Another one of those stories where you have to hurt before you get your happy.
The story is All Boy by Mia Kerick, a YA LGBTQ Romance that released in June.
Seventeen-year-old Callie Canter knows all about screwing up—and being screwed over. After her so-called boyfriend publicly humiliated her senior year, taking a fifth year of high school at Beaufort Hills Academy is her second chance to leave behind a painful past. But her need for social acceptance follows, and going along with the in-crowd is the difference between survival and becoming a target. Staying off the radar is top priority. So, falling for an outsider is the last thing on Callie’s “to-do” list. Too bad her heart didn’t get the memo.
With his strict, religious upbringing and former identity far away in Florida, Jayden Morrissey can finally be true to himself at Beaufort Hills Academy. But life as a trans man means keeping secrets, and keeping secrets means not getting too close to anyone. If he can just get through his fifth year unnoticed, maybe a future living as the person he was born to be is possible. Yet love is love, and when you fall hard enough, intentions crumble, plans detour, and secrets are revealed.
From multi-award-winning author Mia Kerick, comes a powerful, timely, and life-changing novel, which follows two teenagers nursing broken hearts and seeking acceptance, and who together realize running away isn’t always the answer.
Just what I need—Shawn Heck and his goon, Carlos Luna. Either they snuck up on me, or I was so caught up in worrying about bathroom issues that I didn’t notice they were already here. My best bet is to ignore them, so I bend in half to touch my toes as if I didn’t hear the taunt.
Carlos apparently doesn’t appreciate my show of disrespect to his crime boss. He steps up beside me, sticks his foot on my lower back, and presses. When my nose touches my knee, the muscles in the back of my legs scream. “He asked you a question, pansy.”
I roll out of the painful position. “I’m not bothering you guys, so why don’t you take a hike?”
“I think he wants us to pick on somebody our own size.” Shawn grabs me by the neck of my sweatshirt and pulls me to my feet. “You’re such a freakin’ lightweight. I’ve got no clue what she sees in you.”
“He’s probably one of those sensitive guys,” Carlos suggests. “Girls get into that shit.”
They both laugh, but Shawn doesn’t let go of my sweatshirt.
“Stay the hell away from Callie.” Shawn issues his demand, and then shakes me so hard my teeth chatter. “She’s mine.”
I hate that he just claimed ownership of another human being. And I hate being so terrified of this Neanderthal that I momentarily consider keeping my distance from Callie. I guess I like Callie too much for my own good. But I hate it most that my greatest fear is he’ll find out about my body—his hands are too close to my chest for comfort.
I want to fight back so badly I can taste it. These guys have no right to do this to me. But the risk of exposure is too great if I get into something physical with them. I twist out of Shawn’s grasp, snatch my water bottle from off the floor, and head for the exit, glancing back just once to see if my escape is successful. He straddles a stationary bike, plugs in his ear phones, and starts to pedal. Carlos has something more to prove. He follows me.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—one a recent graduate of law school, another a professional dancer, a third studying at Mia’s alma mater, Boston College, and the baby finally off to college. (Yes, the nest is empty.) She publishes LGBTQ fiction and romance when not editing National Honor Society essays, offering opinions on college and law school applications, helping to create dance bios, and reviewing English papers. Her husband of twenty-five years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about this, as it is a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of young people who are challenged by the circumstances of their lives and relationships. She has a great affinity for the tortured hero in literature, and as a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with tales of tortured heroes and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. Now she publishes her work—it’s an alternate way to stash her stories.
Her books have been featured in Kirkus Reviews magazine. They have won a 2019 IPPY GOLD award for Juvenile/Young Adult Fiction, Rainbow Awards for Best Transgender Contemporary Romance and Best YA Lesbian Fiction, a Reader Views’ Book by Book Publicity Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction, the Jack Eadon Award for Best Book in Contemporary Drama, an Indie Fab Award, a First Place Royal Dragonfly Award for Cultural Diversity, a First Place Story Monsters Purple Dragonfly Award for YA Fiction, and a category finalist for the Eric Hoffer award, a finalist in the National Indie Excellence Awards for Young Adult Fiction and more.
Mia Kerick is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.
Contact Mia at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit at http://www.miakerickya.com to see what is going on in Mia’s world.
- $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner
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