Losing It. (short stories) Keith Gray, ed.
“It hurt. A lot. There was a lot of blood too.” Of course, Keith Gray is talking about being hurt in soccer practice…
With this quick start, Losing it is about just that. Ten short stories of losing your virginity from some vary famous British authors, including Melvin Burgess, A.S. King, and Patrick Ness. Jase wants to lose his virginity even if he loses the soccer championship as a result; Emma wonders why she did it; Finn’s grandmother gives some great advice; Charlie and Ant are just fooling around until the right girl comes along- aren’t they?
At times, the British slang gets in the way, but more often the stories themselves talk around the sex part of the story that teens might well lose interest. Teens won’t learn anything new here, nor will they gain any new insights, although some stories are quite poignant: The White Towel (Bali Rai,) a story of not-too-distant India, and Finding It (Anne Fine) from the sex ed teacher’s point of view that teens will shrug off.
In reality, there is very little actual feeling here. While some stories actually deal with emotion, (Different for Boys, Patrick Ness and Age of Consent, Jenny Valentine) most are simple stories of wanting sex. The stories are more “feel good, sweet” stories. In only two of the stories the act of losing one’s virginity is observable. In one of those stories, the actual references to sex are black boxed out, creating more in your imagination than there would be if left in the narrative. The reality of being protected during sex is never taken seriously. This would have been a stellar opportunity!
Kissing, gay friends, gltbq, masturbation, Star-Trek sex, violence