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Am I Blue?: Coming Out from the Silence
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Am I Blue?: Coming Out from the Silence

3.93  ·  Rating Details ·  4,642 Ratings  ·  163 Reviews
Original stories by C. S. Adler, Marion Dane Bauer, Francesca Lia Block, Bruce Coville, Nancy Garden, James Cross Giblin, Ellen Howard, M. E. Kerr, Jonathan London, Lois Lowry, Gregory Maguire, Lesléa Newman, Cristina Salat, William Sleator, Jacqueline Woodson, and Jane Yolen

Each of these stories is original, each is by a noted author for young adults, and each honestly po
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 15th 1995 by HarperTeen (first published 1994)
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Dec 15, 2013 Dusty rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013
This past week, while a lot of people carried on the social media debate about that Duck Dynasty patriarch's newest homophobic remarks, I found myself finishing Am I Blue?: Coming Out from the Silence. Yes, the two events are related.

Printed in the mid-1990s (but unfortunately unknown to me until just recently), the book is a collection of stories for, and about, gay, lesbian, and questioning teenagers. The editor, Marion Dane Bauer, points out in her introduction that "One out of ten teenagers
Jenny (Reading Envy)
This book of short stories has been on the ALA banned and challenged book list since its publication in 1994. Twenty years later, the stories are still relevant, but perhaps not as inclusive or direct as they might be now. I found them quite mild (when considering the challenged status), often focusing on a curious or questioning youth coming into contact with someone who told them that whoever they are is okay, whether that is gay or not. Main message - you are not alone. Why would we ban a boo ...more
Aug 28, 2009 Jill rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: GLBTQ groups/teens
Shelves: young-adult, glbtq
This book probably saved my sanity when, as a teenager, I realized I might be gay*. It has sixteen short stories about different aspects of being gay or knowing gay people - some sad, some happy, some in-between - and being a teenager. In addition to being a good book in itself, it is also a fabulous resource for finding authors who have written other books about gay teenagers, or at least who are sensitive to the issues. The book is also appropriate for adults, although the issues are going to ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This is a solid group of short stories. My favorite story was "Michael's Little Sister" by C.S Adler. I didn't have much of an emotional response to any of the others, but most of the stories were good and I did enjoy them. The only one I actually disliked is "Blood Sister" by Jane Yolen.

I have only a few criticisms. First of all, in the first story ("Am I Blue?" by Bruce Coville) there is an off hand comment by one of the characters that I thought was kind of biphobic. That was mildly irritatin
Jan 17, 2012 Rachel rated it liked it
Shelves: ya, lgbtq, short-stories
Two things bring down my opinion of this collection, one is personal, one is more objective.

The first, through no fault of its own, is my distaste for the short story. It's not that I don't think a good story can be told in 10,000 words or thereabouts, in fact many can, but most of this collection needed more fleshing out to really make any sort of impact on me.

The second, though, is how dated it seems. What was edgy and relevant in 1994 seems rather redundant and blasé in 2012. On the plus side
Apr 28, 2012 Jess rated it liked it
it was a great read that is really inspirational to LGBTQ teens.
i almost complained to my school library for having this a senior fiction just because it had gay themes then i read "three mondays in july" and some of the others and kinda figured Senior Fiction might be a bit more apropriate.

it was an excelent read though and i would recomend it to everyone simply because it is educational for Gays as well as straight people.
Avery Winston
Oct 30, 2010 Avery Winston rated it it was amazing
"Am I Blue?" is a book filled with different stories about LGBT and what they go through because they're LGBT. The book starts of with a story of a young teen who is confused about this sexuality and is being bullied because he is suspected of being gay. He is visited by his fairy godfather who is there to grant him three wishes, so the teen wishes for a "gaydar". He wishes for this so he can see which people actually are gay and not. His "gaydar" turns people shades of blue to show how attracte ...more
reading this for the second time. i got it from the public library when i was in high school. i thought the stories were about depression. instead it became the first piece(s) of gltbq teen fiction i ever read. in light of current events in my hometown, i'm amazed our library even owned this book back in 1998 or whatever. i wish i knew who the teen librarian back then was so i could track her down and hug her. (note to self: do this.)

