Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Vast Fields Of Ordinary

By Nick Burd

It's the summer before his first year of college, and Dade is dealing with a lot. He has a crappy job at Food World, his parents are getting a divorce, and the guy he's been dating is a closet case. But then he meets the mysterious Alex, and Dade gets to come out - and fall in love - real love!

Oh, and there's drinking, smoking pot, sex, and a tragedy... all of which adds up to quite a summer.

"The Vast Fields Of Ordinary" won the first-ever Stonewall Book Awards Children's and Young Adult Literature Award for 2010, awarded by the GLBT Round Table of the American Library Association.

Add your review of "The Vast Fields Of Ordinary" in comments!


Unknown said...

I just had to go look up my review of this one, and it turns out part of my review came true: I predicted this wasn't a title that was going to stick with me, and here it is, two months later, and I had to double check what my thoughts originally were!

I thought this was an okay novel - though I really liked Lucy, the lesbian sidekick. However I didn't think it really added anything new.

Ralph Gallagher said...

Title: The Vast Fields of Ordinary
Author: Nick Burd
Series: N/A
Rating: 4/5 stars

This novel is about Dade Hamilton's last summer at home. He goes to parties, goes to work and meets a few friends. The boy he's fooling around with pretty much dumps him and he meets a new boy named Alex who he falls in love with.

Okay, I liked this book overall but there were a lot of things I didn't like about it. I think there were too many side plots going on and none of them were really developed at all. The whole thing with Jenny Moore was weird, and didn't really have anything to do with the story line. The problems between his parents was also weird and pretty anti-climactic.

I didn't much like the ending either. It seemed rushed and was also a bit anti-climactic. The author had some interesting ideas for the ending, but he kinda just crammed them all together in an overview plot summary. The ending leaves you with a lot of questions - What happened to Jenny? What happen with Pablo? What happened with Alex?

It also seemed like some of the characters were bipolar. One minute they wanted to be his best friend, and then next they were bitching and yelling at him. Pablo and "Fessica" (A crappy name IMO) in particular. The whole scene with Pablo in the milk cooler was unnecessary too. (Don't forget creepy.)

But for some reason, I liked the book over all. I enjoyed Dade's relationship with Alex, and I could relate to some of the things he was going through. The novel was well written, free of any blaring grammatical or punctuation mistakes. Once I got through the first chapter or two, it was a pretty engaging novel. =)

(From: )

Jonathon Arntson said...

"The Vast Fields of Ordinary" is somehow the only gay-lit book I've ever been able to relate to. I haven't fallen in love with a cute guy, I don't drink or smoke pot to numb my feelings, I didn't grow up in a family with money at their disposal, but I did grow up. I suppose I am still in the process of growing up and that became highlighted when I finished "TVFofO", last night at 2:30 AM.

The story manages to parallel that of many other YA novels, but each situation is under a light of a different color. I am not out of things to say, I am just out of ways to say them.

Essentially I loved this book and I recommend to people of all ages, its just simply great writing and the characters are so tangible.

(read and written 1-10-2010)

Kristi said...

It's interesting that the reviews on here so far have been so-so, because I really enjoyed this one and thought it was one of the better YA books published last year.

Jonathon Arntson said...

Mine wasn't so-so, TheVFofO is my fourth favorite book of the moment.

Katrina said...

I saw this book on a website and had to go and read it. I love it! I couldn't put it down. I wouldnt read books more than once but this one i will.