Well With My Soul by Gregory G. Allen tells the story of two brothers, Jacob and Noah Garrett. One is gay, the other straight. One is liberal, the other conservative. Both are on their respective paths in life and as is often with brothers, their life paths take them in different directions. As it true with siblings, they have their own interpretations of their life growing up together and how their parents treated the other brother, which in my family has been very revealing.
The story itself is an emotional ride through the ups and downs of sibling rivalry, filtered through the gay/straight and liberal/conservative lenses. Jacob is lured off to New York by the dream of a successful career in modeling and show business with all the glitz and glamour that goes with it. With Jacob off in New York, Noah feels duty bound to stay home with their mother, hurt by Jacob’s rejection of their small town comfortable life in the American South. As the story progresses, the brothers find their paths cross and have taken some unexpected twists, much like life itself.
The story itself is a look not only at the relationship between the two brothers as they examine their own relationship with the other, but also their relationships with the significant others in their lives, and most importantly, their relationship with themselves.
Allen’s storytelling is touching, at times very light-hearted and at other times very deep, but always provoking. The story resonated with me in such that I began to examine my relationship with my brothers. A definite must read.