Critically acclaimed author of We Are the Ants—described as having “hints of Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five” (School Library Journal)—opens up about what led to an attempted suicide in his teens, and his path back from the experience.
“I wasn’t depressed because I was gay. I was depressed and gay.”
Shaun David Hutchinson was nineteen. Confused. Struggling to find the vocabulary to understand and accept who he was and how he fit into a community in which he couldn’t see himself. The voice of depression told him that he would never be loved or wanted, while powerful and hurtful messages from society told him that being gay meant love and happiness weren’t for him.
A million moments large and small over the years all came together to convince Shaun that he couldn’t keep going, that he had no future. And so he followed through on trying to make that a reality.
Thankfully Shaun survived, and over time, came to embrace how grateful he is and how to find self-acceptance. In this courageous and deeply honest memoir, Shaun takes readers through the journey of what brought him to the edge, and what has helped him truly believe that it does get better.
Shaun David Hutchinson is the author of numerous books for young adults, including The Past and Other Things That Should Stay Buried, The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza, At the Edge of the Universe, and We Are the Ants. He also edited the anthologies Violent Ends and Feral Youth and wrote the memoir Brave Face, which chronicles his struggles with depression and coming out during his teenage years. He lives in Seattle, where he enjoys drinking coffee, yelling at the TV, and eating cake. Visit him at ShaunDavidHutchinson.com or on Twitter @ShaunieDarko.
"Shaun David Hutchinson has been hammering out one brilliant book after another, and Brave Face is his most honest and courageous one yet. This profound memoir is a triumph--a full-throated howl to the moon to remind us why we choose to survive and thrive."
– Brendan Kiely, New York Times bestselling author of Tradition
"Shaun David Hutchinson has long been one of our brightest lights and best storytellers. In Brave Face, he shares all the sh*t he had to survive to get there - and how we can too. Brutal and essential.”
– Sam J. Miller, award-winning author of The Art of Starving
"As much a book about coming out as it is a book about simply coming to be, Brave Face is the bravest memoir I've read in years. Illuminating, brutally honest, poignant, and sometimes laugh out loud funny, this isn't a book just for queer kids, it's a book for any teen (or adult) who feels left out, rejected, confused, and scared about their place in the world.”
–Kathleen Glasgow, New York Times bestselling author of Girl in Pieces
"Fearless and resonant, Hutchinson’s memoir explores personal darkness with profound candor and earned wisdom. Courageous, devastating, and beautiful.”
–Caleb Roehrig, author of Death Prefers Blondes
"It takes talent to render personal truth with clear-eyed honesty, and deep empathy for the wounded, bewildered selves we’ve been. It takes greater bravery to share that truth. Hutchinson has talent and bravery in droves and BRAVE FACE is a triumph. This book is a balm and I’m grateful it exists."
–Alex London, bestselling author of Proxyand Black Wings Beating