As Far as You’ll Take Me

Listening Library. Feb. 2021. 838p. $56. ISBN 9780593340288.
Gr 9 Up–Seventeen-year-old Marty has plenty to be feel concerned about. When he came out as gay to his parents, they were not supportive; his Kentucky church refuses to accept him; he is in a dysfunctional relationship with his best friend, Megan; and he has an anxiety disorder to boot. Lying to his parents about a supposed acceptance into a musical program in the UK, Marty finds the courage to fly to London, planning to find a job and never return. In London he is broke and unemployed but also meets a welcoming group of friends for the first time and becomes involved with a charismatic yet unreliable teen. Marty’s summer proves to be full of self-discovery and honest reflection. Michael Crouch voices the character-driven book in the first person, adeptly expressing Marty’s angst along with his love for music. Thanks to Crouch’s insightful narration, listeners experience Marty’s overwhelming anxiety right along with him. Marty’s friends are from all over Europe, and Crouch does a credible job with all the required accents.
VERDICT Listeners interested in the wide complexity of LGBTQIA+ experiences or mental health issues will want this one.

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