and giving us something that will allow the youth of today a chance to connect with what is really in their hearts. We all need books that we can relate to, and there needs to be more of that in the fiction market.
What other areas of diversity do you think need to get more attention in fiction?