Rafael Fannen is a 14-year old boy who has won a minority scholarship to Our Lady of the Woods, an all male Catholic college preparatory school. Winning the scholarship quickly turns into a nightmare, as Rafe has to deal with the racism of his fellow students and his teachers. In addition to the culture shock, Rafe also has to deal with his burgeoning sexuality.
When Rafeack and take control of his life, the lives of everyone around him will change. But none more than his own.Bereft addresses the issues of bullying, sexuality, child abuse, mental illness and racism in a haunting and deeply compelling style.
Gidney’s storytelling abilities, complemented by his deftness with words and strong writing skills, result in an outstanding contribution to the young adult genre. The believably realized characters, strong description, and relevant knowledge of the adolescent experience, when combined with his willingness to take on the “hard” controversial issues facing today’s youth’s marks him as an author to watch. Undoubtedly his future work will be even more rewarding for readers.
–Lambda Literary Review
Winner of the 2014 Bronze Moonbeam Award
Winner of the 2015 Silver Independent Publisher Book Award