Author: Jon Derek Croteau
Source: TLC Book Tours
Links: Bookshop (affiliate link) |Goodreads
Summary: This was a tough read, but also engaging and eye-opening.
It was clear from an early age that Jon was not the athletic, all-American boy his father wanted him to be. His father responded with fear and hate, trying to change Jon with physical and emotional abuse. As a teenager, Jon’s internalized homophobia caused him to continue abusing himself, with eating disorders and excessive, unhealthy amounts of exercise. Only years later, by cutting his father out of his life and out of his head, was he able to come to terms with his sexual identity and to recognize that he deserved to be happy.
Like The War on Women in Israel, I expected this book to be frustrating and depressing to read. Fortunately, I was wrong once again. It was a difficult read and my heart ached for Jon as I read about his abusive childhood, but I also couldn’t set this book down. I think it helped that I knew Jon was writing this book from a better place in his life and I wanted to read as quickly as possible to get to the point where things worked out. The physical abuse also came across as less damaging then the mental abuse and the book wasn’t graphic at all.
This wasn’t the most enjoyable book I’ve ever read and I don’t think any book involving such tough topics ever will be. However, it was a very good book. It was well written and it opened my mind to someone whose life is different from my own. I like to think that if I ever encounter someone who needs the kind of support Jon needed from his friends, this reading experience will help me be there for them. This is such an eye opening book, I’d recommend it everyone.
For some other perspectives, check out the other stops on the tour.