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A Sin. An Abomination. Teenagers Caleb and Matthew had been told by the radical fundamentalist church that dominated their families’ lives that a love like theirs—between two boys—was unnatural and forbidden. That it would damn them forever. The religion controlled their families like puppets, watched their every move, made keeping a secret almost impossible. They had only one chance to be together…and it would be a daring one right under the noses of the very people who would condemn them…
Hmm, where to start? Well, I’ll begin by saying that my experience with The Bible Boys is about the best example of how different reading experiences can be within an author’s catalogue.
Earlier this year, I read and loved Memorizing You by Dan Skinner. I adored it and still count it as being in my top five books of the year. In fact, I’d probably rate it within my favourite books of all time. Sadly, The Bible Boys may make it to another one of of my top five lists: the Top Five Least Liked Books. Can you believe it? I know this happens – not every piece of work will work for everybody… but this just made me cringe the whole way through. Let me explain.
I could suggest that at just 125 pages long, there wasn’t room for in depth character analysis or growth, but that’s not true. MC Matthew did grow, but it felt shallow and contrived in my eyes. I’ve read 50 page stories that I connected with more deeply; that portrayed more emotion and gentle progression in even 30 pages.
Also, there’s a helluva lot of bible bashing. Sure, there’s a point to it (e.g. getting the gist of hateful homophobic religious crap), but I don’t need paragraph after paragraph of it to understand what the characters were faced with. Also, I wonder how someone of faith would feel about reading this…?
The overly descriptive writing frustrated me too. I don’t need to hear about chopped egg and mustard sandwiches. Nor do I care about polished wooden floors. Yes, it places us in the scene, but I felt like there were too many details and not enough story.
Then there was the Monster Cock. Yup, you read that right. One of the MCs has a penis described as “Goliath” or “stolen from an animal” and yet, one young man swallows it down at first touch like it’s cocktail frankfurt. Sorry, that just ain’t gonna happen. Deep throating Monster Cocks takes allota practice – and the idea that these closeted farm boys with barely any chance to fool around have mastered that skill is, unbelievable. Nor is it likely that any virgin would ride that thing without lube for the first time. *thumbs down*
And lastly, there were the words that described sex. “Volcanic heat within” or “The first crescendo came without warning. The next one exploded with fierce force and greater volume. Five choruses ensued before the music faded into the summer air. Matt had deftly coaxed and absorbed every precious note.” Ah, no thanks.
So clearly this book didn’t work for me, but it has garnished a ton of praise elsewhere.