Title: Pelican Fables
Cover Artist: n/a
Author: Ian Grey
Amazon: Buy Link The Pelican Fables
Genre: gay fiction/gay romance
Length: 142 pages (ebook only from the publisher site)
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
A guest review by Sirius
Summary: Out of age story where the main characters absolutely charmed me.
Carter Moran is a handsome new faculty member at Melbourne Prep, the Melbourne Preparatory School for Boys. After obtaining his master’s degree, Carter has accepted a one-year teaching position at Melbourne before he is to begin a fellowship at Harvard University. But amidst the conservatively charged atmosphere of the Melbourne School, Carter begins to come to terms with his sexual identity – an awakening made more difficult by the close relationship that develops between Carter and Adam Proffit, one of the school’s most promising students whom Carter suspects may be secretly attracted to him. While Carter tries in earnest to keep his relationship with Adam at arm’s length, this is complicated by Adam’s increasingly bold advances. Carter is torn between coming to terms with himself, maintaining the integrity of the teacher-student relationship, and fearing that he will either lead Adam on or break his heart in the process. After the friendship that develops between Carter and Adam crosses the line, the futures for which they have worked so hard hang in the balance as their fates are decided by a less than understanding school administration. At a school that prides itself on forging great leaders from the young men who go there, Carter and Adam are forced to decide who they want to become – a decision that will change their lives forever.
I decided to review one of my older favorites in this genre. As the blurb tells us, Adam is a senior student in the prestigious and very expensive high school for boys from influential and rich families, and Carter has accepted a teaching position there. I enjoyed both Carter and Adam’s journey very much.
Two warnings. First, if a sexual and more relationship between teacher and student bothers you, stay away. I would not say that it is really a love story, because the blurb is correct in that Carter tries hard to reject Adam’s advances because he is a teacher and because Adam is so very vulnerable. However what happened did not bother me in the slightest especially since it was not a continuous affair. And besides, Carter is twenty-two and Adam is eighteen. If we can read stories where age difference sometimes reaches twenty-five years (which I for the most part find too unbelievable), I would think that four year difference is negligible. However again if you cannot stomach any affairs between teacher and student, stay away. I did not feel anything but compassion and pity for both of them.
Another warning: you may find the ending unexpected and disappointing. For me it was perfect and everything worked out as I wanted it to, but I can see how people may be disappointed.
I thought these two guys were such great characters. Adam is a very nice guy, somebody who is one of the brightest students in the school where pretty much everybody is driven to succeed either because of their own desires or because of the expectations that their families put upon them. There are a lot of good things that this school teaches its students, and the author shows it, but at the same time we see that school’s officials are very, very hostile towards seeing even a hint that a student or teacher may be gay. Adam knows that he is gay, but he worked extremely hard to conceal that fact from everybody. And at the same time he is an eighteen year old, who is pretty desperate to have somebody return his feelings at the time we meet him. I think that the argument that he was in love with “idea of love” was quite solid. And I really liked Carter, somebody who overcame a tough childhood, achieved so much in his life already, and who is clearly destined for even bigger and better things.
I really liked another person in this story, however, to talk about this person would be talking spoilers and I really do not want to. I loved that author showed the students’ life, their studies and social activities. I loved that Adam was not just sitting around and feeling sorry for himself, but participated in a lot of things and to the fullest extent of his many talents.
I thought Adam behaved very in character at the end and was cheering him on. I thought he deserved it very much and that’s what his real love was shown to be basically from the beginning of the book.
I also really enjoyed that the author shows that change may start to come in the school and maybe one day new gay students and teachers will be able to breathe in Melbourne instead of suffocating like Adam and Carter and other people. I actually felt that author showed what such a repressive, conservative atmosphere can do to a student unsure of his sexual identity the best on the example of that person “who must not be named”. I felt so bad for him and was so happy for him as well. I believed that such atmosphere can mess up with your head that much. Your mileage may vary of course.