Do our labels define us? That’s a question Bill Konigsberg’s book ‘Openly Straight’ asks us. It is the story of Rafe who moves from Colorado to a New England all-boys boarding school wanting to start fresh. He has been the famously gay guy in his school and wants to be that guy who is just a guy, not defined by what label is attached to him. In the beginning, this really works out for him at Natick, his new school. But then, he falls in love, and that complicates matters, as you can just imagine.
Halfway through the book, I kept on shouting at Rafe’s character, no, no don’t go there, I have been there – you cannot fall in love without someone not gay. But of course, sexuality is really fluid, and Ben, his ‘best friend’ in his new school seem to be as confused about his orientation as well. I fell in love with the characters int his book, and found myself affected, and I may have even shed a tear or two. Very rarely do I get very emotionally involved in characters nowadays, but the ones here left a hole in my heart.