Monday, October 11, 2010

Book Review & Giveaway: David Inside Out

I was contacted a few months ago to see if I would be intersted in reviewing a book, David Inside Out (HERE) by Lee Bantle. On my list of goals for 2010 was to read 2-3 books by December 31st. I had read Run Like a Mother (HERE) earlier this year, but still hadn't read a novel.

I was told that David ran on his high school track team and used running as a way to escape the drama that goes with high school, his confusion as he "comes out of the closet", and just escapes life in general. I thought wow, as a working mother of two, I do the exact same thing. David and I have different frustrations. But, when people ask me how I took up running and why I enjoy it so much, I say that it is the only thing I use to escape and be by myself and my thoughts.

I am a very sloooow reader. I haven't read a novel since high school ... seriously. That's why I placed this on my goal list for the year. The difficult time was finding time ... quiet time ... to actually sit down and read this book. It turned out to be a beautiful weekend and the kids played outside for 7-8 hours every day. I sat in my lawn chair and turned the pages of this book while they ran around me. It was a very easy read (even for me) and even with all of the interuptions I had throughout the weekend, I was able to finish it by Sunday evening. The hard cover book was 184 pages. I felt a great sense of success when I finished it!

I felt for David who was like most teenagers. Confused and wanted to fit in. He even tried to convince himself that he was something else, by dating his best friend (a girl). Only to prove to himself, and her, who he really was. His running let him get away, alone with his thoughts. Perhaps sometimes he was trying to run away from his problems, too. As a mother of two, I could not relate to David's personal frustrations, but I could relate to the problems facing one growing up in a small midwestern town. Kids can be so judgemental and cruel. I noticed David maturing throughout the book, through his experiences. He grew. He became more brave, confident and selfish. By the end, he knew who he was ... and who he wasn't.

About David Inside Out:

David Dahlgren finds solace running with his high school track team; he's a fast runner and enjoys the sport. But practices become a source of tension when David develops a crush on one of his teammates-Sean. Scared to admit his feelings, David does everything to suppress them: he dates a girl, keeps his distance from his best friend who has become openly gay, and snaps a rubber band on his wrist every time he has "inappropriate" urges. Before long, Sean expresses the thoughts David has been trying to hide, and everything changes for the better. Or so it seems. In this thoughtful yet searing coming-of-age novel, Lee Bantle offers a raw, honest, and incredibly compelling account of a teenager who learns to accept himself for who he is.

About the Author, Lee Bantle:

I live in Park Slope, Brooklyn in a sunny apartment where I do my writing. I set David Inside Out in Minneapolis, Minnesota where I grew up and went to college. In addition to being a writer, I am a lawyer who represents employees in race, gender, disability and sexual orientation discrimination lawsuits. My law firm, Bantle & Levy LLP, is located in Greenwich Village. I got my B.A. degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota and my law degree from New York University. David Inside Out is based in part on my experiences growing up gay in Minnesota before the age of Gay/Straight Alliances, television shows like Will & Grace, and books like the one I have written. My goal in writing this book was to capture the evolving dynamics in play today while giving voice to the complicated feelings that still accompany coming to terms with one's sexual identity. I wrote the book for gay teens who are struggling with their sexual identity, but also for the girls who may date and fall in love with these guys. I also hoped to tell a good coming of age story that would appeal to everyone, no matter what their sexual orientation. I did lots of research for David Inside Out in addition to drawing on personal experience. Among other things, I read a book of teen essays called One Teenager in Ten, attended a meeting of the Gay/Straight Alliance at Westport High School in Connecticut, and interviewed many gay and lesbian people, both adults and teenagers. In the book One Teenager in Ten, one of the boys wrote about how he read men's magazines (Road and Track, Hunter's World) to try to make himself straight. I thought this was both funny and poignant and used the idea for my main character. This is an example of dramatic irony - the reader knows that the plan is not going to work, but David does not know that. My prior middle grade novel, Diving for the Moon, was about a 12-year-old hemophiliac boy who become HIV-positive.

You can learn more about Lee Bantle, David Inside Out, and his other titles on Lee's website (HERE).

You can purchase David Inside Out on Amazon (HERE).

Or, you can win a hard cover copy here .....


One lucky winner will win a
hard cover copy of
David Inside Out
by Lee Bantle


1 – Become a follower of my blog or already are?! LEAVE ME A COMMENT

2 – Follow Running Diva Mom on Facebook HERE. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

3 – Visit the author's website HERE and tell me something you learned about him or one of his books.

4 – Become a fan of author, Lee Bantle on Facebook HERE. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

5 – Post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook or Twitter account. LEAVE ME A COMMENT FOR EACH.

Enter now though Sunday, October 17th.
Winner will be announced on Monday.

[If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) ]


  1. I'm a blog follower, and I'd love to win this book. I have a friend who's on our college cross country team who's gay, and I'd probably pass it on to him after reading it.

    Amy Lauren

  2. I'm a follower. An I LOVE to read. In 2009, my goal was to read 50 books in the year. I finished the 50th book on New Year's Eve, but I made it!!

  3. I'm your fan on Facebook

  4. I used to read a lot. Motherhood has definitely put a damper on my free time. I'm a blog follower!

  5. I'm also a follower on facebook.