WWII. 1942. Will's brother is fighting the war in the Pacific, but Will is forced to remain behind. Will takes his brother's place in the academic world of Indiana University, where he meets two students and two soon-to-be-legendary men who will change his life forever.
Will thought he was the only boy attracted to other males, but when he sneaks into Professor Kinsey's marriage course he realizes his mistake. Will meets Ben, who he suspects is not unlike himself. When his suspicions are confirmed, the pair begins an awkward, halting relationship of self-discovery and love. Will is shocked that Negroes attend IU. He's leery and afraid of Adam, but becomes ashamed of his prejudice when he comes face-to-face with the discrimination Adam faces daily.
Together, Will, Adam, and a powerful ally join to subtly and surreptitiously integrate IU. But, just as changes for the better come, Will is faced with prejudice much closer to home, prejudice that can only be banished by tragedy.
A Triumph of Will is a story of friendship, ignorance, fear, and the power of knowledge and love to make the world a better place.
©2014 Mark A. Roeder (P)2016 Mark A. Roeder
A surprising book from my favorite YA author because he goes back in time to 1942. Our boys can't join the army because one is hearing impaired and the other is the last surviving male in his family. It will be over a quarter of a century before the Stonewall riots and far longer until now when gay marriage is legal. Being 'out' in the 1940s could land you in jail or a insane asylum because being homosexual is considered a mental illness.
Who else but Mark Roeder would Prof. Kinsey in a love story between two college students? Our MC starts working for Kinsey doing the research that eventually would lead to the Kinsey Scale and scientific acceptance people aren't strictly gay or straight but have variations in between.
Our MC comes from away on as farm in a tiny town and at Indiana University first meets a negro. He had only known the discrimination and ugly hatred of people of color who he is told are lazy and useless. He discovers in meeting then making a negro friend that all he was told were lies. He sets out to work to remove as many discriminatory practices from the University and the town. Discrimination is so ubiquitous that our MC and his new friend can't even find a place where they can eat together both in town and at Indiana U.
These two subjects, suppression of human rights and the inequality given to gays and blacks, link nicely. Mr. Roeder has given us a thoughtful book that is also very enjoyable to read.
The only negative for this otherwise top notch YA story is that I'm not pleased with the narration.
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