after reading Blue Boy by Rakesh Satyal

I laughed. I was moved. This novel is one I will remember for a long time. Kiran Sharma, a young Indian American boy, is different from most other boys in his Cincinnati suburb. He takes ballet, he likes to draw, play with dolls, and experiment with his mother’s makeup — surreptitiously, of course. At some point, he starts to realize what the word ‘gay’ really means, in all its sexual fervor.

Kiran is funny and wise and very perceptive of the world around him. A lot of his childhood reflection is about his parents. An only child, he must learn to carefully balance between the rational math mind of his father and the warm but worried shopaholic and kitchen heart of his mother. The author does an excellent job of getting us into the mind of this 12 year old Indian boy.

I won’t spoil the story for you — and I do encourage reading it — but Kiran becomes enamored of Krishna, the Hindu God who is a butter loving, flute playing warrior and lover. Kiran’s difference becomes linked with the blue uniqueness of the beloved deity. His act at the elementary school’s talent show brings his fantasy to a crescendo.

If you love sensitive children, Indian culture, or just a warm, wise, and witty read, Blue Boy is for you.

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