2.14.2008

Book Review: The Abstinence Teacher



The Abstinence Teacher by Tom Perrotta

This is the fantastic new novel from Perrotta, who wrote the equally fantastic Little Children. This time, Perrotta tackles religion, education and the 'burbs with wit, heart and eminent readability.

Tom is a born again Christian and coach of a girl's soccer team, Ruth is the atheistic sex education teacher, and this novel chronicles their orbits around each other, their families, and their God before, during and after Tom institutes a spur-of-the-moment prayer of Ruth's daughter's soccer team. Filled with great secondary characters and switching points of view, this novel never seems to lose focus on Tom and Ruth and their individual journeys around each other.

I devoured this book - Perrotta's so easy to read, and the characters were immediately engaging and interesting, and I love the play between ultra-religious Tom and his church and Ruth's disinterest in all things religious. The ending is left ambiguous enough to allow the reader to discern what will happen next...

A super, super read!

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