Friday, January 25, 2008

Boy Toy

This title was brought to my attention because of a few list-serves I belong to. One is yalsa-bk and the other is a yahoo group called adbooks. Both are discussion lists for YA literature. I think it was yalsa-bk where the thread popped up about how incredibly graphic this novel was in depicting sex with a minor. Any good drama sucks me in as quick as can be so I ran to the shelf and grabbed it for my airport and flight time into Philly.

The crazy coincidental story that goes with this book review is that while I was reading Boy Toy in the airport, CNN was broadcasting out of the airport TVs that Debra LaFave had violated her parole. Good old Debbie is one of those HS teachers who was caught having sex with one of her students. Much like the character in Boy Toy. And THEN later in my hotel room I was watching the news and saw another teacher in trouble for sending nude photos of her self to her student's cell phone.

I have to say that I was not shocked by the sex scenes in this book. I realize that they are between an adult teacher and a 12-year-old boy but being so familiar with several stories (cough Mary Kay Letourneau) just like this, I found Barry Lyga's story to be compelling and adequately naughty.

What I didn't expect to find was such a heart-wrenching depiction of the now 18-year-old victim (Josh) having to come to terms with his perpetrator's early prison release.

The book was awesome. I hope Lyga wins awards for his bravery taking on this issue.

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