A Better Place

( 33 )

Overview

A Better Place is the story of two boys from two completely different worlds struggling to find themselves amongst a whirlwind of confusion. Will the strength they find in each other be enough to overcome the hatred and abuse of others? The unlikely pair struggle through friendship and heartbreaks, betrayal and hardships, to find the deepest desire of their hearts.

Casper, the poorest boy in school, goes through life as the "invisible boy," and Brendan, the captain of the high ...

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Overview

A Better Place is the story of two boys from two completely different worlds struggling to find themselves amongst a whirlwind of confusion. Will the strength they find in each other be enough to overcome the hatred and abuse of others? The unlikely pair struggle through friendship and heartbreaks, betrayal and hardships, to find the deepest desire of their hearts.

Casper, the poorest boy in school, goes through life as the "invisible boy," and Brendan, the captain of the high school varsity football team, has it all; muscles, money, fame, and popularity. So, when Brendan takes an interest in Casper, their friendship goes in a direction that no one would have ever guessed. The two boys share nothing on the surface, but underlying each boy's reputation lies a yearning to be free, a yearning to find a better place.

Mark A. Roeder has written and published some two dozen novels in his Gay Youth Chronicles, a continuing series not only for gay youth, but readers of all ages and sexual orientations. Since the age of fifteen, Roeder has been turning out articles, columns, and novels, but for the last several years has dedicated his life to writing heart-warming stories about gay youth. He currently resides in Bloomington, Indiana. Information on his current and upcoming books can be found at markroeder.com.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781456573904
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
  • Publication date: 1/31/2011
  • Pages: 396
  • Sales rank: 727,230
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark A. Roeder has written and published some two dozen novels in his Gay Youth Chronicles, a continuing series not only for gay youth, but readers of all ages and sexual orientations. Since the age of fifteen, Roeder has been turning out articles, columns, and novels, but for the last several years has dedicated his life to writing heart-warming stories about gay youth. He currently resides in Bloomington, Indiana. Information on his current and upcoming books can be found at markroeder.com.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 33 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(25)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2012

    This is a great book, written exactly as a teenager would have w

    This is a great book, written exactly as a teenager would have written it. I think those who don't give it great reviews don't get that. I loved it!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 19, 2008

    This book is amazing!

    I've had this book on my wish list for months and was finally able to buy it a few days ago. I finished the book in like three days. It was simply amazing. I could NOT put it down. The way Mark wrote about emotions and feelings made it seem like I was in the book myself. Reading some of the other reviews about how he is too mushy and repetitive and unrealistic, but I didn't think the book was anything but perfect. I definitely recommend this book for everyone that wants a great read!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2012

    Highly recomended

    Wowww.. I have no words to describe how enjoy reading this book..
    It was excellent the Author Mark A. Roeder made an awesome job because he put all his attention to every detail in the book making his audience wanting to read more and more.. The protagonists in this book sometimes made me almost cry, other times laught and some others just gave me hope to believe it is possible to find and to be faithful to the one you love.. I don't want to tell about the story because this is something you need to find out when you read it by yourself.. I have purchased 3 books from the same author and all of them have been fantastic.. Excuse my writing English is my second language... But these books are also helping me to improve the language... Please read this books you won't be dissapointed, I promise!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2012

    Even though i never wrote a review i got this book! I loved it s

    Even though i never wrote a review i got this book! I loved it so much! Its my number one favorite book in the world!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2007

    Beautiful Story

    I came across this book and others by Mark A Roeder purely by accident I was looking throught the B&N website for gay themed books. I was attracted by the desription of the book. I am so glad that there is a writer like Mark out there who is presenting a positive image of gay youth--as an older gay man I only wish that someone like Mark was around writing books like this when I was a teenager or that the society was different then and would have even allowed it. More people need to read Mark's books and wake up and smell the coffee and realize it is only about love not some great homosexual agenda

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2007

    A reviewer

    while I am sure that the writer put a lot of time into his work, it's too mushy in some spots and somewhat un-realistic. I much more prefer a story where the situations are realistic.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2007

    Eh.

