As he and Graham grow close, other aspects of Connor’s life fall apart. Family pressure, bad luck, and rumors threaten to derail his carefully laid plans. Suddenly the future he’s fighting for doesn’t seem quite as alluring, especially if he has to deny who he really is to achieve it.
When a new guy moves to the small town of Green Vale, Conner—star of the baseball team—has a weird reaction. . .something which feels far too close to attraction for his liking.
Conner is the “golden boy” do-gooder who strives to meet everybody’s expectations of him—particularly his fathers. This creates conflict with the sudden questions Conner has about his sexuality, and the fear of what others in the tiny town will think. You will be wholeheartedly invested in Conner’s inner battle as his unhappiness and angst forces him to confront aspects of himself he would rather leave buried.
Graham Parker wears eyeliner, is a star Soccer player, and has a painful and traumatizing past. Throughout the book, the reader wonders what his dark past involves, and whether he will find his own salvation. This character is multi-faceted, witty, strong, and the reader cannot help feeling respect for the way he carries himself.
Set in a small American town. A lot of research (or personal experience) has gone into depicting the various sports in the novel. Visualizing the setting is effortless.
J. Leigh Bailey is a seasoned Author. This much is clear from how comfortable you will feel from the first chapter. The pace is steady, only dropping to a super brief crawl in the middle of the book, and the dialogue is great. The themes are so full of emotion—the final scenes are certain to draw a few tears!
For the most part, I found this book impossible to put down.
The Final Verdict:
Authentic. Insightful (for a straight reader). Heartfelt.
A LGBT novel perfect for young adults aged fourteen and older. Some violence and language.
“The guy who walked out of the back room put his imagination to shame.”