Sunday, November 15, 2015

Audiobook Review: Sending Jack Off to Jesus (A Southern Thing #2) by Sara York ~ Includes Audio Excerpt

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Title: Sending Jack Off to Jesus

Author: Sara York

Narrator: Jason Frazier

Length: 5 hrs + 14 mins

Publisher: Sara York

Release: 15th August 2014

Genre: M/M (contemporary)

Synopsis

Jack Miller has more than he could ask for with Andrew as his boyfriend, but it's being taken away from him and there isn't anything he can do. His father knows he's gay, and his mother wants him to have sex with a girl to make sure he's not mistaken. Andrew Collins has found the perfect home in foster care with Cole and Melinda Kemp, but it won't last. The DA thinks his parents have proven they've changed, but Andrew doesn't believe the change will last. Just when Jack and Andrew think it can't get any worse, it does.

Jack's father sends him to New Life Christian Camp, a program that promises to pray the gay away. But Andrew has it worse, as his father takes out his anger on him, leaving him near death. Both Jack and Andrew are lost to each other, their lives in tatters all because their parents wanted to pray the gay away.

STORY

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NARRATION

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Mark’s Review

OMG!!!! I mean...I mean… like... WOW …erm… WTF!...erm…HOLY CRAP…OMG!!!!

As I said in my review of the first book, Pray The Gay Away, if religion and homosexualtily is an explosive combination then the first book is only the incendiary device which detonates with an almighty bang in the second book!!! I have just been put through an emotional hell and back! I have run a gamut of indescribable feelings. Sara York packs a punch with this second book and does not shy away from the horrors of being gay in a strictly religious environment.

Despite all Jack’s and Andrew’s attempts at pretending to be normal outwardly, which is a word I hate in the first place as being gay is not abnormal unless your attitudes don’t allow you to think any differently, things just seem to go from bad to worse for the boys. This book was just beautiful but heart-breaking. I broke down in tears as Andrew had to leave his foster parents and go back to his biological parents. These people were so good to and for Andrew he first came to feel how loving adults can make a difference to n your life.

The situation begins to heat up with Jack too, culminating in his father, Nathaniel, sending him off to one of these reparative therapy camps to make you “ungay.” What a living hell hole!!! I just can’t believe that such places exist (I know they do in the US) and Jack lets himself be put in such a situation on order to protect Billy. This boy has more guts than any man I know. When I heard about what went on there, it was like listening to a medieval torture camp at its worst. It makes Guantanamo Bay sound like a 4 star holiday camp!! I can’t even believe these places are allowed to legally exist! OK, maybe for the sake of a good story and drama Jack’s experience might belong to the more extreme camps! But seriously?? Everyone should know that being gay is not a choice, it’s not an illness and it is most definitely not a mortal sin by any man’s standards. I wept and cried a river for both boys!

At least before they were separated they stole one fantastic, romantic and beautiful night together, both flying in the face of imminent danger if caught. I felt so sad for them, knowing they were about to be separated and hanging on to the forevers that they have promised each other. The one thing that keeps them strong for each other. Out of most desolate circumstances the strongest bonds of love can be forged. A greater love hath no man. This is Jack and Andrew. They were made to be together.

Well, unfortunately Andrew did get caught by his parents when he got back sneaking into the house. What his parents did to him was beyond words! You’ll have to listen to or read the book as I’m not going into that here.

Despite all these horrible things going on there are moments of light, first a small spark, then a flame which matures into a raging inferno. Her name is Diane! Oh my, never underestimate the love of a mother for her children. I know this is not always the case and it wasn’t in Andrew’s, but Jack’s mother, Diane, sees through the religious bullshit with the help and support of friends and her love for Jack leads her to having to make some very tough decisions. I said in my first review that I assessed her as a formidable woman. Well now she has my greatest respect. I take my hat off to her. A real lioness protecting her cubs at all costs which means dumping her husband, fleeing with the children and going to rescue Jack. When she does I was left inconsolable, crying buckets about the strength this woman displayed. The scene when she finds Jack just had me weeping.

However, the lies from Nathaniel still don’t stop and this leads Andrew on to a path of despair and destruction.  The man is pure evil even though he calls himself a Pastor??? And he justifies his actions all in the name of religious freedom and everything being a sin in the eyes of God. Now I know why the church and the state are separated because when it comes to religious fanaticism then there will never be any compassion, understanding, peace, love and equality. Only the love that is deemed to conform. We would never have evolved out of the mediaeval age in Europe. I’m not saying that all religion is like this, of course not, I respect anyone one who has a belief. But in its most extreme and bigoted form it is a dangerous thing!

Sara York doesn’t shy away from anything in this book. The hypocrisy of religious fanaticism, the double standards of liars who profess to doing everything in the name of God’s Will. Yes, this whole explosive cocktail that just went up with an almighty boom in the speakers of my car was handled masterfully with no watering down of the hard core facts. A book that punched me in the gut and made me realise there is still so much work to do until these attitudes are completely eradicated, peacefully of course. I have never bought the next book in a series in Audible so fast in my life. There had better be a happy ending to all of this. So make sure you check out my review of the third and final book in Jack and Andrew’s story.

Narration

So with everything going on this would not have been half the emotional listening experience it was without the voice of Jason Frasier. Despite everything I said in my first review I felt his narration of this second book goes into overdrive. It seems to pick up, keeps the listener riveted to the story. After the book was finished I never pressed the icon on my iPhone to buy the next book as fast in my life as I did for this one.

Everything is cranked up a notch. The emotion, the anger, the loving, the longing expressed in the words are given life and lifted off the page. Jack and Andrew’s love making, beautifully narrated. All the stages of Diane’s moods until she breaks down and then stands up and fights were exquisitely voiced. And Billy, oh dear, brave little Billy, absolutely wonderful narration.

 

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Audio Excerpt

 

 

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Meet Sara York

Writing is Sara’s life. The stories fight to get out, often leaving her working on four or five books at once. She can’t help but write. Along with her writing addiction she has a coffee addiction. Some nights, the only reason she stops writing and goes to sleep is for the fresh brewed coffee in the morning.

Connect with Sara

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOODREADS | INSTAGRAM

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Purchase Links Audiobook

AMAZON | AUDIBLE US | AUDIBLE UK | AUDIBLE AU | AUDIBLE DE | AUDIBLE FR

Ebook Purchase Links

AMAZON | B&N

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