Dana reviews Omorphi by C. Kennedy (Published by Harmony Ink Press, September 19, 2013, 667 pages)
Why I read this book: After reading Safe, I was eager to read more from this author and received a copy in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: With a foreword by Jamie Mayfield.
High school senior Michael Sattler leads a charmed life. He’s a star athlete, has great friends, and parents who love him just the way he is. What’s missing from his life is a boyfriend. That’s a problem because he’s out only to his parents and best friend. When Michael accidentally bumps into Christy Castle at school, his life changes in ways he never imagined. Christy is Michael’s dream guy: smart, pretty, and sexy. But nothing could have prepared Michael for what being Christy’s boyfriend would entail.
Christy needs to heal after years of abuse and knows he needs help to do it. After the death of his notorious father, he leaves his native Greece and settles in upstate New York. Alone, afraid, and left without a voice, Christy hides the myriad scars of his abuse. He desperately wants to be loved and when he meets Michael, he dares to hope that day has arrived. When one of Michael’s teammates turns enemy, and an abuser from Christy’s past seeks to return him to a life of slavery, only Michael and Christy’s combined strength and unwavering determination can save them from the violence that threatens to destroy their future together.
Buy Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | All Romance ebooks
My thoughts: After reading Safe by C. Kennedy I was interested in reading Omorphi. I expected it to be similar in length and subject matter, knowing the author writes about young LGBT adults coming to terms with sexuality, and physical and sexual abuse. I was surprised when I opened it to find it was almost ten times as long as Safe and ten times as many problems our main characters have to face.
With a book this lengthy, it follows that there is a lot of content. After reading the book, I needed to pause before writing the review in order to form coherent thoughts because so much happened and I was left with so many feelings. There was a sweet love story going on between Christy and Michael that warmed my heart. I loved seeing the characters grow throughout the book, but the violence that occurred for Christy in the past made me feel ill, as it probably should. The hatred spewed at the two boys from several different directions made me feel their hurt.
One of the things I like the most about the author’s writing, was that it wasn’t simply black and white. There were many sides to each character. For Michael, though he displayed leadership and strength, when falling for Christy he was willing to take his time making the abused teen feel more comfortable. He was virginal and full of desire at the same time and let Christy lead the physical aspect of their relationship. For all of the horrors the younger man had faced, for all the use and abuse his small body had taken, he wasn’t completely jaded to the possibility of good people in the world. He makes a comparison between himself and Ivan the Terrible, wondering why he hadn’t become a monster. Christy displayed an inner strength and will to live. He was eager to learn and trust, and he showed an innocence in matters of the heart.
I also got a good picture of the supporting characters. They were well developed and also showed different facets of their personalities from the friends to the enemies. C. Kennedy wrote about feelings between male friends that bordered on romantic though the characters weren’t necessarily gay, and boys who like feeling pretty, though not necessarily transgender. The characters were also not always shown in the best light as well, I was given a look at their strengths and their weaknesses. I felt like a wide spectrum of sexuality, love, and family was represented in this book.
There was a lot of action in the book as well, thanks to the homophobes/haters of the story and a someone from Christy’s past. I must admit, sometimes I feel like I live in a bubble because I haven’t ever experienced the real hate or discrimination someone LGBT has faced. I haven’t even witnessed it because I know no one outside of facebook that is lesbian, gay, bi or transgender. Either I’m living in that bubble I mentioned or they haven’t come out. Still between Yosef, one of Christy’s past tormenters, Jason the unstable teammate and his friends, Duncan the trouble maker and his friends, and even the cook who tried to throw Christy and Michael out of the hospital cafeteria for showing affection to each other, I started to feel like it was overkill. How many bad guys could there be in a story?
I have to admit again that I am naive, possibly ignorant to the trials an LGBT youth faces. I was feeling disbelief and frustration at how many obstacles they faced, how many times one of those “bad guys” attacked the main characters or the other gay and lesbian characters in the story, but I admit it is possibly a perspective thing. If this is really what the average LGBT person faces, I have to be horrified and saddened that there are so many non accepting people out there, and that so many are willing to harass or do violence to innocent people because of who they love or how they identify their gender.
For all that rambling, I loved Omorphi. I loved feeling all those different feelings it created in me. It sounds strange to say I loved that it opened my eyes to the trials the characters faced in the book and to the abuses in the book and in real life, but without knowledge I can’t change my naivety or learn to recognize someone who might be being abused or harassed and stand up for them. This book was well written and had wonderful characters. I would definitely recommend it.
9/10 pots of gold
About the author: Raised on the mean streets and back lots of Hollywood by a Yoda-look-alike grandfather, Cody doesn’t conform, doesn’t fit in, is epic awkward, and lives to perfect a deep-seated oppositional defiance disorder. In a constant state of fascination with the trivial, Cody contemplates such weighty questions as If time and space are curved, then where do all the straight people come from? When not writing, Cody can be found taming waves on western shores, pondering the nutritional value of sunsets, appreciating the much maligned dandelion, unhooking guide ropes from stanchions, and marveling at all things ordinary.
You can contact Cody here. You can also like Cody on Facebook, and find Cody on Goodreads, and Twitter @CodyKAuthor. Cody does respond to blog comments and emails because, after all, it is all about you, the reader.
Safe Facebook page
Omorphi Facebook page
One thought on “Omorphi by @CodyKAuthor #LGBT #Review”
Thank you for the wonderful review, Dana!