Uncle What-is-it is Coming to Visit!
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From the author of Daddy's Roommate (1990), another purposive story concerning misconceptions about homosexuals. Tiffany and Igor don't remember Uncle Brett, who lives far away in Boston; when Mom happily tells them that's he's coming tomorrow, they ask, "'Is he married?'" and Mom gets "sort of a funny look on her face" and allows," 'as a matter of fact, he's gay.' "Then, before she can explain, she's interrupted by a kitchen crisis. Still wondering, the kids encounter some mean-minded teenagers who regale them with tales of obnoxious stereotypes - frilly cross-dressing, black leather and chains - ali flamboyantly depicted in broadly exaggerated cartoon-style illustrations. Mom never does set the children straight before Uncle Brett shows up - a nice, ordinary man who hates brussels sprouts and plays catch better than Dad; he explains that "gay men are just guys who fall in love with each other" and that some "do dress up like women [or] wear black leather. But that's all right, too." There's no subtlety here, and the real characters are as stock as the imaginary ones, but Willhoite limns them with sure, expressive lines; confronting the negative caricatures head-on is courageous and effective. Useful. (Kirkus Reviews)