Burd, Nick. The Vast Fields of Ordinary. Dial Books, May 2009. 9780803733404.309p . Grades 10-12.
In his last summer before college, Dade is busy juggling his dysfunctional parents and his dysfunctional boyfriend when he meets Alex, and discovers in him a way to make it through the summer.
Nick Burd’s first offering is a young adult novel full of the highs and lows of closeted suburban teen life. Dade’s last summer before college is his last chance to resolve his issues with Pablo, his ‘straight’ boyfriend, and come to terms with the state of his parents’ marriage. Along the way, he learns to cope with a new crush, coming out, and the joys of working at Food World. The writing and story are equally engaging, although a subordinate side story never succeeds in being very relevant to the novel. Nick Burd is definitely one to watch; I’ll be looking forward to more. – John Andrews