Friday 25 October 2013

Book ~ "Fearless" (2013) Chris O'Guinn

From Goodreads ~ At fifteen, Justin is already a cynic. He’s experienced too many betrayals, too many disappointments. He doesn’t want to be involved in anything. He doesn’t want to be popular. He doesn’t even want friends anymore, since they only ever let you down. He just wants to get through high school and the best way he can come up with to accomplish that goal is to simply be invisible.

His self-imposed exile from high school life is threatened when Liam, the scary stoner, reaches out to him. What starts out as a strange and unsettling encounter with the unnerving, pot-smoking teenager evolves into the sort of friendship that changes the course of a person’s life.

But as Liam drags the reluctant Justin out of his shell, Liam’s own secret is revealed.

Fearless is the story of the myriad shades of love, how to find one’s courage and the transformative power of friendship.

Justin is a geeky 15-year-old loser.  He is tired of being made fun of so he avoids everyone and has no friends.  His parents have gone through a bitter divorce and he lives with his mother ... his father regularly defaults on support payments so they are barely getting by.  Justin spends most of his time in his room online and in chat groups.

When Justin meets Liam (who is the same age as him), he sees him as a stoner and a thug.  He can't understand why Liam seeks out his friendship.  They are complete opposites but become best friends.  Liam gives Justin the confidence to come out of his shell and stand up for himself.  Justin becomes an important person to Liam as he fights Lou.  The book details their friendship and bond.  There's so much more I'd like to talk about but I don't want to give away some of the plots.

This is the first book I've read by this author and I enjoyed it.  I liked the writing style.  It's written in first person (from Justin's perspective) and the tone is conversational (like Justin is talking to us and telling us what's going on).  It's a YA book but because of the language and some activity, I would recommend it for a more mature YA and older.  The story and writing kept me interested and wanting to read more ... I didn't find it too immature for me even though it's about teenagers.

I liked the characters.  Once Liam was able to get Justin to trust him and be himself, the interaction between them was funny and honest.

“Man, I can’t believe we’re stuck at home instead of at the Homecoming Dance.”

“Trust me, this is better,” I told him. “At least for me. My dance moves are outlawed in twelve states.”

Liam cracked a smile. “I got to see that.”

I frowned at him. “No.”

Liam’s eyes lit up with mischief. “Uh uh, you can’t keep claiming to be bad at everything without proof. You have to show me.”

“I really don’t.”

He went over to my laptop and called up the music player. “Hmm, let’s see, what do we have for playlists? ‘Life sux?’ ‘Love sux?’ I’m sensing a theme here.”

“At least I’m consistent.”

“True. Hey, ‘OMG the 80’s’ I think we have a winner.”

“I’m not dancing,” I told him.

I thought my tone was pretty firm. That didn’t prevent him from yanking me to my feet, though, with a strength I didn’t think he had. As the familiar beat of one of my favorite classics warbled out of my laptop’s crappy speakers, I folded my arms and backed away from the crazy guy with the infectious smile.

“Come on, feel the beat,” Liam coaxed.

I just couldn’t hang onto my glower, not with him gyrating and flailing like a fish out of water. It didn’t seem possible, but somehow he was actually as bad or worse than me.

“Oh girls just want to have fun,” he sang—badly—and danced (if one could call it that) over to me.

“You really don’t get the whole ‘no’ concept, do you?”

Justin's mother works a lot but she and Justin have a good relationship (one based on lies of omission, according to Justin).  Liam's parents are also hardworking and care about their son.

I enjoyed this book and would recommend it.


Natasha said...

Sounds like a great read!!
Thanks for the amazing giveaway!
natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

Masshole Mommy said...

Sounds like a great book!!

Mary Preston said...

Thank you for the tour. It's been wonderful.


Andra Lyn said...

Do either of your characters have a more masculine or feminine role? How do you choose which one is which!?

andralynn7 AT gmail DOT com

Chris OGuinn said...

Not sure what happened to my first comment....

Thank you for hosting. And thanks to everyone for chiming in.

Andra, this is not a romance, but a book about friendship. However, I will say assigning a feminine role to any male romantic partner in a story drives me bonkers.

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting

Rita Wray said...

It's been a great tour. The book sounds fabulous.


Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the review!


british rocking cow said...

Looking forward to all of your releases!

Catherine Lee said...

That's a thoughtful review. Thanks for sharing your insights on the book.
catherinelee100 at gmail dot com

bn100 said...

Very nice review

bn100candg at hotmail dot com