Savage’s memoir of his experience with adoption reveals an acid tongue and a boundless heart, a savvy blending of social commentary and self-deprecating humor, with an ending so sentimental that, in comparison to the beatific vision of Daddies Dan and Terry, June and Ward Cleaver would look like Al and Peg Bundy.
Known for his trenchant wit and outspoken attitude in his nationally syndicated sex advice column, Savage is the queer incarnation of Dorothy Parker and Dr. Ruth, with a little Dr. Laura Schlesinger thrown in for good measure. In The Kid, which he confesses he wrote primarily for the scads of money the publishers threw at him, his indefatigable tirades against homophobia and heterosexism are played off to delightful effect against the story of adopting baby Daryl Jude. Savage details the long and arduous adoption process that he and his boyfriend endured: the seminars with the adoption agency; the agony of waiting to be picked by a birth mother; the fears that she would change her mind and keep the baby; and the burgeoning relationship with both the birth mother and the baby’s biological father, who they thought would never appear. Along the way, Savage revels in his rejection of the sanitized and homogenized model of the innocuous homosexual and blatantly exposes all of his dirty laundry, from bondage to drugs, from messy housekeeping to strained relationships with some family members. He discloses this litany of character flaws because he wants to underscore the fact that imperfect people—even if they're gay—can be good parents.
A book of humor and heart and a vision of life lived fully, Savage paints a picture of an ideal home for his and his boyfriend’s child in its blemished humanity and right-on queerness; it’s a book that can’t be put down for the same reasons.