Posted July 17, 2017 by Books & Alochol Girls in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

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Seth King
February 26,2016

A radiant and award-winning tale of first love and self-acceptance for fans of John Green, Jandy Nelson, and Rainbow Rowell 

“Maybe we weren’t meant to collide. Maybe we were meant to explode.”

As a closeted teenager in the Deep South with a holy-roller father and the scars to prove it, bookworm Cole Furman has resigned himself to experiencing life and love only within the pages of his favorite novels. But after Nick Flores seems to walk off a page and starts to rewrite his story, Cole finds his dreams spinning into a dazzling – and complicated – reality.

If you have ever found yourself on the wild breathless thriller ride that is first love, Honesty will rip you back again in screaming color.

I’m not really sure where to begin with this review of Honesty. I enjoyed the story and the points it made overall. It was a little difficult to read a story that was one point of view and didn’t really have a lot of events occurring. So many books these days are chock full of happenings and multiple points of view, that it took a minute to adjust. As I neared the end of the story I began to realize that this book was meant to be more than just a “gay” romance.

Seth King told a beautiful yet heartbreaking tale of two young boys on the cusp of adulthood trying to figure out who they were and what their place in this world was. I can’t imagine having to grow up like Cole and Nick knowing that your family and everyone else you encountered would hate you simply for being who you are. Knowing that any little thing you said or did could leave you shunned from your family and community. Cole and Nick were both closeted teens just trying to find their way to love and happiness. It is very hard to love and be happy when you hate yourself.  

Honesty weaves the tale of Cole and Nick’s love affair over the span of a few months. The story is all from Cole’s point of view. Cole was slightly more comfortable with who he was but still hiding. Despite the fact that Nick would only love Cole in private and from afar the boys fell in love. The description of how Nicky made Cole’s world brighter and everything was more vibrant and real are so true of your first love. First loves are extra special and some people are lucky enough to be able to spend the rest of their lives with that person. During a trip to Nick’s hometown of Savannah the boys are able to truly admit to themselves and each other how much they love each other. They are able to express their love without feeling the loathing and guilt of having those feelings for a person of the same sex.

Though this trip would appear to be the beginning of a real and fulfilling relationship for them, it is not. Sadly it is the end. After Nick’s sister meets the two of them at a restaurant and fully realizes what their relationship is. Victoria meets with Nick at her apartment afterwards and basically threatens to tell his parents, who are deeply religious, everything. Nick is forced to breakup with Cole. As he sees it there is no other choice.

There is no HEA at the end of this tale. It is rather sad actually. I’m not ashamed to say I cried a few tears over this one. There is growth and acceptance of self which could be viewed as a happy ending but for the romantic, it is not what you’re looking for.

Personally this story opened my eyes. I’ve known gay people throughout my life but I never realized what issues they can face. It made me realize that I want my children to know they are loved. They will be loved no matter what. I won’t put them in a box and I will try harder not to place others in boxes either. I look forward to reading more of Seth’s work. I hope others can read this book and take something away from it as I did.

I give 4 stars to Honesty and would pair it with a Cracked Chandelier


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