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The God Box Kindle Edition
|Length: 272 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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|Age Level: 12 - 99|
|Grade Level: 7 - 9|
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"Alex Sanchez evokes the crucifying experience of adolescents wrestling with their sexual identity and their identity as Christians. This book is a gift not just to teenagers, but to those who love and work with them." -- The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop and Primate, the Episcopal Church
About the Author
- File Size : 656 KB
- Print Length : 272 pages
- Publication Date : December 14, 2010
- Language: : English
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Publisher : Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers; Reprint Edition (December 14, 2010)
- ASIN : B004A90A8Y
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #883,112 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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I also can't say enough about how wonderful the love was in the book. Not just romantic love, but friendship love, family love, love of enemies, love of thyself, and-love of God. The dedication said it all: "To those who believe in a loving God and those who struggle to love themselves."
I highlighted the crap out of the Bible verses, where Sanchez explains the context of the verses condemning homosexuality.
Much of what I'm going through was in this book, and I take comfort in the fact that this journey so many of us are on by ourselves can have a happy ending if we just trust in God.
What I love most about this book is that it points out that LGBTQ people don't fit society's mold all of the time. This kid was conservative and religious, and he became so happy when he found who he was with Manuel's help. We don't all pierce things, get rainbow tattoos and talk like girls for fun. We are real people. If society wouldn't make homosexuality such a big deal, everyone would be happy with who they are like Pablo became.
This was a wonderful read. Religious leaders ought to keep this book in their offices to distribute to young people who question their sexuality.
"The God Box" is loaded with challenges- Can you test god? Can you test your faith? Can you test what's in your heart and learn to be honest with yourself- regardless of what others think?
Now, I titled this "coming from an outsider" because I'm just an avid reader. I am not gay, I'm not a teenager, and I'm not a believer in a god of any kind. However, because I love to read, I've read the Bible and I can respect it very much- as well as respect the faiths of those who are able to hold tight to their own personal beliefs. Religion is personal- reading books... not so much.
So, now that you have a bit of a background on me- I hope that it will colour what I have to say next.
WHAT I LOVED:
-Paul and Manuel's characters were VERY well developed. Angie, Pa and Abuelita's were also VERY strong characters. I could picture them in my head, even though I don't think they actually were physically described in much detail in the book.
-The journey that Paul was taken on through Manuel. The inner turmoil that Paul was going through while deciding if he wanted to take action or not
-The dialogue with Paul and his Abuelita. I think she is my favorite character.
-The descriptions and the arguments during Bible study classes. Fair to see BOTH sides of the story- and to keep true to each of the characters' opinions (didn't waver)
-The discussions between Manuel and Paul about if it was sinful to be gay and Christian. I love religious debates and love hearing BOTH sides and many different viewpoints.
-The ending. Very good. Brought a tear to my eye!
WHAT I COULDN'T GET OVER:
-The story jumped RIGHT in. Page one, there was already the inner turmoil. I think it would have been better if we got to know Paul and Angie at least a little bit before he started to "change". This book was about learning to accept- but it seemed like we "met" Paul when he was already learning to accept. Maybe a little more background would have been helpful?
-The instant reaction to Manuel. Is it really like that? I know that when I see someone for the first time, no matter how handsome or energetic he is, I don't necessarily feel a "pull" toward him immediately. My mind doesn't instantly go to what it would feel like to touch his skin.
-The reactions from the anti-gay guys. (turned out in the end, there was a sob story there too- I hated learning that part) It was just so dramatic. Maybe it's because it was such a small town? I know many gay guys and girls in my area and nothing like that EVER happened. Not since, like, the 80s.
Even though it is technically a teen book, "The God Box" can be enjoyed by any age group and any sexuality. It's about attraction and acceptance. About romance and honesty. About faith and truth. Even if you're not religious, like me, it is still interesting to read what people choose to hold so dear to their hearts. It is intense to see inside their minds and try to understand and to feel what they do.
I think everyone can relate to this story- regardless of your own life choices.
Top reviews from other countries
I am some way past my teens, however, and I bought it mainly to see how Sanchez would deal with the Church's traditional condemnation of homosexuality. He succeeds in this by pointing out that sexual orientation is innate rather than acquired or chosen, and by indicating the weakness of the popular biblical arguments. He shoots down Leviticus with ease, and points out that the Genesis 19 story about Sodom was only one attempt to account for the city's destruction; that the Sodomites' main sin was their refusal to accept God's messengers. He might have dealt more effectively with Paul's attack by pointing out that the great man was outraged more by the abuse of power in high places, by promiscuity and genereral excess, than by love between members of the same sex.
This is a book to buy, re-read and reflect upon.
On a personal note, it took me many many years to come to terms with who I am. Save yourself the heartaches I endured. Bypass all the doubt I encountered along the way. Catholics do guilt in a big way! Read it.