When Love Comes to Town by Tom Lennon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
With a new introduction by James Klise
First US Edition!
Meet Neil Byrne - try-scorer on the rugby field, prizewinning student, one of the in-crowd at the disco, regular guy, gay. Presenting one face to the world and burying his true feelings in fantasy, Neil manages to keep his secret. But when fantasy isn't enough and he becomes caught up in the bizarre subculture of Dublin's gay nightlife, the pretense must end. It is the time for truth. The consequences are both hilarious and painful. Told with honesty, humour and originality, When Love Comes to Town brings a new type of hero to modern Irish fiction.
When Love Comes To Town by Tom Lennon is a story is set in Ireland in the early 90s. As it is described by the author, it is a coming out story of the main character, Neil Byrne.
Neil is popular, well liked, yet stuck as he is and yet all the time, deep down, he is sure that he is gay. We have to remember that the times of which this book was written were different, and not as accepting. Not that it is that much different these days. Everyone then would say that they are fine with people who are gay, just as long as they stay away from you. So the world at large was pretty much closeted bigots.
I cried, but that's because I'm overly sensitive to the plight of the LGBT community, knowing that the community have some of my own family and friends involved.
When I first looked into the blurb, I thought that this was usually not the type of book that I would read, because, like my movies, I tend to go for faster paced and action filled story lines, with great character and plot development thrown in. At first glance, this was looked like an autobiography and I usually do not touch those.
Reading on, I began to empathize with what the main character had to deal with, and what most gay people have to face when it has to deal with their decision to come out. I do not want to be in that position where the decision of whether it is worth losing friends and family or just lie about your life and yourself to make others around you happy. This must be the toughest decision to make and, for me, once they take that giant leap, they are all the better and stronger as individuals. When Love Comes To Town involves a great account of Neil's's inner turmoil, and probably in the year that this is based, what I would have thought, is that Neil is brave/courageous indeed.
I would hate to be in such a situation and faced with this decision... man it can't be easy for them. It is easy for us to read about them, but to be them, I'll be in way over my head.
When Love Comes To Town is a good book to read and will give the readers an understanding of their troubles, thoughts and decisions they might face in coming out and I highly recommend it.
Review based on ARC sent by Netgalley.
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