Author: K. Z. Snow
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (October 14, 2011)
Genre: M/M Contemporary
Length: 498 KB (Novel)
Heat Rating: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥5Hearts
From the Publisher: Eighteen-year-old Jess Bonner is casting off pretense—and, with it, some friends from his past who aren’t particularly trustworthy. In just a few months he’ll be starting college, and it’s time for him to admit the truth: he’s gay, not bi, and only one of his old friends holds any kind of real interest for him. When Dylan Finch, aka Mig, follows his lead and puts some distance between himself and the old crowd, he and Jess give in to a mutual attraction that’s been building for years.
But navigating a fledgling relationship isn’t easy for beginners, and forces they can’t seem to control keep tripping them up: sexual appetite, personal insecurities, fear of discovery, and more. They need clarity. They need courage. Just as they’re on the verge of finding both, a vindictive act of jealousy sends one of them to jail. All their hard-won victories are in danger of falling to dust. And the only way to save what they have is to recognize it for what it is… and fight for its integrity.
About the Author (from the Publisher) If there’s one thing K. Z. Snow loves more than indulging her wayward imagination, it’s the natural world and, especially, animals. She’s been a companion to most domesticated creatures and a good number of the feral ones commonly known as men. After too many turbulent years, her life in the upper Midwest is finally boring as hell—an achievement as well as a blessing.
She’s overeducated, underskilled, and has written a lot of stuff. Her only awards are two medals she received, obviously out of sympathy, for playing the bassoon and making it sound like a malfunctioning chainsaw.
My Review: This book is the perfect blend of drama and self discovery and it snagged my attention right from the beginning. Jesse and his small group of friends have been playing at being bisexual for a while now…the whole purpose of their ‘club’ The Zero Knot revolves around their sexual choices. At 18 and newly out of high school, however, Jesse is ready to admit he is gay, not bi. He is also ready to start making hard choices when it comes to who he really wants to call ‘friend’. Jesse has always viewed Dylan Finch (Mig) as one of his best friends and he is ready to admit to himself that he cares about him quite deeply. Turns out, Dylan has been hiding the very same secret!
As with any teenage romance (gay or straight!) there is quite a bit of angst to deal with. Jesse and Dylan don’t know the first thing about being in a relationship. I found it touching to see them struggle through learning how to express their emotions without feeling stupid and ‘girly’. And, of course, along with this relationship comes jealousy…between themselves and from outside influences. Bran (one of their club members) does everything in his power to keep the two of them apart, preferring that he, himself, remain the center of attention. And he takes his mission to the extreme.
The author does a great job at writing this book to the YA market…the language, situations, and even the sexual explorations are appropriate for characters that are 18 and not 38. Any teenager coming of age and struggling with being gay would benefit from reading this book.
I loved the secondary characters, as well. Jesse’s father and brother are truly unique and really add a nice touch of humor and realism to the scenes. In the end, Jesse and Dylan realize that the chance of their relationship lasting forever is slim (they are only 18 after all) but are willing to put all their effort into making it the best relationship they can.
Overall, a wonderful book with touching characters, a nice plot, and just the right amount of drama!