The Abstinence Teacher by Tom Perrotta read by Campbell Scott

Firm writing, good characters, heavy social issues, but no story.

Meet Ruth. A divorced mother who teaches sex education at a public high school is more or less forced to teach abstinence according to a rosy if delusional Christian fundamentalist agenda. Meet Tim: divorced, saved and reformed by an evangelic Jesus-loving pastoral group, coaching soccer. Imagine supper:

Tonight was Lemon Pepper Mama, a recipe she had gotten from Five Hundred More Ways To Cook Chicken or It Doesn’t Matter How You Cook It It’s Still the Same Crap or Eat Chicken Till You Die. Because there were nights when that was what it felt like. Like you were just some stupid animal put on earth to eat a few hundred thousand animals who were even stupider than you were, then to disappear without a trace…

And so we are left in between chicken, abstinence and temptation.