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Kamikaze Boys Paperback – March 5, 2012
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About the Author
More About the Author
Jay is a Lambda Literary Award winner and a fairly bad dancer. He also thinks that you're really cool. Seriously.
Top Customer Reviews
The storyline is not so heart-wrenching as Something Like Summer, but it certainly encompasses an understanding of love and romance that is unmatched in today's media. I couldn't help but hold my breath at parts, hoping that the two characters would come out okay in the end. I found myself falling in love with the characters and learning that their love should be replicated in the real world. It was refreshing to see that not only was this NOT a coming-out story, nor were the characters in any way ashamed of their sexuality, but that they used it to their advantage and would challenge anyone who stood in their way. Some parts are so cute you'll wish you could've come up with it yourself first! Then, of course there are some steamy parts that depict sex in the beautiful way that it should be. This story is sweet, moving, and just plain great and I fully recommend it to anyone who wants to experience the imaginative, beautiful romance that only Bell can come up with.
You will be inspired by the characters, Connor and David, to fight against all odds and apologize to no one.
Accomplished storyteller that he is, Jay Bell has taken many of the TIME-TESTED clichés of the coming of age/first love gay narrative: dysfunctional parents, middle-class school, self-loathing school bully, smooth-talking psychologist, adoring little brother, sassy big sister, nerdy best friend and - of course - our two heroes, the honor-roll loner David along with Connor, the intimidating older student with that mysterious scar on his face; Jay has taken these elements and totally "un-clichéd" them as he has woven them into a touching and truly realistic high school gay romance which begins early on in the novel when Connor unexpectedly rescues David from the school bully.
(Thankfully, Jay advances this love story WITHOUT any of the more recent and tiresome gay romance clichés about which I have complained in many a review: truncated, totally unrealistic pillow talk - "You! Bed! Now!" - being the most egregious of them).
KAMIKAZE BOYS isn't as deep nor as multi-layered as the author's earlier SOMETHING ABOUT SUMMER. And that's okay; frankly I was glad that I, in order to let my heart rate get back to normal, didn't have to momentarily put the book down quite so many times as I did with his previous novel.
Sure, there were some scary moments toward the end of the book when the two guys were forcibly separated from one another in seemingly cruel ways.Read more ›
The jock and the nerd - a classic set up - but it doesn't play out the way you expect, because whether they get together or not is beside the point. Although the build-up is very nicely done, it's how they fight to stay a couple in the face of a world that either doesn't care or disapproves that drives the story. The fact that they're gay isn't the main point either - with one crucial exception, it's more their youth and supposed inexperience that causes their troubles.
I love YA-ish books where the parents are important players, and Jay Bell delivers here. I love it even more that the parents are allowed to surprise us (and their children).
For a romance, it's surprisingly unsentimental. There's plenty of teen anger in this - and that's just about right.
David and Connor meet in high school, where David is a junior and Connor is a senior. Connor protects David from bully and their story starts from there. Before I go any further, another warning - when they meet David is almost seventeen, but not yet, and Connor is nineteen and yes, they are have sex while David is considered underage. If that bothers you, you should probably stay away from this book. I have no problem whatsoever with reading about teenagers having sex, since I do not see why something that happens so frequently in real life should not be portrayed in fiction, but I understand that other readers may have a problem with it, hence the warning.
Their love story is actually quite beautiful. Both David and Connor are very believable, very flawed but still likeable characters, and I really enjoyed their interactions. I really enjoyed that the writer showed them not having perfect sex initially as I thought it was sweet and believable. I also really liked how David's attitude towards Connor changed slowly and believably, and how he saw the real Connor behind the facade. To put it simply, the writer totally sold me on their love and on the idea that they may have a future. It is not an easy thing to do, considering that the guys are so young, and usually I am thinking "oh, you will find you may think that you found your true love, but who knows what you will say several years in the future" when I am reading about teenagers, but this author managed to convince me that they have real connection. I am especially happy because as much as I enjoyed this writer's books in the past, I did not think that writing romantic storylines is something that he would be good at for some reason.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Fast paced, engaging with unexpected turns. It is the parents who are the most surprising characters. They love their kids, even if they mess up occasionally. A fun read.Published 1 month ago by virun r
Another excellent book by this author. The writing is excellent; the character definition is very goo to excellent; the use of scene changes makes for excellent story flow.Published 1 month ago by John B
I've never given any book written by Jay Bell anything less than 5 stars... I'm not through them all yet (close...) but somehow I know I never will. Read morePublished 2 months ago by JJA333
I'm a Jay Bell fan! Because, I enjoy and relate to every story I read. My iPad has become my soul-mate...traveling with me every day... Read morePublished 6 months ago by S. Matthews
After I finished "Something like Summer" I knew I had to keep reading the series, which is why I bought "Something like Winter" and "Kamikaze Boys". Read morePublished 8 months ago by Dora Lopez