In a time when much of the country sees red whenever the subject of gay marriage comes up, Dan Savage—outspoken author of the column Savage Love—makes it personal.
Dan Savage’s mother wants him to get married. His boyfriend, Terry, says “no thanks” because he doesn’t want to act like a straight person. Their six-year-old son, D.J., says his two dads aren’t “allowed” to get married but that he’d like to come to the reception and eat cake. Throw into the mix Dan’s straight siblings, whose varied choices form a microcosm of how Americans are approaching marriage these days, and you get a rollicking family memoir that will have everyone—gay or straight, right or left, single or married—howling with laughter and rethinking their notions of marriage and all it entails.
“The strongest argument here, which [Savage] brilliantly plays down, is that family means everything to these people: married, not married, blended, gay, straight, whatever.” (Washington Post)
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This is much more a sequence of connected essays than a novel or story, centred around Dan Savages and his male partner Terry's plans for a 10 years together celebration.
There were a few chapters in the middle where the serious overtook the fun and non US readers may find the references to various political names a little glazing, but for the most part there is a great deal of humour and a lot of insight into being gay in the US and into getting married.
At the time of writing (2004) the US legislature at least, in many, perhaps most of its states regarded homosexuals as second class citizens, and that is probably being generous. I don't know how much has changed there. This is one of those books that would really benefit from a few minutes of appendix at the end with an "update" from the author. Perhaps Audible could note that this sort of "add-on" could be a much more realistic feature in the online downloadable world they trade in.
Well worth the read. If you are in Western Europe, it will certainly leave you wondering why the US thinks of itself as the land of the free, at least for some 10% of if citizens!
- Amazon Customer
A great insight into gay parenting!
This is a book of three parts. The first is a bit dull, outlining the circumstances of Savage's life leading up to the 'big question' after ten years with his partner: Should we marry? The vignettes about Savage's family aren't hugely interesting, but they're valuable for context. The middle section is Savage talking about the 'gay marriage debate' in the US, and is interesting as it shows the fire in his argument, and the final section - the most entertaining - tells us 'what happened next'. All in all, worth reading.