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Mysterious Skin
     

Mysterious Skin

4.3 37
by Scott Heim
 

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At the age of eight Brian Lackey is found bleeding under the crawl space of his house, having endured something so traumatic that he cannot remember an entire five–hour period of time.

During the following years he slowly recalls details from that night, but these fragments are not enough to explain what happened to him, and he begins to believe that

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Mysterious Skin 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 37 reviews.
carlosmock More than 1 year ago
Mysterious Skin by Scott Heim Brian Lackey wakes up in the crawl space of his house at age eight unable to remember what had transcribed in the last five hours after a little league baseball game. He's found by his sister Deborah. Brian's life is tormented by the memories of this event, first assuming he was abducted by an alien ship - encouraged to believe this by a lonely woman, Avalyn Friesen, who claims in a national TV program to be abducted herself, and who lives twenty miles from Brian's Little River, KS. She uses the situation to get inside Brian's pants.... After graduating from High School, and with the help of the "secondary characters," Brian's memory starts to come back. He has to search for Neil McCormick, who was there on the night in question when Brian suffered his "episode." He befriends Eric Preston, himself in love with Neil, and with his help, the abduction theory slowly turns into a tale of sexual abuse that involves Neil and his Little League Coah - a story that has been hidden for ten years. The book travels from 1981 to 1991 in rural Kansas. Told from the first person point of view from most of the main characters - a fun way to offer different points of view - the book deals with one of the most heated topics of the century: sexual abuse by people in power. Whether they are coaches - as in this story - teachers, or priests, the abuse is characterized by people of authority who abuse their power to inflict pain and suffering to vulnerable children. The story is a metaphor for what that might look like. Neil and Brian are two eight year old boys who have been sexually abused by their Little League Coach, but their two reactions couldn't be more different. Neil has embraced his homosexuality when he meets the coach. His father is dead and his mother is a provocative though loving drunk. Neil fancies himself in love with the coach and readily submits to all that is asked of him. "What matters is how, for the first time in my life, I felt as if I existed 'for' something." p. 38 Brian, on the other hand, is the product of a loving, mildly dysfunctional family. For Brian the experience is so painfully disturbing that he buries it in his subconscious, blacking it out so that as the years unwind he becomes fascinated with what happened to him during his "lost hours", eventually reaching the conclusion that he was abducted by aliens. Heim is a fine writer, a poet whose descriptions are often startling and beautiful. The book is an easy and delightful read in spite of its dark subject. It builds the stories of the two boys on parallel paths until they gradually converge. And Heim does a terrific job with secondary characters, showing how they influence and are touched by the protagonists in ways that are different but no less important than they first anticipated. This should be on the top one hundred books to read...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Deeply disturbing, but deeply profound.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I felt like I was going 120 mph through this book. Normally for me, having multiple narrators are road blocks but I didn't mind the transitions here at all. This was a quick 2 day read that will not easily be forgotten.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book brings to life the consequences of betrayal; its impact on the betrayed and those around him; with such discomforting insight• The movie puts a clear and honest visual - faces to the words• A must read for survivors as well as friends and family of any man or boy who has stood at the edge of humanity and peered into its dark abyss - and pondered where and how he fits into it all•
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iluvvideo More than 1 year ago
Two eight year old boys are molested by their Little League baseball coach and take different paths to discover the truth. Neil becomes a teenage gay hustler with a taste for older men. He has few friends and fewer confidants. Brian 'loses' any trace of what happened with the coach and believes he was a victim of a UFO abduction. They seem to be on an eventual collision course in search of the truth. Brian uncovers the true events on that terrible day long ago and Neil's participation. Neil discovers that maybe sex with the coach was not quite the idealized, romantic encounters that he remembers. Both young men seem to be at a crucial point in their lives. How can they reconcile what happened so long ago and how it affects their current attitudes towards friends and love. The graphic subject matter is not for the easily disturbed. Graphic sex, language and violent situations occur throughout the story. But they are not meant to shock, but simply to allow us to experience as close as possible these events in both boys lives. Mr Heim does a masterful job. Both sides of the story are told with equal import. Neither seems sensationalized. Unfortunately, the subject matter may limit the audience to read this book. I found it cathartic, a triumph of the human spirit in spite of some terrible events. The end comes too soon. I want to see both these young men move forward with their lives having finally put the past behind them.
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Nyssa_B More than 1 year ago
Although Scott Heim has written several excellent books, Mysterious Skin is his best. It was made into a movie several years ago that is also amazing. The book focuses on the separate lives of two teenagers living in Kansas who are very different but share a common past. The first, Neil, is a teenage prostitute who seems to not care about what has happened to him or where he's going. The second teenager, Brian, is a shy kid who is obsessed with UFOs and believes that he was abducted by aliens when he was young. As their two lives emerge, they discover the truth about the past they shared and how their different perceptions of the situation led them to different futures.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book is wonderful! The topics are something that a lot of people do not wish to talk about, but this book takes you there and beyond. I actually felt what the characters were feeling. Its that good. I only wished that this story could keep going. Its a read that will fill you with emotions.