Title: Teach Me
Author Name: Sloan Johnson
Publication Date: November 25, 2014
Two words stripped Austin Pritchard of the privileged life he’s used to. The moment he uttered the words, “I’m gay,” he realized there is no such thing as unconditional love. Now, he’s gone from traveling the world with his family to living on the streets trying to figure out how he’s going to stay in school.
A chance opportunity changes everything. Austin impresses the foreman and lands a job, but even more, he catches the eye of David Becker, who is determined to teach him that true love doesn’t come with strings.
The only thing David had as a child was love. His family struggled to keep food on the table and a roof over their heads. That has driven him to stay focused on his goals; become a tenured professor at a university and save enough money to build a home of his own. It’s not until he sees an insecure college student working on his new house that he realizes that he hasn’t planned on someone to share his life with. He’s about to learn that everything he’s already accomplished is nothing compared to the task of making Austin see that he is worthy of love.
Austin is a typical college student until one day, he finds himself without his home, without his family and without his self worth. It falls on Austin, a young college student, to pick his life up, dust himself off and find a new path. Austin grew up in an oppressive home and thus, he felt he was always playing a role. Once those constraints came off, however, Austin had to figure out who he really was. He is lucky to be found by some street wise kids who help Austin stay out of trouble.
Casey and Bree take Austin in to their group – they show him how to survive. I really enjoyed Bree. She was an optimistic bright spot in the beginning of the story. Casey should have his own story, as his issues are many – his patience is little and despite Bree’s love, Casey’s issues prevent him from embracing her love. After a while, I feel incredibly sad for Bree and really dislike Casey.
Then there’s David. A professor at the University, he is living his own dream and meets Austin by chance. However, when he sees Austin’s demeanor, David recognizes something in Austin. Over the course of several weeks, David coaxes Austin out of his shell.
When the truth comes out, David and Austin find themselves navigating a relationship with little to no experience. Both of them have notions on what a relationship should be like or can be like, both will make mistakes. But, in those mistakes, they both learn valuable lessons.
I found it a little hard that Austin kept David a such a distance, even after David reiterated that he was in love with Austin. But, I do understand that with as much emotional abuse that Austin went through, that it was going to take a sledge hammer to break down his walls. Luckily, David is just the man for the job.
This was a great story about unconditional love, finding yourself and mending family ties. There were a few grammatical errors (wrong pronouns, misspelled words, etc.), but nothing that another quick pass through the story by an editor shouldn’t fix.
When she was three, her parents received their first call from the principal asking them to pick her up from school. Apparently, if you aren’t enrolled, you can’t attend classes, even in Kindergarten. The next week, she was in preschool and started plotting her first story soon after.
Later in life, her parents needed to do something to help their socially awkward, uncoordinated child come out of her shell and figured there was no better place than a bar on Wednesday nights. It’s a good thing they did because this is where she found her love of reading and writing. Who needs socialization when you can sit alone in your bedroom with a good book?
Now, Sloan is a tattooed, purple haired mom of two kids, one of which was a thank you present to her husband for letting her get a Staffordshire Terrier with more anxiety issues than Sloan has, which is saying something. She’s been kicked out of the PTA in two school districts and is no longer asked to help with fundraisers because she’s been known to lose herself in a good book and forget that she has somewhere to be.