OVERRIDE

Conversations and Cosmopolitans

Awkward Moments, Mixed Drinks, and How a Mother and Son Finally Shared Who They Really Are

Robert Rave and Jane Rave

St. Martin's Griffin

Part Augusten Burroughs, part Robert Leleux, Conversations and Cosmopolitans is a hilarious and touching memoir written by a mother, Jane, and her son, Robert, as they navigate their new relationship together after Robert announces in a hand-written letter that he is gay.

BOOK EXCERPTS

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER ONE
The End
Graduation day for a gay-in-training who’s decided to come out to his conservative Midwestern parents
 
 
Within one month of moving to New York, I sat down at my computer and began drafting what I affectionately refer to as “the message of honesty and love.” I poured my heart and soul into this letter, offering answers to every question my parents might have regarding my sexuality. At twenty-one, I viewed it as a great literary work and fantasized that one day, years after my death, it would be framed, like the letters of Virginia
READ THE FULL EXCERPT
BACK

REVIEWS

Praise for Conversations and Cosmopolitans

Praise for Conversations and Cosmopolitans:
"Robert is snarky without being bitchy, Jane dry but not drab, and this creates a balanced and infectious humor in the book that plays nicely with the moments of poignancy that pop up time and again. Read this book, grab a drink, start a conversation about it. You might cry some, you’ll probably laugh more, and you’ll realize that it’s really not that complicated." --Elle
 
"The voices of mother and son alternate in the brief segments of this book, advancing a story arc and commenting on one another’s reflections and memories in a dialogue 'written to both entertain and enlighten in the hope that other families will begin discussion in their own homes' and discover how 'enormously empowering living in the truth can be.' Robert’s coming-out letter to his parents sets the scene as he and his mother strive to interact authentically, learning about each other and learning of previously undiscovered aspects of themselves. Both are scarred from having been ostracized, he for his homosexuality, she for becoming scandalous as an unwed, pregnant high-school student. Zippy one-liners, ironic observations, and laugh-out-loud situations abound; for instance, Robert teaches his mother a gay vocabulary wholly new to her (no, Mom, B&D does not mean big and dumb). Mother-son bonding à la a progressive new Hallmark holiday movie." --Booklist
 
"Conversations and Cosmopolitans tells the story of a gay novelist's unique, seemingly-nothing-is-off-limits relationship with his mother. From Robert's manscaping adventures to Jane's experiences as a small-town pregnant teenager, Conversations tells the funny, heartfelt inside story of a relationship that became stronger after a gay son and his mother let down their guards and opened up to each other." --The Advocate
 
"As a mother of boys I hope one of them is gay so I can have this much fun with him." --Heather McDonald, writer and story producer for Chelsea Lately and the New York Times bestselling author of You'll Never Blue Ball in This Town Again
 
"A heartfelt look at a mother and son's relationship from both points of view. [L]augh-out-loud funny, touching and poignant..." --Lance Bass, Grammy-nominated singer, former member of *NSYNC, and author of Out of Sync
 
"CONVERSATIONS AND COSMOPOLITANS is the most endearing, inventive memoir I've read in ages.  Robert Rave and his mother Jane have managed to capture their beautiful relationship on the page, in a heartfelt, hilarious manner that never shies away from revealing awkward moments.  Aside from being a charming work of literature, CONVERSATIONS AND COSMOPOLITANS is a necessary book, a book we've all been waiting for, as it deals honestly, affectionately, and originally with an experience that's central to our contemporary lives--the struggle to know and love your parents and children exactly as they are." --Robert Leleux, author of The Memoirs of a Beautiful Boy
 
"Totally delightful. A reminder of what it's like to be the new kid. If being the new kid was being gay and the new school was a hierarchy of too-fab cliques and temperamental queen bees -- pun intended. The main character is really Manhattan. And as Robert struggles to get a life in Gay New York, Jane coaches him through the rough patches with her no-nonsense maternal charm." --Mishna Wolff, author of I'm Down
 
"I loved this book, funny, honest, and moving! Who could ask for more?" --Bryan Batt, actor on AMC's Emmy Award-winning drama "Mad Men" and author of the memoir She Ain't Heavy, She's My Mother

Reviews from Goodreads

BACK

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Robert Rave and Jane Rave

  • JANE RAVE grew up in a small Midwest town, doing all the things you do in a small town: cheerleading, band, and church activities.  She is the mother of three, grandmother of six and has been married for forty-four years.  Jane lives in Illinois.
    ROBERT RAVE is the author of two novels, Spin and Waxed, and currently lives in Los Angeles. Visit him at facebook.com/robertraveauthor or follow him on Twitter @RobertRave.
  • Robert Rave Zeke Ruelas
    Robert Rave
BACK

BUY THE BOOK

Available Formats and Book Details

Conversations and Cosmopolitans

Awkward Moments, Mixed Drinks, and How a Mother and Son Finally Shared Who They Really Are

Robert Rave and Jane Rave

BACK

FROM THE PUBLISHER

St. Martin's Griffin

BACK