Heathens by Jonah Bergan

A young man survives and fights in a dark vision of America torn apart by fear and hatred.

Self-named ‘Holden Caulfield’ is a gay teenager with a minor telekinetic ability. He relates the events he’s witnessed as his world fell apart, his attempts to fight back and his struggle to understand it all.

The writing is good and well-edited, though won’t be to everyone’s taste. It’s written in first person with a good deal of ranting asides about the awfulness of it all. I guess it’s emulating the style of Catcher in the Rye (which I haven’t read, so I might be wrong). I do know it’s rather annoying to read, but the story was engaging enough for me to put up with it.

A number of things are never explained. It isn’t obvious whether it’s only gay people, for some reason, who have ‘talents’, or whether the violence against gay people originally had something to do with them having ‘talents’, or not. Either way, the fight apparently becomes everyone vs everyone and American society breaks down. This story, though, focusses on the gay-people-with-powers fighting back against the more numerous religious-nut-normals.

Overall, a good interesting read. Formatting could be better: lines are double-spaced, which I dislike. Expect violence, gay romance, some sexual references.

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