Title: Sex, Love, and Videogames
Author: CJane Elliot
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Shy guy Jed Carter has always felt invisible next to his charismatic older brother, Kent. Kent’s master plan for Jed is simple: University of Virginia, fraternity, business, sports, and ladies’ man. None of it is Jed, except for playing on the rugby team, which he joins in defiance of soccer-loving Kent. Jed comes out in his sophomore year and starts seeing Pete, an attractive junior, who uses him for sex and videogames. Jed wants more—in life and in love—and starts making his own plans. First on the list: getting to know Charlie, the handsome guy working at the local videogame arcade.
Charlie Ambrose has always felt like an oddball, and not just for his tendency to stutter. Being gay sets him apart from his African-American community, and as a “townie,” he doesn’t fit in with the college crowd. Charlie’s inspiration is his cousin, Morocco, who’s transgender and doesn’t give a fig about fitting in. Art is Charlie’s passion, and when a local videogame designer discovers him, Charlie’s living a dream. The only thing he’s missing is love. But the last person Charlie expects to find it with is a cute, white U.Va. rugby player named Jed.
Sex, Love, and Videogames is the third book in the Serpentine Walls series by author C Jane Elliot. This is a great coming of age story and will pull the readers in from the beginning. Keep in mind that there are parts of this story that may be difficult for some readers.
The main characters are perfect for each other. Both young men feel lacking for one reason or the other, yet when they are together, they start to feel complete. Since he does not measure up to his older brother, Jed has always felt ignored by his family. He hopes that going away to college will help him find out who he really is. Unfortunately, his brother even has control there. Charlie comes from the other side of the tracks. But like Jed, Charlie has always felt like an outsider. His stutter has kept him from becoming close to anyone outside of his family, while being half white has kept him from feeling as close to his father’s family as he would like. Another thing that these two young men have in common is the fact that they are gay, and hiding it from their families.
After meeting Jed’s brother it was easy to understand why he kept being gay a secret, as well as why he wanted to leave for college. I could not wait for him to step out of his brother’s shadow and start being true to himself. As for Charlie, I kept hoping he would finally find a way to step up for himself and let his family see the real him, even though a few already know or have guest.
While the young men are perfect together, their relationship does not necessarily start off smoothly, as both men are unsure of themselves and worry about making the first move. I loved watching them get together however and the strength they give each other is wonderful to see.
Sex, Love, and Videogames is also full of wonderful secondary characters. Some of them can be found in the first two books. While it is possible to read these books separately, I have not read the first two; I would suggest that you read the stories in order because of the character cross over. Other characters are new to readers of the previous books. I really loved Charlie’s cousin, Morocco. This is one strong young lady, who goes through a tough time but is able to find her way back. I would love to see this character get a book of her own. There were even a couple of characters I wanted to smack, one of whom is Jed’s brother’s best friend, Tucker.
When the story first started I thought it would have been great seeing Tucker and Jed get together, this of course is before Charlie came into the picture. However, as the story progressed and I got to know Tucker I began to dislike him. I could not believe that he thought the things he was doing were okay.
This is my first book by this author and I am looking forward to more.
Reviewed by: Lydia
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