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|Viral : the fight against AIDS in America|
Author: Bausum, Ann
Thirty-five years ago, it was a modern-day, mysterious plague. Its earliest victims were mostly gay men, some of the most marginalized people in the country; at its peak in America, it killed tens of thousands of people. The losses were staggering, the science frightening, and the government's inaction unforgivable. The AIDS Crisis fundamentally changed the fabric of the United States. The history of the AIDS crisis through the lens of the brave victims and activists who demanded action.
Kirkus Reviews (04/01/19)
School Library Journal (+) (05/01/19)
Booklist (+) (05/01/19)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/06/19)
The Hornbook (+) (00/05/19)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 05/01/2019 *Starred Review* AIDS arrived in 1981 like a thief in the night, robbing people first of their health and then, inevitably, of their lives as the fatal epidemic blossomed into a global pandemic. Since then, as revealed in this well-researched book, some 700,000 Americans have died from HIV/AIDS and more than one million are living with the disease, many of them teenagers and young adults. The global statistics are even more staggering: 35 million people worldwide have died of the killer disease and a similar number, as of 2016, are living with it. Unfortunately, there has been little current information about this crisis available until the welcome arrival of Bausum’s offering. The whole story is here: not only current conditions but also the history and evolution of the disease. Adults who lived through its early and middle years will recognize familiar names—Rock Hudson, C. Everett Koop, Ryan White, Larry Kramer, and more—and organizations: Gay Men’s Health Crisis, ACT UP, NAMES Project, amfAR, TAG, and others. Activism continues today, though its presence remains largely unremarked, which is why Bausum’s book is so important: it is imperative that teens and young adults be made aware of the continuing dangers of unprotected sex and the misguided notion that AIDS could never happen to them. Bausum’s work provides an essential corrective. It is not to be missed. - Copyright 2019 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 05/01/2019 Gr 9 Up—Following Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights, Bausum chronicles another chapter in queer history: the HIV/AIDS crisis. Her three-part investigation begins before the epidemic, describing scenes of queer liberation in the wake of the 1969 Stonewall Riots. The "hedonistic crescendo" of the 1970s brought bathhouses, dance clubs, drugs, disco music, and free love. For gay men, the sexual freedom also introduced a mystery disease. Initially diagnosed as Kaposi's sarcoma (KS)—a slow-progressing cancer—the disease shook the queer community and beyond when it began to rapidly spread. Activist organizations like ACT UP and its predecessors pushed the Center for Disease Control and multiple presidential administrations to research an affordable cure, arguing that "SILENCE = DEATH." Bausum details the revolution while honoring some of the hundreds of thousands of lives lost. Expertly interweaving quotes from a variety of firsthand sources (medical professionals, writers, activists, etc.), Bausum's precise journalism takes on an engaging narrative quality. Occasional black-and-white photographs or images highlight key figures. Though her focus, like history's, tends to prioritize the white gay male experience, Bausum adds context to shift the focus onto other marginalized groups (particularly people of color) who were victimized in the HIV/AIDS panic. The structure paves the way for plenty of dramatic tension, resulting in a rousing, sympathetic account of a community's pain, fear, rage, and resiliency. A time line, source notes, and bibliography are appended. VERDICT Well-researched and expertly paced, this compelling title deserves a place in all teen collections.—Alec Chunn, Eugene Public Library, OR - Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.