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I too have loved this book since I was about 16 years old, nearly 40 years ago! The character of Troy seemed, to me, like everything a young man should be - strong, handsome, sexy, confident in himself and who he was, not intimidated by his so-called betters. In fact every single character in the book stands out because the writing is real and gets to the heart of what the small town American mentality was like at this time. I'm very surprised it hasn't been made into a film. In the right hands it could be a classic.
I read this book when if first came out I was 17 years old and had my whole wonderful life ahead of me. I have loved this book for all these years it had love, forbidden meetings lots of black coffee and a wonder story about life as only Bab H. Deal could write!! Loved it. Will read it again.