Title: Lucky Linus
Author: Gene Gant
Publisher: Harmony Ink Press
Release Date: July 23, 2015
Genre(s): Contemporary, Young Adult
Page Count: 97
Reviewed by: LenaRibka
Heat Level: 1 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Is the possibility of fulfilling your heart’s desire worth the risk of breaking it?
Fourteen-year-old Linus Lightman is understandably reluctant to trust his newest foster family, the Nelson’s, after he’s bounced through the system since being taken from his neglectful mother. He’s certain they will reject him when they find out he’s gay, and getting to know them will only lead to hurt later. Trying to cope, he builds a friendship with Kevin Mapleton, and it quickly grows into romance, despite Linus’s fears. Then a video of Linus and Kevin having sex is posted online, and Linus knows from past experience exactly what’s going to happen. This sort of scandal will cost him his new home and Kevin’s love, snatching away his fragile hopes of belonging.
There are books you love to pieces though deep in your heart you feel like you shouldn’t be enjoying them that much (we all have our tiny secrets). And there are books that you’re supposed to like – don’t we should support good guys? – but neither the serious issues, nor the nice characters, nor the well structured plot, nor the sweet epilogue make it to a memorable unforgettable read. Sometimes something is missing, and this missing chemistry is not always easy to justify.
Lucky Linus is one of those books.
Books about kids who have never got to know how it feels to be an essential part of a REAL family are tough; child abuse and child pornography are the most difficult topics to deal with.
Linus was 6 years old when he was put into foster care. Over the next eight and a half years he went through seven different foster homes, and discovered his personal survival strategy – be good, quiet, polite, unseen and focus on the lucky parts, don’t expect too much and don’t raise too big hopes. No wonder that when he at the age of 14 wound up with the Nelson’s, a warm-hearted, wonderful family, he didn’t expect that his life would be any different than usual. And it’s why he put himself in kinda standby mode, kept himself at the distance to the member of his family, tried not to build a firm relationship with his foster parents and foster siblings. What for? He was sure that something would happen anyway, that would force his new family to reject him.
Well, Linus was right: SOMETHING would really happen, and very soon, but this something, in retrospect, would be the best thing that could happen to him. This emotional earthquake, this awful experience, this boy’s disaster would change EVERYTHING in his life.
At the end of the story Linus wasn’t the only person who was lucky. I was lucky too, along with other characters, pretending not to notice the sugary sentimentality of the final phase.
All in all, Lucky Linus is a quick and touching YA novel. But I wasn’t able to REALLY connect with the characters, who seemed kinda one-dimensional to me. *sad sigh*
It’s why I couldn’t give it more than 3 stars.
Still a recommended read for all fans of YA novels.