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Rainbow Road Paperback – April 10, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 9 Up–The final installment of this trilogy is a true winner. Even though coming out publicly resulted in Virginia high school basketball star Jason Carrillo's losing his college athletic scholarship, it turned him into an important role model for gay and lesbian teens. And so, when a new GLBT high school in Los Angeles is searching for a keynote speaker for its opening ceremony, it is not surprising that Jason is given an all-expenses-paid invitation. His boyfriend, Kyle, definitely wants to be there, too. And Kyle's best friend–pink-haired, boy-hungry Nelson–has a car and thinks that this would be the perfect opportunity for a post-senior-year road trip. Virginia to L.A. by car: 3000 miles and plenty of time to gain an understanding of what being gay in America is all about. These boys are distinct personalities and genuine teens, searching for clarity and identity and acceptance, trying to make sense of themselves and a world that can be equally bright and dark. Sanchez writes with humor and compassion. Some mature romance scenes, occasional frank language, and an inclusion of transgender/transsexual/bisexual story lines translate into a tender book that will likely be appreciated and embraced by young adult readers.–Jeff Katz, Queens Borough Public Library, NY
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Gr. 9-12. The third and final novel about gay teen friends Jason, Kyle, and Nelson finds the boys on a road trip, driving across country from their D.C. homes to Los Angeles, where Jason has been invited to speak at the opening of an alternative high school. Along the way, the young men encounter a variety of people and situations that occasionally seem clearly designed to educate the reader--for example, a transgender boy who looks like Britney Spears; an enclave of Radical Faeries who live off the land in rural Tennessee; a devoted gay couple who have been partners for 20 years; and, of course, the usual homophobes. In short, there's plenty of expected stuff. About halfway through the cross-country journey, however, Kyle begins questioning his relationship with bisexual Jason, and the story becomes more involving as characterization finally takes the driver's seat. Flamboyant Nelson remains annoyingly predictable, alas, but the other two boys are sympathetic charmers, and fans of Sanchez's first two Rainbow novels will certainly want to read this one. Michael Cart
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 690L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (April 10, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141691191X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416911913
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #441,835 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm the author of cool, sometimes controversial teen books, including the Rainbow Boys trilogy, The God Box, Getting It, and the Lambda Award-winning middle-grade novel So Hard to Say. My novel, Bait, won the Florida Book Award Gold Medal for YA fiction. My newest novel, Boyfriends with Girlfriends, came out in April 2011. I received my master's degree in guidance and counseling from Old Dominion University and for many years worked as a youth and family counselor. Visit me at www.AlexSanchez.com.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Brandon Meyer on February 15, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Out of three books I love this one the best. The after high school setting was cool for a change and the maturity levels of the characters was better. In this book, Kyle isn't the perfect boy anymore, Jason sees that he can screw up. I like the readers now see some of Kyles flaws and defects, this is one of the best parts of the book. Jason...oh Jason. I enjoyed reading about how Jason questions hes total "gayness" when he sees naked girls and kisses that girl in the club. Thats a big problem many questioning people have and it was nice to see it brought up in a way. Jason and Kyles relationship goes throught its tough times on this trip with is also nice to see becuase not every relationship in the world is perfect. In many ways even though Kyle and Jason fight, their relationship is growing stronger. Then comes Nelson. Nelson, a friend of Kyle and not really Jasons in the other two books. In this book, I like how Nelson and Jason start to connect and Kyle doesnt like that. This is another big problem many teens hae in their relationships, gays and straights. He also wants to find his true love like Kyle found Jason, but he doesnt know if hes ever going to find that til the end of the book in L.A. My all time favorite part of the book is at the end when Kyle knows he want to spend the rest of his life with Jason and that they are going to take it one day at a time, just like the old couple from the diner. I would recommend this book to everyone!!!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Marauder The Slash Nymph on January 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover
To answer that burning, burning question: Nelson's love life becomes more than unrequited crushes and a past one-night stand. Thank God. Now the world can move on!

The best book of the trilogy, for me, is still the first, with its boldness amidst hesitancy and tender emotions, and the worst is the second one, where too many aspects aren't given enough time to develop. Rainbow Road, if not the best of the trilogy, is definitely a worthy conclusion.

I was wondering if Jason's bisexuality was going to be addressed again, or if it was going to be put to the wayside due to his relationship with Kyle; it becomes important, but, luckily, in a way that gives more depth to Jason as a character as opposed to being sensationalized or a factor that makes his relationship with Kyle impossible. Confined quarters and long hours on the road lead Jason and Kyle to see each other's flaws, which is one of the best parts of the book. Jason is no longer the idealized perfect man of Kyle's dreams, but the two come to know each other on a deeper level.

Nelson remains Nelson, though spending so much time with Jason leads to both a friendship between them and the realization from Nelson that he's somewhat attracted to Jason, the latter being one of the funniest and truest parts of the book. In a way, Nelson is probably the character who has grown least in the series, but there's something comforting in knowing that Nelson is always going to be outrageously fabulous (wait till you get to the Britney Spears outfit) while still doing his share of embarrassing things (of the three main characters, only Nelson would manage to drop his cell phone in the toilet).
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Juan Torres on March 17, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I cant wait to read the conclucion of the three part series call rainbow boys-rainbow high and now rainbow road. If this book is anything like the other two then it worth more than 5 stars its worth a million. Alex Sanchez is a Genious in these stories her writes about (love) straight love,gay love ,friend love ,parent love,and acceptance of one self not as a faggot a queer but as a human being. He write about frienships and how to know who and what are friends. he writes about hope-liflove-fear but above all he writes about truth and the ugly world of hatred discrimination and double standers. I not only recommend these books I encourge them.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By StraightGurl on November 9, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Rainbow Road is one hell of a great book. A must read. For anyone who is gay, straight, or in between, this book is for you. This book transcends sexuality. It's about growing up, accepting who you are, and learning that in this life there are no guarantees.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JVS on September 14, 2006
Format: Hardcover
In this third installment of Sanchez's rainbow trilogy, we find Kyle, Jason, and Nelson taking a road trip across the country (from Washington, DC to Los Angeles, CA).

There definitely is something transformative about driving across the country--even more so when you don't do it alone. The excitement, the fear, the being trapped, the feeling infinite...Sanchez did a great job of capturing these emotions. The distinct personalities of Kyle, Jason, and Nelson that Sanchez has developed over the series (Rainbow Boys, Rainbow High, and here in Rainbow Road) gets the chance to unfold even more. We learn more about the characters, we get to watch them grown, and become themselves.

Nelson's utter commitment to being himself shines through.

Kyle's dedication to his friends, and his vulnerability that is matched by his sense of hope are endearing.

And Jason...his perseverance is admirable.

While I worry that the ending is a little too focused on coming out as a panacea, I do like Sanchez's emphasis on the importance of community.
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