ANYWAY. this is a terrific selection of stories that holds up
A collection of short stories by a variety of different authors), all focusing on teenagers coming to terms with either their own homosexuality or that of a friend or relative. A lot of the stories involve the teenager getting guidance from an older (or more experienced) person who guides them through the experience of coming out. Sometimes this is sweet, like in the story where a girl is counseled by her older sister's gay friend; and sometimes it's hella creepy, like the story involving a teen ...more
Feb 24, 2011 Emily rated it really liked it
This collection of short stories about homosexuality has something for everyone. This is not to say that one person can't enjoy all of it, though. As with most young adult fiction, these stories featured a teen or tween protagonist. But these are not all 'coming out' stories. Some characters are out and comfortable with that, some are struggling with coming out, and some are not even sure that they're going to. The collection, though variations on a theme, are quite diverse. I cannot name any st ...more
Apr 26, 2011 Katja rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-english
I came across this book in library database: I was checking if Gregory Maguire's Wicked was in shelf and in the search I found this book too ('cause Maguire has written one of the stories in the book).

It's a collection of short stories with gay-theme for young adults. They were dealing with both gay teenagers and teenagers with gay parents. I liked most of the stories more or less. Only Jane Yolen's story I half-skipped. My favourite was probably Nancy Garden's "Parents' Night" which was about c
May 18, 2016 Lauren rated it really liked it
Shelves: glbtq
This novel is written for the mature audience. I would introduce this to students in their teen years, once they understand more about the GLBTQ community. This is a great novel because it has short stories within it that address homosexuality. Some of the stories are written by teens who have "come out" or falling in love with those of them same sex as them. Other stories are written by friends and family who have someone in their lives that depicts themselves as GLBT or Q. This novel was well ...more
Jun 07, 2008 AE rated it it was amazing
I picked this up a couple of months ago. I haven't read it in over a decade. I didn't expect the stories to illicit any emotional response from me. But I was wrong. They are still so moving, so true and so diverse. My favorite is still the title story "Am I blue?".
Sep 25, 2007 Kristen rated it it was amazing
Shelves: youngadult
Finally made my way through and read some of the stories in the book by my favorite YA authors. It's a book that contains 16 separate stories dealing with coming out of the closet. Some of the stories were really sweet and some even made me cry.
Oct 12, 2007 Shannon marked it as to-read
Shelves: ya-books, queer
I'm re-reading this.
A heart-warming collection of very well-selected and well-written stories about growing up gay or lesbian or with gay or lesbian friends or parents.

The story is kicked off to a great start with Bruce Coville's amusing story 'Am I Blue?' that challenges the idea of homosexuality/heterosexuality as an exclusive binary.

ME Kerr - We might as well all be strangers - I really liked this story about a Jewish girl whose family are not very happy about her revelation and warn her not to tell her grandmot
Cacy Thomas
Dec 18, 2013 Cacy Thomas rated it it was amazing
I was first attracted to, “Am I Blue? Coming Out from the Silence,” when I was looking through my 9th grade English teacher’s bookshelf. I saw the title and thought, “That’s different,” and picked it up. Well I was right, it is different, but it’s a beautiful kind of different! “Am I Blue?” is written by various authors as it is a collection of stories. Each one has a common theme: adolescence and sexuality. I was expecting serious stories of tormenting teens because of their life choices and th ...more
Mar 09, 2012 Jolanda rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kyle Moore
Jan 25, 2014 Kyle Moore rated it really liked it
Having wanted to read so badly (as I hadn't in weeks), I found this in my school library, and thought, "well, why not." It is an LGBT anthology, and I am bisexual, so it might be something that I enjoy.

And I certainly enjoyed it.

For one, I loved how realistic of it all. I could relate to all the characters, and especially the one from "Three Mondays in July". I could relate because in a similar fashion, I had learned that I was into my own gender, and I could relate to how he was scared to tell
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Me for

Written over ten years ago, AM I BLUE? is still as important today as it was then. A short-story collection dealing with GLBT (gay/lesbian/ bisexual/transgender) issues by some of 1995's top authors, this book is a true gem for teens searching for their identity--or just looking for a good read. With stories ranging from contemporary paranormal, to ones set in the 1950's, to one based during the Vietnam War, and even one in another world of Amazon warriors, the
May 31, 2012 Ari rated it liked it
Shelves: owned-books

It is hard to read a queer lit book that was written in the early 90s. Put differently: I was born in '92 and my views/opinions/understandings of what it is to be queer have changed dramatically in the course of 20 years. So a book that is as old as I am will, naturally, feel a little dated. It was hard to read in that respect, but the existence of such a book in the 90s makes up for it. It takes astounding courage - just as much courage as Ellen coming out on her show. Even if the auth
Oct 16, 2014 Rll52014_mollyharris rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbt
Am I Blue? is a collection of 16 short stories for young adults by a collection of authors. The theme of this collection is "Coming Out from the Silence", each story is by a noted author for young adults. Some write from personal experience and some from extensive research, but all authors approach the topic with the respect and authenticity it deserves.

