Picking a prom date is tricky, particularly when you can’t decide which sex to ask.
To any observer, high school senior Jamie Peterson, designer of the school literary magazine, coasts along with the support of a loving family, an uncommon level of popularity and the camaraderie of his longtime best friend, Mason. As the year draws to a close, he struggles with the eternal question: Whom will he ask to prom? The discovery that Mason is taking a girl makes Jamie jealous. Though Jamie is gay and out to his family (his parents demonstrate Boy Meets Boy utopian support), he isn’t out at school. When he realizes his jealousy and subsequent fantasies about dreamy Mason are reason enough to come out, he second-, third- and fourth-guesses himself, not wanting to ruin the friendship. A clutch of perceptive female classmates sees Jamie’s turmoil and roots for him to make a move, an enthusiasm that could ultimately humiliate both Jamie and Mason. Though the main characters are well-realized, a flood of minor characters introduced at the start of the book and sporadically thereafter proves more distracting than pertinent. The portrait of a half-in, half-out gay teen seen as confident by everyone but himself is touching, though the message to accept diversity is occasionally more didactic than encouraging.
A sweet, quasi–coming-out love story with a bass line tailored for art and design fanatics. (Fiction. 13-18)