Title: Surviving Elite High: Loving James
Author: John H Ames
Publisher: Ai Press
Characters: James Gordon and Jacob Ashmore
POV: 1st Person
Sub-Genre: Contemporary, Coming of Age, Series
Surviving a normal high school is hard enough. Surviving Elite High? Close to impossible! Not until you learn the difference between love and obsession…
Sixteen year old James Gordon has it all. He’s rich, studious, and bears quite a strong resemblance to Justin Bieber. So, what’s stopping him from being a normal kid in high school? The deadly jocks. They torment anyone who’s gay or possibly closeted; even though Nick Wild Hawk, star of the football team and the love of his life, John, came out to the whole school in previous years and made being gay at Elite High just another walk of life.
However, even though the jocks have bullied James nonstop and made his life a living hell, he can’t help but fantasize about the king of the jocks, Nathan Parker. Nathan is rugged, straight and the most popular guy in school. When fate intercepts and places James and Nathan under the same roof, James’ torture really begins. And yet, through it all, James hopes that that his steadfast love for Nathan will change the jock into a lover rather than an abuser. Unless a certain hot, loyal, guy in the background can find a way to show James he is really, truly loved, and has been for a long time. Before it’s too late…
Surviving Elite High: Loving James is the third book in author John H Ames’, Surviving Elite High series. While it is a short story, it is so packed that the reader will feel as if they have read a full story.
This new book centers on James, who readers have met in the previous books. He is a shy, geeky student who comes from a well to do family, but while everything on the outside looks great, inside he worries about what his father and best friend will think if they found out he is gay. James also worries about the bullies who are once again showing up at school.
With all the insecurity James is already feeling, it is understandable that he does not take the news of his father’s remarrying well. As I read this part of the story, I could not help but think that James’ father was to blame for some of his son’s behavior, due to the way he told James he was getting married, without giving him any real time to adjust to the news. When it is revealed who will be James’ new family, I could not help feeling bad for the young man. Right away I worried that the abuse James’ was getting at school would soon be carrying over to his home life. What follows may be rough for some readers to read.
Due to the bullying and abuse that James goes through the story has a bit of a dark feel to it and I wondered just when the feel of Surviving Elite High: Loving James would change. Readers may be surprised to see who comes to James’ rescue. When Jacob appears in the story it was easy to see that there is some kind of connection between the two young men, but with everything going on in his life, James has a hard time seeing it.
Surviving Elite High: Loving James is a fast read that will hold the reader’s attention from beginning to end. While it covers some dark topics, I found the story to be well written, and fans of the first two books will want to make sure they don’t miss this one. I hope this is a series the author plans to continue and can’t wait to see what else he has planned.
Reviewed By: Lydia