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  • Out of the Shadows

  • Reimagining Gay Men’s Lives
  • By: Walt Odets
  • Narrated by: Will Damron
  • Length: 12 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: LGBTQ+, LGBTQ+ Studies
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (28 ratings)

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Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of Out of the Shadows: Reimagining Gay Men's Lives, by Walt Odets, read by Will Damron. 

Even in our modern progressive world, it's not easy to be a gay man. While young men often come out more readily, even those from the most liberal of backgrounds still struggle to accept themselves and experience stigma, shame and difficulties with intimate relationships. They also suffer from ongoing trauma wrought by the AIDS epidemic, something that is all too often relegated to history.  

Drawing on a lifetime's work as a clinical psychologist, Walt Odets uses the stories of his patients as well as those of his own deep relationships with other gay men to illuminate how these difficulties may be overcome. From a 74-year-old who felt able to come out only after his wife had died, to the boy raised in a strict religious family who worked his way to San Francisco, to the middle-aged defence lawyer who left everything behind to embrace a new life, the experiences here explore everything from grief to survival, childhood pain to the definition of gay itself. 

Out of the Shadows shows us how a new way forward is possible through learning to accept ourselves and others as they are, and independently inventing our own lives.

©2019 Walt Odets (P)2019 Penguin Books Ltd

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    4 out of 5 stars

Thought provoking but not without it biases

All in all I really love the book and the main message of it. One of its main topics is authenticity and a diversity of life styles gay man should have right to lead without being apologetic about it and that sounds very true to me, but besides a long, beautifully crafted movie like story of author's life experiences there is no diversity of other people stories at all. All you actually hear is gay man who want but can't have a relationship or the ones who do but which doesn't work. Although it is mostly sex positive and that is very refreshing, you don't actually meet single people happy with their lives here, you don't meet people who are happy with their diverse and active sexual experiences. Most of stories sounded to me a little too crafted and one sided, presenting just one side of the gay community. And there is lots of focus on AIDS, which is a big part of gay story, but not all of it. More when half of the book actually is devoted to this topic or seems to come back to it at some point. After all it has things to offer and it makes you think, I just would suggest not to listen to it with your brain switch off...

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A unique thought-provoking book

This book takes a different view on what it is to be a gay man(it is focused on gay men) both individually and as a group. This is still an important question, about which there needs to be more discussion, I highly recommend this book to anyone who looks around the gay "scene" and wonders if this is the best we can do?

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Spectacularly moving

An incredible exploration of intergenerational trauma told through captivating case studies of tragic, uplifting and inspiring lives.

A transformational work, beautifully written by a psychologist who is clearly dedicated to reimagining gay men’s lives.

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A great insightfull book. A must read.

This insight of the book is fundamental to any young gay men. To better understand him self and the world he lives in.