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The Sleeping Soldier
The Sleeping Soldier | Aster Glenn Gray
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After a century-long sleep, a Union soldier wakes up in 1965.
Cavalry lieutenant Russell Krause is all at sea in this strange new century of electric lights and automobiles. But he soon acquires a Caleb O’Connor, a kind-hearted, history-loving college student with secrets he’s desperate to hide. Caleb is gay, and he’s completely smitten with this lively, warm-hearted soldier, who has swiftly become his best friend.
But Russell’s nineteenth century understanding of friendship is far more affectionate than any 1960s friendship is allowed to be. In between telling Russell about escalators, record players, and the Civil Rights movement, Caleb has to explain that men in 1965 are no longer allowed to hold hands or share beds or kiss… which is tough, because Caleb would love to be kissing Russell.
Despite these chilling changes in social customs, Caleb and Russell’s loving friendship grows ever closer. But the cultural divide may prove wider than even love can bridge. Content period-typical attitudes in general, but especially toward homosexuality.
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The Sleeping Soldier | Aster Glenn Gray
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I suspect Aster Glenn Gray must be independently wealthy, since she spends so much time on research and virtually none on trying to get people to actually buy her books. 😂 But she has a bunch of loyal fans and deservedly so. This fairy tale retelling/friendship story/college story/young adult historical romance/time travel tale weaves disparate threads in in an immersive, quietly moving, and astonishingly insightful way.


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