Rone and Carson are best friends. But Rone carries a torch for Carson. In a moment of weakness, they kiss and that is witnessed by Rone’s very homophobic father. Fearing for his life and mourning the best friend he believes he pushed away with the kiss, Rone runs away just shy of his 18th birthday to LA.
He gets through the rest of his teenage years with some help from a sympathetic motel manager and a LGBTQ center. He is lucky enough to gain a beneficiary who takes him in as his own son, pays for school and guides him through life. His dream of becoming a doctor becomes reality.
Carson was left behind in their little town, wondering what happened to Rone. By happenstance, they run into each other as adults. Both shocked to see each other, they reconnect in a way that is ten years in the making.
Rone is obviously the focus of the book, but I wish there had been more Carson. The relationship didn’t begin until about halfway (ish) through the book. Up to that point it was all Rone and his life as a runaway then college student.
We did get to know a bit more about Carson when they met up again, but I wanted more. More romance, more….something. I liked Rone and Carson together and I definitely wanted more of that.
If Rone hadn’t run away because of his homophobic father, I would almost say he had a charmed life. Someone immediately helps him when he gets to LA. Basically gets a fairy godfather to pay for school and provide him with a everything he needs. Dream career. Runs into the love of his life. Little too perfect for me.
So while it was an enjoyable book, I felt that it could have been so much more- by cutting out a lot from the time Rone and Carson spent apart.
For Rone Forrester, life as a high school student is a roller coaster ride. Though he’s intelligent, good-looking, and athletic, true happiness eludes him. He’s lost his mother to cancer, his hypercritical father is a tyrant, and he spends most of his free time taking care of his little brother, Eli. And to make matters worse, Rone begins to have romantic feelings for his best friend, Carson Harrington.
When Rone is inadvertently outed, his life swirls into turmoil. His father’s homophobia and Rone’s embarrassment at the thought of facing Carson force him to flee to Los Angeles, where he hopes to find a safe haven. Instead, he quickly learns that every moment is dangerous for a homeless teenager. As time passes, Rone navigates through multiple challenges, makes friends who love him for who he is, works hard to achieve his goal of becoming a pediatric surgeon—with all its inherent triumphs and tragedies—and overcomes a failed relationship. Ultimately, his journey teaches him that in order to fulfill his dreams, he has to come to terms with his past.