Pray the Gay Away : A Southern Thing

  • by Sara York
  • Narrated by Jason Frazier
  • Series: A Southern Thing
  • 5 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Star football player Jack Miller had it all. The perfect family, looks, girls hanging on his every word, and the respect of most people in his town. But one thing was missing - a man to be his own.
When Andrew Collins showed up in small-town, conservative Sweet, Georgia, he looked more scrawny mutt than high school senior. Andrew's plan was to keep his head down and graduate high school, leaving his family behind to start his real life.
When he meets Andrew, Jack thinks he's found heaven, but reality holds him in check until one night when his lips gently slide across Andrew's and fireworks go off.
As lust and something a little deeper brings them together, compelling them to take chances, people start to notice. Then the unthinkable happens, and Jack's parents find out he likes guys. The battle lines are drawn and they vow to pray the gay away.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Gay raised in the south & religous homes must read

Would you consider the audio edition of Pray the Gay Away to be better than the print version?

I personal grew up in the South and my father was a Baptist minister. Sara York understands the unspoken rule that a Southern ministers family must portray the "image of perfection". The second rule is that "parents are always right" and "children are always wrong". Southern culture often places ministers and their families as examples of the "perfect family". Therefore, if you are gay then you must lie or die but never shame the family by telling the truth. That is what this book is about. I personally know how accurate her image is of a Southern ministers family is because I grew-up in such a family. It is what all gay youth should never face.


What was one of the most memorable moments of Pray the Gay Away?

The accurate depicting of what an ultra religious ministers family.


Which character – as performed by Jason Frazier – was your favorite?

Jason Frazier ability to switch voice between adult and child stimulates the emotional power of this performance.


Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The last two chapter bought me to tears and anger. The level of intensity caused my to yell out "hit the basted and fight back". However, It very hard to fight back when you think your actions have the power to destroy those that you love.


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- John Chapman

Heartbreaking and Beautiful tale of young love.

Would you consider the audio edition of Pray the Gay Away to be better than the print version?

I don't know, I've only listened.


What did you like best about this story?

Billy! I cannot wait to listen to his story. When Frazier spoke those words that York so beautifully wrote, "I don't think God made me right." I literally died! I had to stop and walk away from the story for a few days, it just broke my heart. It endeared me to the character though, and I'm excited to see where Billy's journey takes him.


What does Jason Frazier bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The youth of the characters. His voice is vibrant and exciting when needed, and then it's defeated and broken down as well. I loved the voice he gave these characters.


If you could take any character from Pray the Gay Away out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Billy!


Any additional comments?

Anyone on the outside looking in would think that Jack Miller has the picture perfect life. Star football player, well behaved son of the local Preacher and a ton of great friends. If you looked through the well-hidden cracks in the surface, you would see the truth. Jack is miserable trying to be someone he is not, his father is the very definition of the word hypocrite, his family is a stone’s throw away from falling apart, and all those friends that gather around him, they are only there because of Jack’s status.

Andrew Collins and his parents move to Jack’s small town in an effort to escape the scandal in their last town when Andrew was caught kissing another young man. His parents are emotionally distant, controlling and verbally abusive at best. When the Preacher at their new church suggests that his son Jack be a shoulder for Andrew to lean on while he adjusts to life in the new town, no one could know the ramifications of the two young men becoming friends.

When two kindred spirits unite they will recognize each other straight away. That is what happens with Jack and Andrew. They fall hard and fast and do the best they can to keep their budding romance a secret from everyone. When their parents learn the truth behind their relationship the results are both volatile and disturbing.

I will start by saying this story is very dark, dramatic, angsty and deep. But there is also love and understanding between the two young men that lead the story. Jack knows he is gay but he hides his sexuality from everyone for fear of how they will react. Besides, he is the star quarterback and the Preachers eldest son, a certain appearance is expected of him, one that does not include an attraction to the same sex. Andrew got caught with his hand in the cookie jar, so to speak, and his life has been a living hell ever since. His parents use demeaning tactics like fasting and starvation to ensure their son walks the line, or at least their line that is. So while the way these two young men were treated by their own parents, the people that are supposed to love them unconditionally, made my blood boil; I have to give York credit for making their time together something beautiful and intriguing. Jack and Andrew are both very young and inexperienced. York captures that youth, inexperience and vulnerability perfectly in the story and its equal parts endearing and heart breaking.

Narrated by Jason Frazier and I really enjoyed how his voice was as young as the characters were. He really captured that jock persona for Jack while keeping true to the awkward and unsteady aspect of Andrew. I felt like he completely immersed himself in these characters so I had a feel and vision of what they would be like we’re I to meet them in real life. And oh my word, Jack’s father, between York’s creation of this monster on paper and Frazier bringing this vile human being to life, he literally made me sick. By the end of the story I just wanted to climb into my I-pod and strangle him with my bare hands, then grab Jack and Andrew and hug them until they passed out.

While the story is difficult at times to listen to, it’s so well written and conveyed, I have to list it as a must read. I love when an author can take on controversial subjects, like a small Georgia town stuck in the middle ages and a hypocritical minister and tell them in such a way that I am engaged throughout. I was born and raised at Ft. Benning Georgia, so I know first-hand that what York wrote in this story is sadly true to fact more often than not. Add to that Frazier’s narration that chronicled this journey for Jack and Andrew with such emotions as awe, shock, concern and love and I don’t see how you could pass this one up.

Be warned if you have triggers… this story contains scenes of violence. But there is also love and compassion thrown in the mix.

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- Tams (TTC Books and more)

Book Details

  • Release Date: 05-21-2014
  • Publisher: Sara York