A VERY TOUCHY SUBJECT by Todd Strasser

A VERY TOUCHY SUBJECT

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A lot of this book is about a very touchy subject--sex. Get it? Touchy? Oh, well. I just want to say that if all you're looking for are graphic scenes of people undressing, and a lot of dirty words, you might as well stop reading now."" Scott Tauscher, Todd Strasser's 17-year-old narrator-protagonist, is right. His story isn't sexy at all, though there are a lot of comments from him and his buddies about hormones and the torture of going without. Scott has a beautiful, rich girl friend, but lately they are always fighting the same fight. (""If you really loved me, you would."" ""If you really loved me, it wouldn't be important."") So they finally break up, as Scott's attention wanders to sexy 15-year-old Paula next door, whose greaser boyfriend he sees climbing out of her bedroom window every morning. At first Scott's attention is drawn to Paula's ""bod,"" but soon he is viewing her as a poor kid who needs help escaping her sluttish rep and her drunken, abusive mother. And so when he is presented with the ""golden opportunity""--an invitation to join Paula in her sleeping bag--Scott says no. By then Paula is on her way to live with her father and change her ways (""Maybe I'll buy all new clothes. Things that aren't so flashy.""), and Scott doesn't want to set her back. Strasser fleshes out this conventional exemplar with peer and family interactions, but the viewpoint never transcends the snobby virgin/troubled slut stereotypes.

Pub Date: April 12th, 1985
Publisher: Delacorte