The Perfect Shine

Title: The Perfect Shine
Author: J.K. Hogan
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: March 18, 2019
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 279
Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Read book blurb here

I must admit when I started "Perfect Shine," I really wasn't in the mood for a young adult romance about two teenagers living in a very small town in Georgia. But this book grabbed a hold of my attention and really captivated me.

Jackson is a junior in high school, determined to simply survive until he can leave town and get to college where he'll be free of the bullies that plague his existence. Blake is the new kid in school, transferred from Baton Rouge and against all odds they become best friends. And when Blake reveals his bad family life, he ends up living with Jackson and his mother until they both graduate from high school.

The story starts out mainly with Jackson's POV followed with a few chapters from Blake's viewpoint but sometimes it is hard to differentiate the two voices, resulting in having to page back to the chapter heading to see who is speaking. For me personally, some of the high school scenes seemed to drag on and on, but finally college is Jackson's time to reevaluate his relationship with Blake and to reexamine his sexuality and I appreciate how Jackson slowly realizes that sexuality can't be divided into only two categories.

The romance develops slowly and is all kinds of sweet (and pretty darn sexy) and you can just feel the on-page yearning between Blake and Jackson. However the ending feels too rushed, as we get a HFN for Blake and Jackson's relationship as well as Blake's work situation, we meet a whole bunch of Jackson's new friends, and it appears the author is perhaps laying the groundwork for another book in the series featuring Jackson's roommate Cullen. Although I had a few problems with the pacing of the story, I really enjoyed this story of young love and give "Perfect Shine" 4 stars.

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