Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Abstinence Teacher by Tom Perrotta (St Martin's Griffin 2007)

For as long as he could remember, Tim had been drawn to this feeling of community; it was something he'd sought, at very different points in his life, from both punk rock and the Grateful Dead, and in each case, for a little while, he'd found what he was looking for. But it hadn't lasted, and in any case, the communities in which he claimed membership were disappointingly narrow and homogenous compared to this one. The punks and the Deadheads were overwhelmingly white, suburban, and young; almost everyone wore similar clothes and hairstyles, and had had more or less the same experience of the world. Not like here, where you saw grandmothers and little kids, people in wheelchairs, whole families, interracial couples, immigrants who barely spoke a word of English, college teachers, twelve steppers, cancer patients who'd lost their hair, lonely people who didn't have a friend in the world until they stepped through the door of the Tabernacle.

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