Author: Marie Sexton
Cover Artist: Jay Aheer
Rating: 4.50 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 03/20/2016
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Gay Fiction, Historical, New Adult
It’s 1986, and what should have been the greatest summer of Nate Bradford’s life goes sour when his parents suddenly divorce. Now, instead of spending his senior year in his hometown of Austin, Texas, he’s living with his father in Warren, Wyoming, population 2,833 (and Nate thinks that might be a generous estimate). There’s no swimming pool, no tennis team, no mall—not even any MTV. The entire school’s smaller than his graduating class back home, and in a town where the top teen pastimes are sex and drugs, Nate just doesn’t fit in.
Then Nate meets Cody Lawrence. Cody’s dirt-poor, from a broken family, and definitely lives on the wrong side of the tracks. Nate’s dad says Cody’s bad news. The other kids say he’s trash. But Nate knows Cody’s a good kid who’s been dealt a lousy hand. In fact, he’s beginning to think his feelings for Cody go beyond friendship.
Admitting he might be gay is hard enough, but between small-town prejudices and the growing AIDS epidemic dominating the headlines, a town like Warren, Wyoming, is no place for two young men to fall in love.
This was my first Marie Sexton title. Is the rest of her catalog this good/thoughtful/painful? If so, my “to read” list just grew exponentially.
Poor Cody. Poor sweet, unlucky, unloved Cody. He’s had a hard life, and he just has no idea how to handle the simple politeness of Nate, the rich new kid in his nowhere town. Nate’s discovery of his own sexual identity is fumbled to perfection while the two of them slowly become friends (despite Cody’s resistance) and – much later – boyfriends (again, no thanks to Cody, LOL). I appreciated the consistent pacing of the writing; there’s a sort of comforting rhythm to it that softens the sting of the otherwise brutal content.
Then, somewhere around Chapter 14, right when I was starting to feel the tiniest glimmer of hope for the boys and by extension their struggling parents, the ish hit the metaphorical fan. I can’t go into further detail without spoiling it, but suffice to say I didn’t see a particular plot turn coming, and then I felt stupid for having thought for even a second that everything would be alright. Newsflash: “alright” is not an option in Warren. Problem is, escape isn’t really an option either, so what’s a young gay couple to do? I recommend picking up Trailer Trash ASAP to find out.
I would like to thank the publisher 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,
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