Tales From Foster High
Title: Tales From Foster High (originally released as three short story titles: Maybe With a Chance of Certainty, The End of the Beginning, and Raise Your Glass)
Author: John Goode
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Number of Pages: 240 (paperback)
Advertised Age Level: Not specified
Age and Grade of Main Character(s): 17 – seniors in high school
Language: use of profanity, use of the “f” word
Sex: kissing, moderate descriptions of some sexual acts
Drug/Alcohol Use: references to one character drinking and getting drunk, parents consume alcohol, reference to parent smoking marijuana
Violence: main characters get in fist fights, one character is beaten by a group of boys, father strikes son
Social Issues: homosexuality, coming out, bullying, homophobia, discrimination, child abuse, child neglect
Suggested Movie Grade: R
Kyle Stilleno has floated through his high school years as a socially invisibly outsider, a smart kid who tries his best to avoid drawing any attention to himself. Brad Greymark has lived his life in the spotlight, a popular jock who uses his outwardly perfect life to hide the fact that at home, his father seems to take pleasure in tormenting his son, emotionally and physically. Neither Kyle nor Brad can predict the way their respective lives will completely implode when the two boys begin studying together and act on an attraction that everyone in their world will condemn. As they each come out of the closet and begin to live lives as openly gay teenagers, they face bullying, discrimination, ridicule and physical danger. The only joy they find is with each other.
Potential Points of Concern: This story deals with homosexuality and the coming out of two gay teenage boys.
Kyle and Brad kiss and engage in other sexual activities. Descriptions are not overly explicit but are clearly described.
Brad’s father physically and verbally abuses him. Kyle’s mother is an alcoholic who uses drugs and has many boyfriends. She often neglects Kyle who is left on his own much of the time. Kyle’s father is not a part of his life.
Once Kyle and Brad come out of the closet, they are verbally ridiculed. Brad is beaten by some teammates. Both boys get into fights. One school administrator tells the boys that what they are doing is a sin and an abomination.
Brad is thrown off the baseball team because other boys do not want him to change in the boys’ locker room.
Age Appropriateness: 14 +