i have very mixed feelings about this book.1. the point of this book is a good one. i believe that she is trying to make us realize how important it is to be yourself and not to live for other people and their impressions of you. she tries to make the reader think about oppression (specifically racism, homophobia, heterosexism, and here and there sexism). also about religion and its use and value, what it's meant to be. and the idea of the story for this book is a good one, too.2. she's coming from the right place, but her discussion of all of this stuff (except for maybe the 'be true to yourself' one) is really sub-par. and for whatever reason, it bothered me that throughout the book she called herself gay and lesbian, but also kept talking about how she still liked men also (there's even a sex scene with her and an overuse of the word cock). i am always saying, though, that everyone gets to label themselves, so this is hypocritical and petty of me.3. maybe all of the discussion around the main points is so unsatisfying is because she is a pretty bad writer. she writes like an adolescent who is a good writer would write. it's all forced and just really badly written. i'm not saying that she never writes well - this is only the second book of hers that i've read (rubyfruit jungle is the other) so i'm not prepared to say that, but i have not seen evidence to the contrary so far.4. i was annoyed by pretty much every single character in this book, but i think that's because of the bad writing.5. i feel kind of like i do when watching "the l word," which is to say, well, this pretty much sucks but since there aren't many options out there for watching a tv show about queer folks, i guess i'll keep watching. but i'm starting to think that there's more out there for reading about queer folks, and maybe i need to be more discriminatory. (i'm talking to you, too, sarah waters.)that said, here's something to take from it (amid the not great writing and a disagreeable statement):"'No one is exempt from trying to civilize humanity and replacing the love of power with the power of love. You have a duty to act and no right to expect approval. Anyone can find an excuse to keep from working for a better world. Being gay is a pretty good one, but you know, my little sex bomb, it won't work. Love is calling. Life is calling.'"