Below are a list of people, places, things and institutions, and events that are mentioned in the first chapter of The Golden Boy.  Most, I think, could be figured out in context. Some that have been included here will be elaborated on and explained in greater detail as the story progresses in later chapters. As readers explores this alternate reality they will learn and understand more abut this world and its inhabitants, human and otherwise, its creatures, and its places, institution and events.

But, as only the first chapter is included here, I have tried to make this list comprehensive.

 

People:

Andrews, Sophia, 1962- : the mother of Grey Reed and ex-wife of Gavin Reed. She grew up in Momeyer, NC, and works at the NC Provincial Library, in Raligh, NC.

Deerman, Randolph, 1845- :A Cherokee, Randolph Deerman, or Runs With Deer, is Gavin’s primary physician. He is also a medicine elder of the tribe and a healing witch who has specialized in caring for paranormals.

Dunn, Carrie: The principal of Cooper Road Elementary and one of Gavin’s closest friends.

First Folk:

Called paranormals by the Empire and the Church, the First Folk include fairies, witches, and such sentient being as werewolves, selkies, wereotters, and other shapeshifters, centaurs, pans (or fauns), sylvans (tree- and water-numina), and Talking Beasts. Hybrids, the offspring of a union between a fairy and a normal human, are proscribed.

Latisha: Third grade student who is with Gavin in the Bestiary of Evil when the werewolf speaks to him. She witnesses his glowing.

Phillips, Christopher: Teaches third grade at Cooper Elementary, notorious for his anti-paranormal beliefs and behaviors.

Reed, Gavin Paul, 1959-: the protagonist of the novel, he is a librarian at Cooper Road Elementary, Raleigh, North Carolina. Divorced and the father of one son, Gavin is one-quarter fairy and three quarters normal human. He is passing for normal.

Reed, Grey Roland, 1997- : The only child of Gavin Reed and Sophia Andrews. He lives with his mother, Sophia Andrews.

Places

Columbian Empire:

The country in which the novel takes place and where all the characters live. In real-world terms, includes: Alaska, Canada (except for Quebec, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and New Brunswick), Baja or Lower California, Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Panama. Capital: Washington, DC. A monarchy, direct rule by the emperor. There is a Parliament, but after the 1861-65 Civil War, it has very limited authority. By the 1947 Treaty of San Francisco, Columbians, and others from the New World Alliance, do not go past the 30 West or the 179 East parallels. Old Worlders are not allowed to cross from their side.

Many places are the same as in the real-world, but a significant number are different, such as New Paris instead of New Orleans and California is divided into two provinces, Upper and Lower. North Carolina is Northern Carolina and so on.

The Empire won its independence from Britain after the Columbian Revolution of 1776-82. For more information, see History.

Cooper Road Elementary: a k-5 school in the Wake County Public Schools system, where Gavin and Carrie and Christopher Phillips work. It is located on Cooper Road in Raleigh, NC.

Northern Carolina: The real-world equivalent of this province is North Carolina. In the first chapter, these real NC places are mentioned: Joyce Kilmer National Forest and the Big Trees, Asheville and Buncombe County and Raleigh. The NC Provincial Zoo has the real-world zoo of the NC Zoo. In the novel, Kilmer is an Imperial Forest.

Northern Carolina Provincial Zoo: Established in 1974, the open habitat Zoo has no animals, birds, or reptiles from Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia. As required by imperial decree, it has a Bestiary of Evil, which houses magical creatures for educational purposes. Third grade students are required to visit a Bestiary to learn of the physicality of evil. Magical creatures are considered evil. In the Bestiary, Gavin sees these creatures: pegasi, unicorns, gargoyles, Cheshire cats, golden {and silver) gryphons, and werewolves.

Things, Institutions, and Events

ARM: Automatic Reporting Machine. Marked by a blue Columbian star, these machines, like ATMs, are used to report any suspected paranormal as none are legally permitted outside of the ghettos or zoos.

Autumn Harvest Festival: Celebrated on October 31, a holiday used by the Church to replace Halloween or Samhain. Often held all-night in churches, marked by lots of food, fun and horror houses, dancing, and the like. Encouraged by churches as a safe event, used by singles to meet potential spouses.Samhain is still celebrated secretly by First Folk.

Black buses: The same size as real-world Greyhounds, these buses are painted completely in black. They first appeared in the 1990s and were used to terrorize the civilian population. When a black bus appeared, people disappeared, without warning, and were never heard from again.

Church of the Rationalist Christ, Scientist:

Founded in the 1880s, the Church teaches that First Folks are not normal and are less than human. The religious Rationalist movement began in the 1850’s and 60’s, which grew out of the Puritan Revivals of the 1840s and 50s. Most mainline Protestant churches merge into Rationalist super-church by 1900.With Its political wing, the Rational Reform Movement, it dominates political and religious life in the Empire. Church teachings exacerbated the tensions between humans and First Folk. These teachings and the Church’s political activities are directly responsible for the Glorious Revolution of 1918, open persecution of the First Folk. The slang terms, para and sub come into use, from paranormal and subhuman, come from these teachings, and the 1938 Great Purge (restrictive laws in place, regulating religious, ethnic, and racial minorities, Talking Beasts disappear). After the First Great Crusade (1914-18, real-world World War I), First Folk were restricted to ghettoes.

CLA: Columbian Library Association): real-world equivalent, ALA (American Library Association).

IBI: Imperial Bureau of Investigation, operates as a secret police,used to terrorize the civilian population as well as to solve imperial crimes.