"Bobby Framingham, a 17-year-old senior at Durango High School in Orange County, Calif., is struggling. He's highly recruited and one of the most talented players in the state, but Bobby also knows he's different than his teammates. They're like brothers, but they don't know one thing: he's gay. Can he still be one of the guys while being honest about who he is? And how will the girl who thinks she's dating him take to the news?"
Bill Konigsberg answers these questions and more in his new novel Out of the Pocket.
Konigsberg, an openly gay sports writer who won a GLAAD Media Award for his ESPN.com article entitled "Sports World Still a Struggle for Gays," writes about the experience of being an openly gay athlete.
The book excels not only because of its inclusive subject matter, but because of its focus on the sport itself. In his writing, Konigsberg includes just enough lingo that shows he knows his stuff while keeping from overwhelming readers who might not be football fans.
Konigsberg wrote on Outsports.com's website that, although the book is a work of fiction, many of the attitudes expressed by the characters are based off interview with real high school athletes.
The book is written for young adults, but it doesn't mean that adults won't find it a compelling read.
The School Library Journal writes:
"The sports-action sequences are well drawn and engaging, and the bond among teammates is strong. Character interactions are believable and often surprising, and Bobby is a likable narrator. A few repetitive scenes are a small price to pay for a thought-provoking, funny, and ultimately uplifting story of self-actualization that masterfully defies stereotypes about both coming out and team sports."
It's also been placed on the Children's Indie Next List, a list compiled from independent booksellers.
Konigsberg is currently launching a nationwide book tour to promote Out of the Pocket. Check below for upcoming dates and locations.
The Oct. 10 reading at Barnes & Noble in NY will serve as the book launch.
Oct. 5/6 - Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY
Oct. 7 - Wellesley High School
Oct. 7 - Wellesley Booksmith, Wellesley, MA, 7pm
Oct. 10 - Barnes & Noble, 83rd St and Bway, New York, NY, 6pm
Oct. 11 - Giovanni's Room, Philadelphia, PA, 5:30pm
Oct.19 - Red Balloon Bookshop, St. Paul, MN
Oct. 20/21 - Macalester College, St. Paul, MN
Oct. 23 - Watermark Books, Wichita, KS, 7pm
Oct. 31 - Nov. 2 - Texas Book Festival, Austin, TX
Nov. 1 - Book People/Book Kids, Austin, TX, 7pm
Nov. 10 - Arizona State Homecoming English Dept., Tempe, AZ, 6pm
Nov. 13 - Books, Inc., San Francisco, CA, 7:30pm
Nov. 14 - A Different Light, Los Angeles, CA, 7:30pm
Nov. 15 - Changing Hands Bookstore, Tempe, AZ, 7pm
Nov. 29 - Clinton Book Shop, Clinton, NJ, 12pm
Dec. 11 - Books & Books, Coral Gables, FL, 7pm