    From the reviews, I was expecting a pretty good book, but when I was actually reading it, it turned out pretty bad. The writing style was too repeatative, often restating things many time. I also didn't like the unrealistic situations. Some of the moments were indeed exciting, but the others were just dull.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2007

    It will knock the heaving air out of you...

    There are no more words than 'devastatingly phenomenal' to describe what an intelligent and dreamy book A BETTER PLACE is. Bravo Mr. Roeder, you've masterel the novel inside and out.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2007

    WoOw.... iis incredable how i havent read the book and love it already

    OMG i cannot wait to read this book.... from what i hear is increadible.... i mean [[ YOU NEED TO READ THIS BOOK TO FIND OUT HOW GAY PPL HAVE TO GOW THROW SPECILLY 2 BOYS... Cuming from a teenager whos been throw all of this amazing how this charecters can express them self like that..... the book is more than outstanding.. Very good book foR ppl that are gay...

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2007

    A good but very real book

    This was an okay book, but i had to stop reading it. Some of the things happening to the characters in the book were very realistic and somewhat insulting. I dont want to give any thing away from the book but be warned. read it if and only if you are able to handle the truth of some of the horrors in our world.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2006

    I'm fairly disappointed

    I was fairly disappointed when I read Mark Roeder's A Better Place, of course this is my own opinion. So far I have read this and Outfield Menace and this compared to Outfield Menace, I'd prefer to read Outfield Menace. I enjoy reading and I love exploring deeper into the characters, however I was not able to find that pleasure in this story because the characters were just so... So 'Gary-Sue' and hopefully several will know what it means since it's very similar to 'Mary-Sue'. There were several exciting moments (especially when Branden went to the mental hospital place) but after that it just slammed head first into 'mushy-mushy-lovey-dovey ness' and unbelievable (and unrealistic) situations. I was annoyed about how the entire story was fluffy and yes I know there are moments in life that are like that. I know things like this happen in real life but still, it's to the point of where it is not worth believing because of the situations. I admit it took me about 2 months to finish the book because I was disappointed when I began reading it and only finished reading it because the power went out at my house, but yes, I'm finished with my rant and I simply say being the type of person I am, I was disappointed on how things went through out the story and how unbelievable and unrealistic it was. Again this is my opinion and I have different views then several other people who commented.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2005

    One of my favorites of all time!!!

    This book drew me in right from the start. I fell in love with both of the main characters, and all the twists, turns, and troubles that these characters go through made this book a very fast and very good read. Part I of the book is simply amazing and I loved it. Part II however was just OK for me. The story seemed to drag a bit, but the story ties in with Roeder's other books which is very cool. But none-the-less everyone should read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2005

    FANTASTIC LOVE STORY!

    This is one of the best love stories I've ever read. I fell in love with Casper and Brendan. I wanted to feel the warmth of their embraces. I forgive them for not knowing me. After all, I am just the reader.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2005

    poignant and exciting

    this is a great book. I actually finished readin it in 2 days (thats like a new record for me). The story is definitely engrossing, and not entirely cheesy/predictable. Although the ending seemed unfinished to me. but its really minor. (i was a bit disappointed). The switchin view of narrative seemed nice in the beginning, but it wouldve been better if the author used this technique describing the same event, instead of using it to advance the story line. but overall, great.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2004

    OMG I loved this book!!

    I loved this book...it was amazing!!! The emotion you could actually feel for the characters was indescribable. I think that this book would make an outstanding movie.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2004

    Fantastic!

    You better believe this is a great read! Order it now! The characters are fast and compelling...the prose is wonderful!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2003

    Almost 5 stars

    Being a very big reader of gay fiction, i did find this story pretty good. Like another reviewer said, I was expecting a Cinderella story. One does connect to the characters on a certain level, but I think that the story is hindered by first-person narrative, as are most--if not all-of Mark's books (so I only read books of his that I have been given as gifts). If he switched to third-person I think I could have connected more thoroughly with the characters. It's not the story, which is very good, but I feel disconnected with first-person narrative. I wouldn't read the book a second time because of the first-person thing (that's just how I am). But if this had been written in the third-person format this book would have been another 'Laudanum' (by Cray Donnelly) or on par with Christopher Rice. Of Mark's novels that I have read, I liked this one the best, but he needs to get out of the first-person rut to become a 5-star worthy writer in my opinion.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2003

    Best book i've ever read.

