Genre: Young adult, LGBTQ romance
Seventeen-year-old Connor works his butt off to maintain the golden-boy persona he’s created. He has the grades, the extracurriculars, the athletics, and a part-time job at his dad’s shop… every detail specifically chosen to ensure the college scholarships he needs to get the hell out of the Podunk town where he lives. The last thing he needs is an unexpected attraction to Graham, an eyeliner-wearing soccer phenom from St. Louis, who makes him question his goals and his sexuality. Sure, he’s noticed good-looking boys before—that doesn’t have to mean anything, right?—but he’s got a girlfriend. There’s no room on the agenda for hooking up with Graham, but the heart doesn’t always follow the rules.
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.
Gently romantic, with a touch of realistic drama, this was a heart-warming yet thought-provoking read.
Golden-boy Connor is struggling with his relationship with his father, feeling the pressure of having to get a sport scholarship for college. When he lays eyes on new-boy Graham, the eyeliner-wearing goalie of the boy’s football team, his attraction is instant. And as he and Graham spend more time together, he finds himself questioning his goals and his relationship with his girlfriend…
The writing was energetic, flowing beautifully and peppered with witty dialogue, while the plot was multi-layered, encompassing themes of sexuality, academic pressure, and relationships with those closest to you. While the ending was a little too dramatic for my taste, the rest of the novel was drenched in sombre realism. A page-turner of a young adult romance.
*Thank you to the publisher for the free copy of the book.