Friday, September 30

Rainbow Boys by Alex Sanchez

Could Nelson be in love with his best friend, Kyle? All Kyle ever talks about is Jason, the basketball jock. When Jason shows up to their Rainbow Youth group, everything changes.

All three boys must face their fears, whether it’s being rejected by their family, taking a chance on love or standing up for who they are…once they figure all that out, of course…and none of it is easy.

Along with ‘Hero’, ‘Rainbow Boys’ was one of the first LGBTQIAP books I came across online. Regardless, it took me ages to finally pick up and purchase the book. I’d seen plenty of Alex Sanchez’s books in stores and libraries before but not remembering which of the Rainbow series books came first, all I could think was, Uhh…which one do I read first?

Love triangles have always tested my scepticism and the “in love with the best friend” and “in love with the high school jock” might have seemed a bit generic but once I opened the book and started reading, I was hooked. The chapters alternate between the perspectives of the three boys. It starts with Jason the jock, the character who could have been the least sympathetic but whom I found was the most sympathetic.

All three characters are very well portrayed. They aren’t just caricatures but real teenage boys. Sanchez takes a story that in the wrong hands could have been cliché and tedious and turns it into something real and powerful.

The characters (and not just the protagonists but their friends and families) had their own flaws and made mistakes but they are all so well written. I was pulled into the story of ‘Rainbow Boys’ and devoured it.

One thing that I must note – if you are going to read Rainbow Boys, you should have the sequel on hand. There are two sequels to the novel, ‘Rainbow High’ and ‘Rainbow Road’, neither of which I have. I look forward to getting my mitts on and reading them as soon as possible, along with more of Sanchez’s novels.

Note: I discovered that this book was actually adapted into a film in Thailand, alternately titled ‘Right By Me’. That is so awesome. I must find and watch it.

Note II: It took Eli to the nth to make me notice that this book cover has Baby Bomer on it. He doesn't reflect what I feel the character looks like but still - mind blown.

In accordance with the FTC, Quill Café would like to disclose that the reviewer purchased this book. The opinions expressed are hers alone and no monetary compensation was offered to her by the author or publisher. Cover art is copyright of Simon & Schuster and is used solely as an aide to the review.

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