I really enjoyed this book and I thought Bauer's decision to publish a collection of short stories rather than an in-depth novel was a wise one,
Have I mentioned before that I love my employer library? High School library, in Regional/Rural Australia, with a fabulous collection of YA queerlit. Including this collection.

I don't think I outright disliked a single story. In the end my favourites were probably Gregory Maguire's "The Honorary Shepherds" (because it dealt with queerness and faith, as well as religious art and had a Quirky Narrator); Lois Lowry's "Holding", because of its difference; CS Adler's "Michael's Little Sister", for be
Apr 28, 2008 Stephy rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Young Adult readers, PFLAG members
This a an excellent (and one of the first) collections of stories about being young and gay or lesbian in America. All the stories were commissioned from a notable Young Adult or children's writer. Every story features at least one character who is gay or lesbian.

For kids in the 90's, coming to understand their sexuality was a lot easier than it had been for me twenty-five or more years earlier. I was impressed by the fact that even straight kids were reading it, and becoming more accepting of
Jean Marie Angelo
Aug 29, 2013 Jean Marie Angelo rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
I loved this. Released in 1994, this was a ground-breaking collection of pro-LGBT stories for young adults. I wish there had been something like this when I was a teen. This was a recommended read from a friend who once shelved books at the library in his small, Louisana town. It was the book that affirmed for him that he wasn't alone. There were others like him and they were surviving and thriving. This has me recall the wonderful quote from Jeanette Winterson, "Every book is a message in a bot ...more
Rick O'Connor
May 16, 2016 Rick O'Connor rated it did not like it
Shelves: diversity
This is a book that is interesting to read, and quite frankly, there is something in here for everyone. It tells the stories of sixteen people and their experiences with being gay. I think the fact that you get so many different perspectives about what life was like as a gay person is what I found interesting. It reminded me of another book I read, about what it was like being bullied, called DEAR BULLY, which I will link here:

I tend to like this compilati
Nov 22, 2014 Lexus rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbt, short-stories
Freshmen student having no one to hang out with at lunch and in turn finds themselves in the library clutching, what my friends at the time considered unorthodox, Am I blue? . It was the very first lgbt book I had ever read so it holds a special place in my heart. I appreciated how the stories came from different angles. Growing up is never easy and discovering your sexual identity isn't any easier and this book put that in perspective. As I was that lonely freshmen girl spending her days hiding ...more
Mar 10, 2013 Jonah rated it it was amazing
Shelves: anthologies, queer
When I was a queer preteen, around 1997-2002, this was the ONLY book I found in my library about being a queer kid that was at a level where I could understand it. For that alone, I would offer my thanks to all of the contributors to this book. I have read and reread the entire book over a dozen times, and certain stories I have read more than a hundred times.
This book was never inspirational to me; it didn't give me role models. I am neither gay nor lesbian, and neither are my parents or frien
Sep 15, 2011 Amanda rated it really liked it
I read this book back in middle school, and it came along at just the right time. As I hit one of the first major periods of time spent questioning my sexual and gender identities, my teacher introduced the class to a couple of LGBTQI anthologies which were available on our classroom shelves for anyone to borrow. Reading the stories contained within was a huge influence on me at the time, and I am shocked that I only just remembered it recently upon reading about the gay YA fiction publication i ...more
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The Backlot Gay B...: Am I Blue? edited by Marion Dane Bauer 1 7 May 23, 2013 07:53AM  
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Marion Dane Bauer is the author of more than eighty books for young people, ranging from novelty and picture books through early readers, both fiction and nonfiction, books on writing, and middle-grade and young-adult novels. She has won numerous awards, including several Minnesota Book Awards, a Jane Addams Peace Association Award for RAIN OF FIRE, an American Library Association Newbery Honor Aw ...more
More about Marion Dane Bauer...

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“Strangers take a long time to become acquainted, particularly when they are from the same family.” 12 likes
“A good friend of mine once said, "I have never met a bigot who was a reader as a child.” 11 likes
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