Friday, December 31, 2010

Ring in the New Year with Neil Patrick Harris and Family...(Discuss)

The above photo is from People magazine, but I "took it" if you will from After Elton. If you don't know, you have Neil Patrick Harris and his partner, David Burtka. They had twins a couple months ago, a boy and a girl named Gideon and Harper. Aren't they just an adorable family? I think it's wonderful that LGBT couples are able to have children of their own (they used a surrogate) but I know that there is still a lot of debate and angst involved with this as well...whether it's adoption or surrogacy. That part is horrible, because everyone should have a right to a family...and in the case of adoption, so many children need a home. Why should they be denied that because of someone's sexuality?

I suppose I could go on and on about my feelings...but for now, I'll just bask in all the happy news in these type of cases. Feel free to share your thoughts though. You don't have to agree with me, of course, but be respectful or we can delete your comment.

Happy New Year everyone! Let's make 2011 the year that really pushes Let's Get Beyond Tolerance.



Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Betcha Haven't Heard of This Book...

Hidden by Tomas Mournian

Post by: Lauren

Amazon Associate: Buy the book from this link and we get a small percentage

Out: January 25, 2011 (according to Amazon)

Summary: When Ahmed's parents send him to a residential treatment center known as Serenity Ridge, it's with one goal: to "fix" their son, at any cost. But eleven months of abuse and overmedication leave him desperate to escape. And when the opportunity comes, Ahmed runs away to San Francisco.

There, he moves into a secret safe house shared by a group of teens. Until they become independent at eighteen, the housemates hide away from authorities, bound by rules that both protect and frustrate. Ahmed, now known as Ben, tries to adjust to a life lived in impossibly close quarters with people he barely knows, all of whom guard secrets of their own. But even if they succeed in keeping the world at bay, there's no hiding from each other or from themselves. And there's no avoiding the conflicts, crushes, loneliness, and desire that could shatter their fragile, complicated sanctuary at any moment. . .

What I Think: I first heard of this book in Romantic Times magazine. As a warning, I should tell you that it was reviewed in the Mainstream Fiction section and not the Young Adult section. I tell you this only as fair warning about the content inside...this book could very well be about young adults, but written for a more adult audience in mind.

However, I think it sounds like a really unique premise and I'd definitely be interested in trying it out. It's crazy to think that these type of places would ever exist...

What are your thoughts and what are you Waiting On this week?

Be sure to leave your thoughts on Don't Ask, Don't Tell!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Thoughts on...Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Do Not Own

Don't Ask, Don't Tell has finally been repealed. Its been a long time coming, and this will change the lives of many men and women. This doesn't mean things will be altogether better and there is still a long way to go...but it's a step. A small step, but a step, and that's the main thing. You can read this AOL article if you wish to know more about the details.  The following guest posts on the topic of this repeal have been written by our author co-founders, Catherine Ryan Hyde and Lee Bantle.


Do Not Own

Well, I think I'll be echoing the sentiments of a lot of people with what I have to say.

I think this is great, momentous, and deserves celebration. So long as we don't forget that we still haven't repealed the Defense of Marriage Act, or passed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. And that by ending the ridiculous and discriminatory DADT, we have won a victory for the LGB community, but not for our T friends. Then again, we have to start somewhere. When the military doesn't fall apart, maybe people will calm down a little, or at least run short of excuses to discriminate. And maybe it will create a domino effect. I hope so.

I think it is lost on the conservative and homophobic realms of the straight community how much harm is caused by institutionalized prejudice. It's one thing if the bully down the block thinks it's wrong to be gay, but when it's your government, it's really daunting. Especially to young people, who are just discovering and (hopefully) accepting themselves, and who I would really like to see not killing themselves anymore.

So, one way or another, it's a good day for equality. It's just not the last of the good days we need to work for, win and celebrate.

-Catherine Ryan Hyde, author of Jumpstart the World
The repeal of don’t ask – don’t tell is a landmark shift. If you can be gay in the military, then you can be gay anywhere. No employer can justify discrimination based on sexual orientation if discrimination in the military is unlawful. We should soon see passage of a federal law barring discrimination based on sexual orientation. Let’s whoop and cheer and sing. We are truly going to ring in a new year!!!

-Lee Bantle, author of David Inside Out

Sunday, December 19, 2010

2011 Book Challenge: Catherine Ryan Hyde

One of the co-founders of this blog is author Catherine Ryan Hyde. In honor of her books, I decided to START my very first challenge for the new year. All you have to do to sign up is agree to read ONE book by Catherine (YA or Adult) sometime in 2011. That's it! It's super easy.

