Growing up gay can’t be easy, but growing up gay and obese – and in Sarnia of all places! – is hardly an experience for the faint of heart. In Peter Paddington, however, Brian Francis has created a hero capable of not only surviving the challenge, but, With the aid of family, friends, and imaginary lovers, navigating the treacherous waters of adolescence in style. Undeniably funny, even laugh-out-loud in a couple of places, what is most impressive is Francis’s gift for observing quiet, understated details that manage to express the things we’re saying when we’re not really saying them. The time (1980s) and the place (suburbia) are also nicely captured. Indeed sometimes painfully so, for anyone who was there.