Author: Jay Bell
Publisher: Self Published
Cover Artist: Andreas Bell
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Never stop running. No matter how often life trips you up, or how many times your enemies knock you down, just get up and keep on moving until you find where you belong.
Kelly Phillips has been out of the closet since he was a young teenager, and thanks to the gay youth group he frequents, he has never been short on friends or lovers. But when you have almost everything, it’s hard not to focus on what’s just out of reach: A best friend, who would be Mr. Right if he wasn’t already Mr. Straight. Or that handsome guy at school, who would be easier to wrangle if not for his angel wings. And then there’s the one who might be a perfect fit, maybe even a soulmate… if only he wasn’t convinced he didn’t need anyone at all. Kelly has always been good at running. Now he must learn to chase, which will not only test his endurance, but the durability of his heart as well.
Something Like Lighting is a new beginning in the Something Like… saga, shifting the focus to a fresh set of characters while also revisiting a familiar face or two.
Remember, I don’t give five stars. I really enjoyed and admired this book.
Kelly Phillips has it all; parents who accept that he’s gay, a best friend who believes in him, and the fastest legs in school.
But life doesn’t really work out that way, does it?
Jay Bell’s fascinating new book—the first of a series with storm themes—takes the narrative of the young adult novel and spins it into something subtly epic. There is heartbreak, there is disaster, there is joy; but it’s not that simple. Bell weaves a vivid tapestry, sticking to the authentic teenage voice of his central cast, while embracing a wide range of characters, none of whom fit any sort of stereotype. Kelly finds himself having to overcome plenty of hurdles along the way, and even at the end of this long tale, there is no guarantee of happiness. But at the end Kelly is not the boy he was when the book started, and, as it happens, we have begun to believe in him.
One of the more interesting aspects of this book is that, for all his good qualities, I never really liked Kelly. Funny thing, not liking the protagonist of a novel. I can’t tell if Jay Bell is intentionally creating a character that you root for in spite of how you feel about him—or if Bell really admires things about the rather selfish, narcissistic Kelly that I simply find repellant. I suspect the former. This is too clever and too carefully written. Kelly’s portrait is prepared in such precise detail for it to be accidental. Moreover, we’re given characters, like William, who are very easy to like, and life is no easier for them.
Although most of the action of the novel takes place over only two or so years, we see all of the characters—including Kelly’s best gay friend Bonnie and his parents—shift and change and grow as his own character does.
In Kelly’s life, as in actual life, shit happens; then you deal with it (or, maybe, not). Then more shit happens. And so on. I like that Bell doesn’t give us easy outs; doesn’t make people simple and readily understandable; doesn’t automatically make us like people because we feel their pain. Bell forces us to look closely at his characters, and then to decide for ourselves what we think about them.
We never, however, doubt Bell’s belief in the people he writes. And that makes me want to read the sequel; because, like him or not, Kelly is someone I want to know better.
I would like to thank the author for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
|This post may contain affiliate links.
|Prism Book Alliance® assumes no liability for the ownership of photos or content used in guest posts and interviews. The post author assumes all responsibility and liability for this content.|