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These Things Happen by Richard Kramer
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These Things Happen (edition 2012)

by Richard Kramer

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6710178,380 (3.45)None
Member:Florinda
Title:These Things Happen
Authors:Richard Kramer
Info:Unbridled Books (2012), Hardcover, 272 pages
Collections:Your library, Review copies
Rating:****
Tags:read, fiction, blog tour, 2012review, 3.75/5

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These Things Happen by Richard Kramer

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Couldn't get through the first quarter of the book

A domestic story told in numerous original and endearing voices. The story opens with Wesley, a tenth grader, and involves his two sets of parents (the mom and her second husband, a very thoughtful doctor; and the father who has become a major gay lawyer/activist and his fabulous "significant other" who owns a restaurant).

Wesley is a fabulous kid, whose equally fabulous best friend Theo has just won a big school election and simultaneously surprises everyone in his life by announcing that he is gay. No one is more surprised than Wesley, who actually lives temporarily with his gay father and partner, so that he can get to know his rather elusive dad. When a dramatic and unexpected trauma befalls the boys in school, all the parents converge noisily in love and well-meaning support. But through it all, each character ultimately is made to face certain challenges and assumptions within his/her own life, and the playing out of their respective life priorities and decisions is what makes this novel so endearing and so special. ( )
  cjordan916 | Jan 4, 2016 |
These Things Happen is a big little book. A big little funny book. Two days, a handful of characters, a school, a restaurant, a cramped Manhattan apartment and a roof. We take a peek and Kramer opens up the world.
The skinny: Wesley, a sixteen-year old, is living with his gay dad and his long-term partner, George, as a way to get closer to his dad. Wesley’s mom is happily remarried. As the story begins, Wesley’s best friend, Theo, announces at school he is gay. The opening scenes between Wesley and Theo are worth the price of admission alone.
For me, this book is about parenting, in the broadest sense. We all pretty much agree on how to take care of babies and toddlers; it’s mostly feeding, cuddling and damage control. And during the grade school years, it’s much the same, plus a discussion about which parent really is better at math. But the older the kid gets, the trickier the job. How much truth are they ready for? (How truthful can I stand to be?) When do I peel off the bubble wrap and let them feel the jolts, suffer the bruises? And what do I do if my kid, at sixteen, is begging for answers, for guidance, and the only person strong enough to provide it isn’t his parent at all?
Kramer’s observations are nuanced and his attention is unwavering: a five-minute conversation can run twenty pages and when it’s done, you say, “No, it’s not time for lemon almond ricotta cake. Keep talking.” (Beware: This book will make you hungry.) With great patience and insight, Kramer shows us that the significance of words lies in the gaps between them, in the pauses during which we grapple with how to spell the truth. And no one understands this better than Wesley and George.
( )
  SonjaYoerg | Oct 1, 2014 |
Maybe this book appealed to many. I could see it from the reviews. It was because of the reviews that I forked out my money to buy this ebook. I regretted. I did not enjoy the way Kramer tell the story. In fact, I did not care about the coming-out. In fact, I did not care for any of the characters. There were way too much talking. ( )
1 vote starlight70 | Aug 1, 2014 |
Wesley and Theo are best friends. Theo wins the tenth grade election and during his acceptance speech comes out as gay. Wesley's father, Kenny, lives with his partner, George. Theo's questions: Is being gay a choice? When did you know? Theo and Wesley become targets of violence. Profound things happen; Questions are asked and answered, these things happen. ( )
  sar96 | Jan 2, 2014 |
Wesley and Theo are best friends. Theo wins the tenth grade election and during his acceptance speech comes out as gay. Wesley's father, Kenny, lives with his partner, George. Theo's questions: Is being gay a choice? When did you know? Theo and Wesley become targets of violence. Profound things happen; Questions are asked and answered, these things happen. ( )
  sar96 | Jan 2, 2014 |
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audiobook
added by gsc55 | editMM Good Book Reviews, Tams (Apr 14, 2014)
 
added by gsc55 | editOut in Print (Aug 8, 2013)
 
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Wesley, a tenth grader, tries to navigate through life, despite having divorced parents, a father who has come out as gay and a popular friend who also comes out as gay right after winning a school election.

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