About this book
Ivan E. Coyote is one of Canada's best-loved storytellers; her honest, wry, plain-spoken tales of growing up in the Yukon and living out loud on the west coast have attracted readers and live audiences around the world. For many years, Ivan has performed in high schools, where her talks have inspired and galvanized many young people to embrace their own sense of self and
to be proud of who they are. One in Every Crowd, Ivan's eighth book with Arsenal Pulp Press, is her first specifically for queer youth.
Comprised of new stories and others culled from previous collections, One in Every Crowd is for anyone who
has ever felt different or alone in their struggle to be true to themselves. Included are stories about Ivan's
own tomboy past in Canada's north, where playing hockey and wearing pants were the norm; and about her adult life in the big city, where she encounters both cruelty and kindness in unexpected places. Then there are the tales of family and friends who live their lives by example, like Francis, the curly-haired little boy who likes to wear dresses, and the brave kids she meets at queer youth camp.
Funny, inspiring, and full of heart, One in Every Crowd is really for everyone; it's about embracing and celebrating difference and feeling comfortable in one's own skin, no matter what the circumstance.
Coyote's kitchen-table style of storytelling is as lively on the page as at her in-person performances. Her vulnerability connects us to her story and helps us remember our own. Stories are a wonderful meeting place showing us where we're different and how we're the same. People of all ages will relate to finding the courage in being true to oneself while seeking acceptance and community.
Not only are Coyote's stories great regardless of age, the lessons and morals wrapped within them are just as important for adults to read.
The stories in this collection are stunning in every way: unaffected, compassionate, inspirational, and, as if that wasn't enough, achingly funny ... Great writing has the power to enrich lives; not all writing has the power to save them.
—Quill and Quire (STARRED REVIEW)
One in Every Crowd
is Ivan E. Coyote's first book written specifically for queer youth, and, in typical fashion, Coyote's storytelling abilities shine brightly throughout ... Ivan E. Coyote is a truly talented writer and her storytelling never ceases to amaze. Highly recommended.
This is Ivan E. Coyote's first collection for young adults, and I think it really hits the mark ... This may sound fatuous and sentimental to some, but the whole book is like getting a hug you didn't even know you needed.
—The CanLit Thing
This book is meant for queer youth, but it will appeal to anyone who struggles to be themselves in a world that rejects difference. Coyote brings her usual wit and grace to stories of growing up as a tomboy, of living life as a butch ... You'll also find a few great love stories and the distinct voice of a writer whose tales stick with you long after you've read them.
Sophisticated, earnest, plainspoken and intimate, this collection will speak to LGBTQ youth as well as straight youth, teens and adults.
A funny and empathetic collection of more than forty stories ... Teenagers confronting their sexuality, or who have otehrwise felt like outsiders, will feel as though they've gained an ally in Coyote ... These tales of compassionate relatives, finding love, and even the insecurities that stretch into adulthood should provide reassurance that there is indeed life after high school.
Coyote's One in Every Crowd
is to queer literature what Dan Savage's "It Gets Better Project" is to YouTube. This compilation of personal short stories delivers hope with a healthy dose of reality: you can't always choose your story but you can choose the role you play within it ... Fortunately, Ivan E. Coyote has made a career out of seeking out all queer kids and providing living proof that we are everywhere. Even if it isn't safe to be yourself, you are never alone. Whether you live deep in the Yukon or on the streets of NYC, there will be a community of one or one million to welcome you.
Ivan E. Coyote knows the hearts of teenagers. One in Every Crowd
is an homage to the outsider: to the young boy who steals his mother's lipstick, to the girl who slip-slides in and out of gender identifications, to the ones who can't put themselves in boxes. To the ones who cannot abide by the binary. It is a love-touched and memory-soaked ballad to queer youth ... One in Every Crowd
is a book that belongs in the hands of queer youth and in the hands of their oppressors. It's a heartfelt and rich look at what it's like to be else, to be outside, to toe the lines and then step over them. It can teach, it can support. It's a book that will change readers, and leave them knowing that being changed by it is a privilege.
There are so many vital stories in here; stories about how scary high schools still are even when you're an adult; stories about the different ways in which we find love; stories about boys who likes to wear dresses; stories about the deep conundrum of what bathroom to walk into. Every story is full of honesty, joy, warmth, pain, anger, and hope. Every story is markedly real. I felt like I knew every character in every story, or at least wanted to; I longed to jump into Coyote's world and take trips to the Yukon and have long talks and hearty laughs over coffee or alcohol. To tell stories. Scratch that; this wasn't something I longed for, but something that I felt would be completely natural, something that was pretty much as good as real. And any book, any story, that makes you feel that level of comfort, that is something special. Those are the books you never throw away. And I'll never throw One In Every Crowd
away - except if I find a youth who needs it. Then I'll gladly hand it over, and buy a few additional copies for their friends.
One in Every Crowd
hits all the bases ...
The book's strengths lie in the way you, as a reader, become so connected to the stories and interested in the entire group of family and friends because you know these intimate details about all of their lives and the same characters come up over and over again. You empathize with Coyote's cousin Christopher as a clumsy, awkward kid, you become invested in their father's wellbeing, you worry about the way Francis might turn out - you honestly feel as though you are catching up with a friend over coffee who just happens to tell amazing stories and gesture wildly and gush about the woman they're going to marry. The level of connection this book forms with the reader is unique and not easily achievable, but Coyote does it effortlessly.
These stories reveal how Coyote came to understand her own sense of self and the funny, touching, and occasionally painful events that helped her to do so.
Queer storyteller Ivan E. Coyote has created a diverse and charming array of vignettes for anyone who has ever fought to find who they really are.