Monday, December 05, 2016

Review: You Are Not Me (90’s Coming of Age #2) by Leta Blake

you are not meTitle ~ You Are Not Me (90’s Coming of Age #2)

Author ~ Leta Blake

Publisher ~ Leta Blake Books

Published ~ 28th November 2016

Genre ~ New Adult, M/M, Coming of Age

Rating

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Synopsis

Follow Peter into the summer following his senior year to face new beginnings, new friends, and old baggage.

After a tumultuous final year of high school, Peter Mandel needs a break. It's the summer of 1991, and his secret relationship with his ‘best friend’ Adam Algedi is put on hold as Adam goes away to Italy for the summer. On the cusp of adulthood, Peter has a couple of months to explore who he is without Adam at his side.

Enter Daniel McPeak, a slightly older, out, responsible college guy with a posse of gay friends and an attraction for Peter. Drawn into the brave new world of the local gay club, Peter embarks on a whirlwind of experiences—good and bad—which culminate in a hotel room where he has to make the ultimate choice.

But Adam will come back eventually, and there are promises that have to be kept. As autumn draws near and college awaits, can Peter break free of the binds of twisted first love? And what exactly is Daniel's role in his life - a brief temptation, or something more?

Join Peter in the second book of this four-part coming of age series as he struggles to love and be loved, and grow into a gay man worthy of his own respect.

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This new series by Leta Blake is gay fiction with romantic elements. Book 2 of 4.

These books contain aspects of: New Adult fiction, ‘90s gay life, small city homosexual experiences, Southern biases, sexual exploration, romance, homophobia, bisexuality, and twisted-up young love. Oh, and a guaranteed happy ending for the main character by the end of Book 4.

 

Jane’s Review

This is book 2 in the series and follows on directly from the first one. We pick it up at the start of the summer when Peter’s somewhat boyfriend Adam has gone to Rome to spend the summer with his family. Peter spends a lot more time with his friend and employer Robert and his partner Barry. They persuade Peter to try to make other gay friends and to have some life that is not just waiting around for Adam. He is still intrigued by Daniel, whom we met in book 1 and they end up spending a lot of time together as Peter becomes part of Daniel’s friendship group. I loved the dynamic of the group and that they were very welcoming and accepting of Peter and also very protective, especially after a drug related incidence occurs.

During the whole of the first book, I wanted Peter and Adam together, and was very sceptical of his burgeoning infatuation with Daniel and really wanted that to fizzle out and for Adam to choose Peter and for first love to conquer all. This book turned that all on its head. I hated that Peter was waiting around to see if Adam would make good on his promise of them being together when he got back. I wanted Peter to take a chance with Daniel and to tell Adam to stick it. Adam keeps him dangling and Peter is so conflicted during a lot of this book, torn between following his promise to wait for Adam and his intense attraction to Daniel. Something does eventually happen with Peter and Daniel which is lovely and intimate but ultimately leaves both of them with a huge amount of guilt and awkwardness. You compare that to what happens with Adam when he returns. Their reunion is purely sexual and emotionally distant with no intimacy like Peter shared with Daniel. I think at this point Peter is realising that things with Adam may not be the same. We do see Peter’s final realisation that Adam is a selfish dick, same old, same old, wanting his cake and eating it and I for one was really glad when that happened.

As this book takes place in 1991, we still have all of the touchstones for that time, we see that Daniel volunteers for an AIDS Response team and we’re introduced to the man he visits Bobby and the issues he is dealing with. That brought everything into sharp focus and took me back to that time. It was a very enlightening arc to the story. This book deals very well with the issue of condoms and safe sex and the need for education. We also see that Peter is still living his life through the lens and his photography remains a big part of who he is. The relationship with his parents continues to improve dramatically and that has a freeing effect on Peter. He has another means of support, especially when things go a bit pear shaped with Daniel and his friends.

By the end of this book, the author had managed to entirely change the couple I was rooting for and this is no easy feat for me as usually I’m all in with my ship and it never deviates. The author leaves us with somewhat of a cliff hanger ending. I was screaming at the book not to end there, I desperately need to know what happens next. This book is slightly less angsty than the first and has some very touching scenes and heart warming moments and it sets it all up nicely for book 3 which I cannot wait to read. Highly recommended.

Purchase Links

AMAZON GLOBAL LINK

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Pictures of You

Pictures of You (Book 1)

Amazon --> http://bit.ly/2dk8vFi

Review -->  http://bit.ly/2fO33e1

Growing up gay isn’t easy. Growing up gay in Knoxville, Tennessee is even harder.
Eighteen-year-old Peter Mandel, a private school senior—class of 1991—is passionate about photography. Peter doesn’t have many friends, preferring to shoot pictures from behind the scenes to keep his homosexuality secret.
Enter Adam Algedi, a charming, worldly new guy who doesn't do labels, but does want to do Peter. Hardly able to believe gorgeous Adam would want geeky, skinny him of all people, Peter's swept away on a journey of first love and sexual discovery. But as their mutual web of lies spins tighter and tighter, can Peter find the confidence he needs to make the right choices? And will his crush on Daniel, a college acquaintance, open a new path?
Join Peter in the first book of this four-part coming of age series as he struggles to love and be loved, and grow into a gay man worthy of his own respect.

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Meet Leta Blake

Author of the bestselling book Smoky Mountain Dreams and the fan favorite Training Season, Leta Blake's educational and professional background is in psychology and finance, respectively. However, her passion has always been for writing. She enjoys crafting romance stories and exploring the psyches of made up people. At home in the Southern U.S., Leta works hard at achieving balance between her day job, her writing, and her family. You can find out more about her by following her online:

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | TUMBLR | GOODREADS

AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

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