The blurb reads,
“New to Los Angeles, Ethan is slowly finding his place in a Performing Arts school. While he’s surrounded by a solid group of friends he’s still finding it slightly difficult to adjust. His word is turned upside down when he’s attacked one night in a hate crime. It’s up to only Ethan to stop himself from spiraling out of control as he battles his inner demons.”
So this book deals with a very complicated issue. Handling trauma, especially for LGBTQ persons. And I felt the book was engrossing.
When I initially read the book, I wasn’t too much a fan of the writing because I could see it needed some more work and could do with some beta reading/developmental editing.
But when I let that go and looked at the core of what the book offered, I found a few gems.
At the outset though:
The book lacks structure. There are no chapters and the general writing style is casual and a tad chaotic. It needs attention to detail and there are a few inconsistencies with the way characters have been drafted. Sometimes it seems too much is thrown in into the story.
Now to what I gleaned from the story:
Ethan finds himself a victim of a hate crime, (spoiler = rape) and then has to deal with the consequences. Most accounts I’d read or think about would be girls. I’m a girl myself and there is focus (rightly so) on rapes that are perpetrated on girls. However, the world hides rapes that also happen to men, and especially to lesbian or gay people. They are humans at the base of it. Why should their sexual orientation be so much of a problem to other people? It is something I have never understood. I can understand feeling puzzled by it, but then, it SIMPLY SHOULD NOT BOTHER YOU.
Ethan is a headstrong male and dealing with feelings is tough. And I felt really sad when I read this. Our society has really typecast males into being pseudo dominant and tough. It is considered really feminine to express one’s emotions or to cry. There is a taboo against taking psychological help for problems. Somehow along the way, men have considered taking help for their feelings as something being linked to their virility, which is completely wrong.
Taking control of your feelings doesn’t affect your sexuality and it never will. Taking that one step to sort out your mind is never a bad idea. Somehow, this notion of keeping up appearances needs to stop. It is an important lesson for all of us.
Ethan’s problems with dealing with the trauma are what make up the core of this book. And it was so sad to see Ethan’s spin out of control. But it was heartening to see him take that step to control his life.
Some parts of the book made me sad. These moments are when the people in your life need to support you to the core. And when that support doesn’t exactly come, it can send the person back into the dark abyss he is trying to escape from.
I loved the end.
This is a great book. If only it was a little better structured or edited properly, I’d have given it probably 4-4.5 stars. It doesn’t knock off too many stars though.
My Rating: 3.5/5