I’ve been behind on my reading lately but I finally got around to The God Box by Alex Sanchez. Released in paperback in May of 2009 by Simon & Schuster, The God Box takes us into the psyche of a teenage boy who battles his sexuality and his faith.
Paul, given name Pablo, doesn’t want to admit that he is gay. When Manuel moves to town, Paul’s struggles only worsen. Manuel is openly gay. What Sanchez does so well is show us Paul’s internal battle with his sexuality. On top of that, Paul is a devoted Christian. He’s always been taught that he will go to hell because of his sexual orientation. Manuel is also a devoted Christian. The conflict is doubled because Manuel is everything that Paul is but Paul just can’t accept it.
There are two faults with the book for me. First, it feels a little preachy, especially towards the end. Second, Paul’s third conflict isn’t explored. At all. He has given up his Mexican heritage to be more American. There is so much that Sanchez could have done with this angle to enhance the story.
Overall, I feel like this is an important read. It tackles subjects many might feel as taboo with an open heart and open mind. Regardless of your own orientation or faith, The God Box is worth a look. Maybe you’ll get a little understanding from it.
Pick up this book at your local independant bookseller