Title: Alex & Drew
Author: Justin South
Publication Date: July 26, 2012

Rating: ★ ★ ★  ☆
The connection between the MCs and their relationship? 4 stars

The surrounding story? 2 stars

Average for overall rating? 3 stars

I really did enjoy the interactions between Alex & Drew. The two of them on their own and their relationship – those were some real high points in this story. I found myself rooting for them and hoping they would all work out.

The background behind all of that, though, was really jarring. Yes, this story contains difficult subject matter. But it seems just sort of ‘there’ in the story. The characters don’t really deal with it. When it call comes out in the open, there are tears from some, but Alex himself just seems nonchalant. He just says what happened, shrugs if off, and then is instantly over most of it? I like dynamic characters but the changes he goes through in terms of his self-esteem and the processing of what he’s dealt with just doesn’t seem to ring true.

In the end, the book is enjoyable. And I’d probably recommend it to people who can handle the content. And it is possible to look past those other things to focus on the romantic relationship in the story and revel in the love and sweetness.

Content warnings: rape, physical abuse, violence, child abuse, neglect, long-term abuse, verbal abuse, bullying