Just read the first sex scene between Trevor and Zach and whew....hawt.
It made me realize that Brite is largely responsible for the positive aspects of my budding sexuality. At the time I first read this book (again, 14 or 15) I hadn't had experiences with men yet, apart from a couple of makeout sessions. Poppy's taste in men is very similar to my own (again, goth, tortured, pale, awkward) and writes of them and their sexuality in terms of beauty and body-worship. In our culture, we're just not used to thinking of men as beautiful, but Poppy compares certain *blush* body parts with rose petals and genuinely relishes their expressions of desire and pleasure in a very visceral way. Further, when hesitation is expressed on the part of Trevor, Zach slows, stops, and talks things through with him. There is clear, verbalized consent present. Despite the violence in this relationship in and out of the bedroom, everything is consensual. Upon pure happenstance, I experienced erotic literature with body-positive imagery (towards the sex that I'm primarily attracted to), consent, with gender and sexual ambiguity. And the ambiguousness was portrayed as ok, just a part of adolescence/life. I was on my way to becoming a sexual adult that might just have turned out ok, despite my culture. I was on my way to appreciating men's bodies even though I was mostly unfamiliar with them. That's pretty cool.
Upon this realization, if you happen to know a goth kid, whose primary interest is boys, who also might be experiencing sexy things sometime in the near-ish future, I recommend this book. Some of it is not necessarily healthy (violence, blood, etc) in the relationships therein, but it only helped my angsty teenage soul.