    I had read a few tittles wich I enjoed, but nevr had i read a book with so much emotion. the author realy depicted the troubles of two boys, it deals with being in love and not being loved back, Coming out, Acceptance, Homophobia, parents, and it ends in a good term. Defenetly worth buying. I would recomd this to anybody looking for a good bock or to learn what some of us (gay) have to go through.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2002

    Idealized Romantic Fiction, but EXTREMELY Powerful and Important

    (From ME: Sorry about the huge block of text, but bn.com doesn't allow much formatting.) We all read novels for different reasons and with different expectations. When I read A Better Place, I was expecting a sort of ¿Cinderella Story¿¿poor, downtrodden boy is swept away by the godlike High School super- stud and lives happily ever after. I definitely got my money¿s worth on that front, but had absolutely no idea I would read anything so incredibly powerful and emotional. I was not at all expecting that I would develop such a love and, yes, deep emotional bond with the characters. I¿ve never experienced anything quite like it. Casper, the poor boy, is almost the poster child for ¿whatever possibly can go wrong, has¿. He¿s almost a caricature at times¿but I SO DEEPLY cared for him and what he felt and experienced and thought. Roeder¿s writing style¿while judged by some elsewhere in online reviews as ¿immature¿¿was done with the purpose of making the reader FEEL what it¿s like to be 15-year old Casper. I think it was remarkable¿ Brendan, the football jock, is similarly almost too perfect to be true¿but the things that he goes through, the decisions he makes and the thoughts he has are likewise so powerful. Brendan is like the IDEAL of who we all wish we could be or have as a soul mate. In fact, I¿m not too proud to say that I think of the character of Brendan as supremely heroic for who he is. This IS only a romantic fantasy, but I¿d be willing to put Brendan up as a young gay role model anywhere, at any time. In fact, through the character of Brendan, Mark Roeder has written what I would consider the MOST POWERFUL, beautiful, thought- provoking and inspiring dialog I¿ve ever read in any gay fiction (the opening paragraph on page 313). By the time I reached the final page, I¿d read something that spoke to me very deeply. I¿ve been accused many times of being a ¿hopeless romantic¿¿and will freely admit that I am¿but this story meant so much more to me than that. I couldn¿t recommend it highly enough. I timidly have to admit, though, that there was many a grammatical, editing or spelling error to be found¿a common feature of P.O.D. books¿but I¿m more than willing to overlook those, given the situation. While A Better Place is actually the third novel in Roeder¿s six-volume Gay Youth Chronicles series, it ended up being the one I read first. I actually read it completely, cover- to-cover, TWICE online before buying it and reading it AGAIN in hardcopy. I¿ve never felt so drawn to any work of fiction before and it¿s because of the power of the story, the love I found I have for the characters and the way the entire novel made me feel. The complete Gay Youth Chronicles canon (The Soccer Field is Empty, Someone is Watching, A Better Place, Someone is Killing the Gay Boys of Verona, Keeper of Secrets, and Do You Know That I Love You?) has provided the most enjoyable fictional world for me of anything I¿ve ever read¿the eternal saga of Verona, Indiana. Each novel has a distinct flavor and deals with some very important topics. I would wholeheartedly suggest you purchase and read ALL of them, and in the above order. While A Better Place can indeed stand alone, I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND reading AT LEAST The Soccer Field is Empty first. A Better Place contains ¿spoilers¿ for the earlier story, which¿in all honesty¿made Soccer Field extremely difficult for me to read (see my review of that incredible book). PLEASE read and understand this book for what it is¿and don¿t be deterred by petty online reviews by anonymous readers you may have seen elsewhere. A Better Place and Mark Roeder deserve so much more than that.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2002

    Can you find a better novel? No!

    Brendan and Casper are just like other boys who are having problems with life and love, but it doesn't help when you're a gay boy around a bunch of bigots, especially if you aren't even sure about who you are yet. Mark is a writer who knows how to share a story in ways that make you care about people who might not fit in.

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