- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Dreamspinner Pr (Sept. 30 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1634762568
- ISBN-13: 978-1634762564
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.4 x 22.9 cm
- Shipping Weight: 358 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
The Body Paperback – Sep 3 2015
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About the Author
RJ Martin was a kid in the foothills of the Adirondack, a student at Skidmore and Columbia, and a man in Venice, CA and Brooklyn, NY. A true Gemini, he is as proud of being part of the LGBT community as he is of being a Christian, as happy at a baseball game as a Broadway musical, and as appreciative of a good pinot noir as a frothy IPA. He would never want to be without his dog, faith, books, friends, writing, hamburgers, bike, and family.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I could see where LGBT Christian youth would really enjoy this book. However, I think anyone who enjoys coming of age stories would appreciate the depth and beauty of this novel. And though this novel is considered YA, I think the literary style of the writing would also appeal to more discriminate readers.
I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and look forward to reading more from this talented and insightful writer.
R.J. Martin has created a touching novel of one boy's search for purpose. This is in no way a preachy book. I would think anyone, from any background; that appreciates a good coming of age story would enjoy this book. Jonah's dilemma is one that so many young people face. There is no shaming in this book. There are also no clear paths projected as the right answer. Rather, this is the story of one boy's deep faith being challenged through his own budding recognition of his true self.
This is a story about family, friendship, first love and finding a greater calling.
Personally, as someone who grew up in the church, I was left alienated and felt the church doors slammed in my face. I totally identified with Jonah's inner conflict and even fantasies of his greater calling to serve.
The Body- in every aspect, shows a positive approach to finding love and acceptance. It emphasizes that it is possible to both love who you are meant to love and contribute toward the good of all mankind-- effectively; even if it is not through the church.
I received an ARC copy from the publisher through NetGalley.
In THE BODY, RJ has reflectively taken on a coming of age/coming out novel and in doing so has accomplished what few authors have been able to do – write with conviction about the apparent schism between the beliefs of the church and the responses to self identity, especially sexual identity. Where many writes have not succeeded with this theme and where RJ shines is his ability to make his story raw and real while at the same time infusing it with humor and touching realism.
He offers a fine is brief synopsis: ‘The line separating flesh from spirit can be elusive….Teenaged altar boy Jonah Gregory’s faith is strong, even if some of his beliefs are unconventional. Jonah is certain Christ is gay, like him, and he knows the devotion he feels is mutual. His plans to become a priest are called into question when he meets Rusty Naylor, the closeted son of a famous romance novelist. Not only is Rusty attractive and charming, he could be Jesus’ twin. Jonah is torn between the calling of his soul and the desires of his body ― a distinction that grows more and more muddled since Jonah can’t look at Rusty without imagining the Lord, and vice versa. Worse yet, Jonah feels caught in a tug-of-war between them. As Jonah struggles to determine the course of his life, he’s aided by his parents, Rusty’s famous mother, a surly Father from Brooklyn, and the two men who hold sway over his heart: Rusty and the Lord.’
Not only is this a must read book for conflicted youths walking the maze of sexual identification, this book stands with the finest as a novel so well sculpted that it is bound to become not only popular, but also has a fine chance of being picked up as a film! Highly recommended. Grady Harp, December 15
Jonah's expanding realization of his sexuality, his capacity for love, and his awareness is an engaging tale. He addresses feelings and issues that I encountered when I was 15, and that I still wrestle with half a century later. I found it fascinating to explore his mental gymnastics in it as he attempted reconcile he is overly rigid religious practices, his awareness of his own conscience, his hidden sexuality, and his insights into the people who populate his world: Rusty, first his sister’s boyfriend and then his. In this tight little world, he becomes his own man, and, while never losing his beliefs, is directed by his conscience.