Thursday, May 31, 2012

Raise Your Glass (Tales of Foster High #3) by John Goode

I loved this third installment of the Foster High Series for three reasons:

1. This one felt even more strongly like those stories I loved in my own youth. These stories always feel so familiar, but this one resonated the loudest to me. Kyle and Brad's voice were pure John Hughes like goodness. Teens who are a little too wise, and a little too jaded...But also sooo vulnerable, and so willing be strong even when they are scared to death. I love these boys voices, they are so open, so candid. They just sound so REAL.

2. This was a story that spoke loudly and strongly about the horrific reality of bullying in high schools, not just from the "cool" kids or the "jocks" but even from those that face their own difficulties...Even worse by the educators, those who should be fighting for these kids. There were very tough truths woven into this story. We the grown ups fail these kids EVERY DAY...The teachers in the school who turn a blind eye, because high school toughens kids up...Or us the parents who don't do nearly enough or hold each other accountable to make sure that all these kids are safe. I've been listening to this song (a favorite) all week partly I think, because last of week's news on that mess with Ravi, but today I'm listening to it for all the boys like Kyle and Brad.

3. Last but not least, I am in love with the Falling In Love these two are doing. I just love them, and it has been a steady thing. Such strength these boys have.

So the story. We catch up with Brad and Kyle the morning of their first day of school after they both came out. They are TERRIFIED, for themseveles for each other. The story alternates by showing us both each boys POV in the first person. Their voices are so different their personalities so distinct, but there is such harmony is the certainty they have of what they feel for each other. It's so lovely because only the young can love like that, that feeling that you can take on the world because that love you have will give you the strength. It was so nicely written too. I've said this before John Goode has a knack for writing teenage boys. I really love how he writes.

So there they are, coming face to face with he scorn of their classmates, friends, even the teachers. Everything is slowly unraveling. Brad realizes he might loose a lot more than he was prepared to loose...Kyle feels guilty that Brad is giving up so much for him...It's them against the world. That's what it feels like anyways. They keep taking turns being each other's hero, and it fucking awesome. They need a hero for both of them though, and they get them. In the end they realize that they do have people that will stand up for them and love them and that they will be okay.

Loved it, loved it, loved it. Can't wait for the next. I just want them to have an EPIC happy ending. I know John Goode will deliver for me...He's a John Hughes fan after all.


Raise Your Glass is for sale at the Dreamspinner Website 

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