Falling in love with your best friend can’t turn out all right, can it?
Fifteen-year-old “Tretch” Farm goes by his nickname since he’s the third generation of Richards in the family. He realizes one Sunday in church that he’s in love with his best friend, Matt Gooby, who just happens to have two dads but who also happens to be straight. Matt’s a great friend, standing up for Tretch whenever necessary, especially against Tretch’s dad’s business partner’s son. Tretch’s mother’s still leery of the Goobys even though they are legally married, so Tretch can’t talk about the depth of his affection for Matt with his parents. He deals by being a good friend and helping Matt land the girl of his dreams. Tretch leads his mother to believe he’s dating a girl (who actually does have a crush on him), but he comes out to his supportive older brother, Joe. If only it were all as easy as that. Tretch, the narrator in Walton’s debut, successfully navigates the landmines of his life while learning about the secrets that adults keep. The whole is a wee bit melodramatic and perhaps a bit too rosy as well. However, LGBT teens can use more “a bit too rosy,” and the message that “it gets better, but it’s good now” is nicely communicated without being maudlin or preachy.
Realistic and at times touching, a nice addition to the literature. (Fiction. 12-16)