Sam and Charlie used to be best friends. But then Sam cut Charlie out of his life—no explanation, no discussion, nothing.
Fast-forward one year, and both Sam's and Charlie's lives are spiraling out of control. Sam has a secret he's finding harder and harder to hide, and Charlie is dealing with an increasingly absent dad and a dealer whose threats are anything but empty. Now, during the sticky Florida summer before their senior year, the ex-best friends are thrown together once again when they have no one else to turn to.
A year had passed like smoke in a breeze. Suddenly, later was now.
Adult novelist Ryan (Send Me) makes his young adult debut with this honest perspective on coming to terms with one's identity. The story centers around two ex-best friends 17-year-olds Sam and Charlie supposedly in their high school prime. Sam's father has moved out in order to "research his book" (but really to stay with his "friend" David abroad), and his mother's fill-in boyfriend, Teddy, is blatantly homophobic. Sam is attracted to his new gay friend, Justin, but denies these feelings to himself and others. That his father is apparently gay only fuels Sam's angst ("Can't you just hear the talk? Sam Findley's dad's a homo, and he's turned Sam into one, too"). Meanwhile, Charlie has his hands full caring for his father, an alcoholic widower, and he smokes pot as an escape. Charlie's girlfriend dumps him after finding out about his drug habit, and he owes his increasingly threatening dealer $500 money that he doesn't have. In a surprisingly believable reconciliation, the boys finally confide in each other, learn how wrong assumptions can be and slowly begin to rebuild their friendship. Teens will find both boys' storylines (and narrative voices) thoroughly compelling right through to the end, which leaves many ends rightfully untied, underscoring the lingering effects of life's messier moments. Ages 12-up.
I really enjoyed this book. I couldn't put it down. I'd recommend it to anyone looking for a good story about finding acceptance and coming to terms with whoever or whatever they are.
The book was good, was not happy with the ending
I loved this book it reminded me about my situation with my best friends. Love the ending Charlie is a very sweet friend