We obviously hope if you read more than one, that you will buy at least one of her books that you read. She's one author that has been around for awhile and deserves to have the success these newer authors have. So help her have some great sales in 2011 and buy a book.

More than anything, sign up! You never know what books you'll start to love or if Catherine will become a favorite author. Take a chance.

You can sign up on my main blog.  There is no official giveaway for this challenge...but we WILL be having some fun giveaways throughout so you don't want to miss those! Spread the word, post the button.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Movie Review-Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Movie Review

By: Lauren

Amazon Associate:  Buy the movie from this link and we get a small percentage!

I decided to review this movie for the site because of the LGBT elements only. Yes, I loved this film and I think it's a lot of fun, and yes, I do think you should give it a shot if you didn't when it was in theaters. For the review though, I really just wanted to say how I loved Kieran Culkin as Wallace Wells. He's Scott Pilgrim's roommate, who happens to be gay.

You hear about it and can see it throughout the film...but it's not a big deal, and I loved that. Wallace doesn't care that he's gay, nobody else hassles him for it, he's not dealing with coming out or trying to please other's just Wallace. And he happened to be a really hilarious, wonderful character in the film. I don't think I would have enjoyed it as much if it wasn't for him. He even gave me one of my new favorite movies quotes: "I want to have his adopted babies!"

Plus, I think Kieran is a really good actor and I'm excited to finally see him in more roles...and in bigger things too, I hope. One thing I really enjoyed was hearing Kieran talk about his character and how he didn't want to make Wallace's being gay an issue either. I found an interview from moviefone that talks about that a bit. I'll post the one question below...if you want to read more on the topic, as well as see the full interview, then click 'moviefone' above and it'll bring you to the interview.

Cinematical: One of the key reasons that Wallace is such an interesting and effective character is because his sexuality is open but the movie doesn't feel a need to "deal with" him being gay. How did you make sure that part of his personality was presented in a way that showed that it was just one part of who he is?

Kieran Culkin: I think that was easy. When I read it, that was how I saw it; I read it in the script and the comics and was like, okay, that's Wallace. To me, and while I'm talking about it now I'm not trying to be p.c. or anything like that, but when I played him that has nothing to do with who he is. That's just his sexual preference – that's just his sexuality. And after that, people have said, why do you think or what was the point of his being gay, and the only thing I can think of having read the comics and a little bit in this movie, is to show how immature Scott is – just by saying, "hey, this is my gay roommate Wallace Wells." It was important to me because I think it was the way it always was; if that's the way it was in the comics, I feel like that was probably important to Bryan Lee O'Malley, and it had some appeal to me too. At last a character that doesn't have to be "the gay character."

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday: Gemini Bites

Gemini Bites by Patrick Ryan

Out: March 1, 2011


One of the strangest (and funniest) love triangles ever to hit YA fiction, when a pair of twins (one boy, one girl) both fall for the boy who moves in with them…who may or may not be a vampire.

Judy and Kyle Renneker are sixteen-year-old fraternal twins in a rambling family of nine. They have a prickly history with each other and are, at least from Judy's perspective, constantly in fierce competition. Kyle has recently come out of the closet to his family and feels he might never know what it's like to date a guy. Judy, who has a history of pretending to be something she isn't in order to get what she wants, is pretending to be born-again in order to land a boyfriend who heads his own bible study.

When their parents announce that the family is going to be taking in a fellow student for a month so that he can finish the school year before moving away, both Kyle and Judy can't help but sit up and take notice. Garret Johnson, who is taking temporary residence in the newly finished attic, is a young man who moved into town less than a year ago and who is a mysterious, goth loner . . . and claims to be a vampire. He's not an easy person to get to know by any means, but the twins find him (to varying degrees) both strange and alluring.

GEMINI BITES explores what it means to pretend to be something you aren't, what happens when that backfires, and how in-your-face honesty is almost always the best course of action.

Why I Want It: Personally, I still like vampire novels...though if this is truly a vampire novel or just a guy claiming to be one, I'm not sure. Either way, it sounds interesting. And I love that there is a YA vampire novel coming out where one of the main characters are gay. It's different and very exciting, especially in regards to this sites' whole message: Let's Get Beyond Tolerance. Maybe a book like this will help with that.

I'm also a freelance publicist and this book is something that I would love to help promote. So hey, if the author reads this and you're interested...get in touch. Here's my site.

What are your thoughts? PLUS, what other 2011 books feature LGBT characters? I can't really find any beyond Gemini Bites!