Shaun David Hutchinson has been hammering out one brilliant book after another, and Brave Face is his most honest and courageous one yet This profound memoir is a triumph a full throated howl to the moon to remind us why we choose to survive and thrive Brendan Kiely, New York Times bestselling author of TraditionShaun David Hutchinson has long been one of our brightest lights and best storytellers In Brave Face, he shares all the sh t he had to survive to get there and how we can too Brutal and essential Sam J Miller, award winning author of The Art of StarvingAs much a book about coming out as it is a book about simply coming tobe, Brave Faceis the bravest memoir Ive read in yearsIlluminating, brutally honest, poignant,and sometimes laugh out loud funny,this isnt a book just for queer kids, its a book for any teen or adult who feels left out, rejected, confused, and scared about their place in the world Kathleen Glasgow, New York Times bestselling author of Girl in PiecesFearless and resonant, Hutchinsons memoir explores personal darkness with profound candor and earned wisdom Courageous, devastating, and beautiful Caleb Roehrig, author of Death Prefers BlondesIt takes talent to render personal truth with clear eyed honesty, and deep empathy for the wounded, bewildered selves weve been It takes greater bravery to share that truth Hutchinson has talent and bravery in droves and BRAVE FACE is a triumph This book is a balm and Im grateful it exists Alex London, bestselling author of Proxyand Black Wings BeatingYA author Hutchinson The Past and Other Things That Should Stay Buried explores the travails of coming into his sexuality in the early s, when homophobia was deeply rampant in the US the AIDS crisis was in devastating full force, and equal rights for anyone on the LGBTQ spectrum were still a distant dream With the lack of positive representation of queerness, Hutchinsons views of gay people were so negative that it took him years to recognize his own sexuality In the meantime, trying to live an inauthentic life left him angry and depressed for reasons he couldnt grasp The author explores his teenage years with raw honesty, presenting the truth as he saw it and sharing passages from his diaries to illustrate the turmoil he experiencedwhich many queer teens will continue to empathize with Though he describes himself at times in deep depression and engaging in self harm, the memoir ends on a positive note, sharing the ways in which he finds acceptance both within himself and within the queer community, and sending an important message to other queer teens your life is a gift, and support is out there Publishers Weekly STARRED REVIEW, March , Hutchinson The Past and Other Things That Should Stay Buried,lays bare his high school and early college yearshis coming out, the resulting family tension, friendship difficulties, depression, selfharm, failed relationships, a suicide attemptin this razor sharp, deeply revealing, and brutally honest exploration of growing up gay in the South amid an intolerant sociopolitical backdrop that seems hell bent on denying him a future Emotionally raw and deeply insightful, Hutchinsons reminiscence of his earlier years is not tainted by the rose colored glasses of nostalgia, nor is his story so macabre as to avoid heartwarming moments and frequent instances of humor to break up the tension I was right Kissing really was like an H P Lovecraft story, but with less xenophobia and racism Although this is a straightforward coming out narrative in some ways, the depth and complexity of each recounted moment serve to illustrate to readers the myriad ways in which society creates paradoxical and near impossible expectations for queer young people to adhere to on a daily basis Brave Face serves not just as a personal story but as a guide to help queer and questioning readers survivebetter yet, to thriveagainst all odds, in defiance of a world that so often appears to want them to fade away Rob Bittner Booklist STARRED REVIEW , April , Coming of age in the s, Shaun David Hutchinson At the Edge of the Universe knew certain things about being gay from the messages society sent Gay people, especially gay men, were so often portrayed as promiscuous sexual deviants and drug abusers that, even in spite of my own limited personal experience, its how I saw them too Through pop culture, politics and news headlines, Shaun learned there was no future to being gay, which presented a tremendous problem for the teen when he finally came to terms with the fact that he is gay In his powerful memoir, Brave Face, the young adult author bares his soul to the world about realizing his sexual orientation and suffering from a depression so profound he attempted suicide Hutchinsons raw honesty pierces readers as he describes his fight to find an identity in a world that viewed homosexuals as so worthless that they didnt even deserve to live His fear and pain radiate off the pages, demanding others experience a small part of it, too Audiences will be hard pressed not to feel the emotional weight Hutchinson carries It was like every person I came into contact with was plugging themselves into me, and occasionally Id overload and short His journey to acceptance is one marred with struggle and loss, but also imbued with hope Hutchinsons gift for language makes this uncomfortable story beautiful and forceful Courageous and commanding, Brave Face is a bold, banner announcement that there is a future for everyone Jen Forbus, freelancer Discover A young adult writer tells his personal story of coming to terms with his sexual orientation and his battle with life threatening depression Shelf Awareness, June , Critically acclaimed author of We Are the Antsdescribed as having hints of Vonneguts Slaughterhouse FiveSchool Library Journal opens up about what led to an attempted suicide in his teens, and his path back from the experienceI wasnt depressed because I was gay I was depressed and gay Shaun David Hutchinson was nineteen Confused Struggling to find the vocabulary to understand and accept who he was and how he fit into a community in which he couldnt see himself The voice of depression told him that he would never be loved or wanted, while powerful and hurtful messages from society told him that being gay meant love and happiness werent for him A million moments large and small over the years all came together to convince Shaun that he couldnt keep going, that he had no future And so he followed through on trying to make that a reality Thankfully Shaun survived, and over time, came to embrace how grateful he is and how to find self acceptance In this courageous and deeply honest memoir, Shaun takes readers through the journey of what brought him to the edge, and what has helped him truly believe that it does get better