Member Reviews

I received an arc of this title from NetGalley for an honest review. There are way too many trigger points with racism, body shaming, and homophobia. Also, not well written.

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I don't think I have ever DNF'ed a book so quickly. WOW.

I can't believe someone actually thought this story was a good idea and (I'm assuming) other people read and agreed that it was either 'good' or 'okay'.

This book had way too many instances of racism, homophobia, and body shaming to be considered appropriate. It went way beyond 'setting the atmosphere' or 'providing context of the environment'. The only way I can see someone writing those words, in that context, is because they are also racist, homophobic, and fatphobic.

I tried really hard to find some positives in the book, but it just wasn't there.

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This book is a view into Texas high school football and its truly homophobic, racist, and basically repugnant backdrop behind the scenes of the Friday night lights. If you are going into this book thinking you're going to read the m/m version of Friday Night Lights - you are definitely not. There is no happy ending to this story and no real resolution to the tension for Robert and what he is experiencing. I am certain, however, that what he goes through in the book is very much the reality for a lot of high school kids - particularly queer male athletes.

This book is filled with homophobia and all the accompanying slurs. It also has truly vile racist language and acceptance of such as being just a part of life in the town. This is not a feel good story. This is a heavy read that doesn't leave you with a hopeful feeling.

Overall - I would very much caution reading this unless you fully understand what you are getting into.

I received this as an ARC via NetGalley, but these opinions are all my own.

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DNF for me. I couldn't handle the constant homofobia and racism... and when the main character's best friend nearly kills someone simply because he is a bigoted asshole, and main character excuses his sickening behaviour due to his awful homelife, I simply could not go on. Having a rough life does NOT EXCUSE BEING A JERK!

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Nice sport romance. The idea was good, well written. The characters are nice but maybe lack a bit of depth? It was fun to read, definitely a good read.

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Save yourself!!!! Do NOT read this book. this book was full of casual and accepted racism and homophobia. The writing was horrible, and the characterization was too. The main character was a total jerk and airhead. I would not recommend this book to anyone,

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Content warning for the review: detailed discussion of racism in the book, mentions of racist, ableist, and homophobic slurs, mention of slavery and the Confederacy.

A disclaimer for the following review is that I requested this book because I was concerned about the choice to name the main character Robert Lee. The first thought I had was to wonder why someone would name their main character after the most famous figure of the Confederacy. As someone who grew up in the Deep South, it was an impossible connection to miss. There is simply no way someone who was raised in this region doesn't know who that man is. But the name Robert and the name Lee are not obscure so I wanted to read the book to see if this was ever addressed or if it was just an unfortunate coincidence that needed to be pointed out to the author and fixed before publication. Because regardless of intention, it will be the first thing many people think of when they read the name Robert Lee.

Unfortunately, after reading portions of the book I've come to the conclusion that it was an intentional choice. A disclaimer is that I did not read this book in its entirety. It was obvious from the first chapter that this was not a book I wanted to read. While I did appreciate the inclusion of trigger warnings at the beginning of the book for racism and slurs, it does not make the author's choice to write racist characters and use slurs acceptable in any way, shape, or form. There are multiple characters in this book who are violently and belligerently racist to the Black people and people of color in this novel and that racism is not only excused- the racist characters are protected by Robert from being punished or reprimanded (in a meaningful way that causes change in behavior) in any way. There are racist, ableist, and homophobic slurs in the first two chapters and throughout the rest of the novel. Slurs are used cavalierly and frequently. Not only is there racist dialogue from characters but the narration and telling of the story is incredibly racist towards the characters of color as well.

I concluded that naming of Robert Lee after Robert E. Lee was intentional for a number of reasons. First, this book is set in Texas and written by an author from Texas. There is absolutely no way that the author does not know who Robert E. Lee is. After keyword searching my eARC, there is no mention of the Confederacy or General Robert E. Lee, but even still the connection is obvious. Not only that, but the main character is often referred to as 'Robert Lee.' So the reader never forgets that the main character is named after Robert E. Lee. It is reprehensible to name a character after an enslaver and general who led the armies which aimed to maintain the institution of slavery in the United States.

Do not read this book. It is terribly racist.

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