Dana reviews Superhero by Eli Easton (Published by Harmony Ink Press, July 24, 2014, 136 pages. Released on audiobook May 28, 2014, 2 hrs 57 mins. Narrated by Tristan Wright)
Why I read this: This week at RGR we are reviewing books that fit the category of Friends to Lovers or Enemies to Lovers. Superhero is one of my favorite stories so I chose to re-listen to it and review it.
It’s not easy for a young gay artist like Jordan Carson to grow up in Jefferson, Wisconsin, where all anyone seems to care about in middle school and high school are the sports teams. But Jordan was lucky. He met Owen Nelson in the second grade, and they’ve been BFFs ever since. Owen is a big, beautiful blond and their school’s champion wrestler. No one messes with Owen, or with anyone close to him, and he bucks popular opinion by keeping Jordan as his wingman even after Jordan comes out at school.
Their friendship survives, but Jordan’s worst enemy may be himself: he can’t seem to help the fact that he is head-over-heels in love with a hopeless case – his straight friend, Owen. Owen won’t let anything take Jordan’s friendship away, but he never counted on Jordan running off to find a life of his own. Owen will have to face the nature of their relationship if he’s to win Jordan back.
The narration: I’ve listened to Tristan Wright before and I thought he voiced Jordan and Owen very well. He has a pleasant voice and its free from rasp so it is very suitable for these high school age characters. There were a few repeated lines that were missed in editing somehow but honestly, I love the story so much and liked the narration enough that it made no difference in my enjoyment of the audio.
The story: For the most part, Superhero is a very sweet coming of age story. Jordan and Owen meet in grade school and form a strong friendship that lasts years, weathering any ups and downs. Owen is probably one of my favorite characters ever written. He’s kind of on the perfect side. Athletic, smart, empathetic. When the school starts an anti-bullying group he’s the first athlete to sign up, and when his friend Jordan comes out at school, he doesn’t let anyone tell him he can’t be friends with the boy he’d shared everything with. His ability to look past differences and see people for who they are inside is extremely mature for his age, maybe for any age.
Jordan is more of a typical teenager. It’s not that he is cruel or a bully. He cares about others, but he is wrapped up in his own struggles. He is perfectly happy being a gay teen, but sharing it at school is unnerving. He treasures his friendship with Owen, but his feelings for his friend are deeper than he thinks can be returned. The two boys go to school together, share sleepovers, and work on a comic book together. He and Owen plan on attending the same college to continue their closeness, but for the first time Jordan is reconsidering the path he and Owen are on. So is Owen.
There is a tiny bit of angst, as teenagers are subject to heavy emotions, but it is remedied quickly. Jordan and Owen are teenage boys so there is a little bit of sexual exploration, but nothing too explicit. The journey these two friends make together really warmed my heart. Their ability to be true to themselves no matter the pressures put on them by their parents and classmates is inspiring. I have read and listened to this book and probably will many more times. I recommend this book, especially if you are looking for something innocent and smile inducing.
9/10 Pots of Gold (90% Recommended) – Compares to 4.5/5 Stars
As an addicted reader of such, she is tinkled pink when an author manages to combine literary merit, vast stores of humor, melting hotness and eye-dabbing sweetness into one story. She promises to strive to achieve most of that most of the time. She currently lives on a farm in Pennsylvania with her husband, three bulldogs, three cows and six chickens. All of them (except for the husband) are female, hence explaining the naked men that have taken up residence in her latest fiction writing.
Her website in www.elieaston.com
You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org