Title: Boy Shattered
Author: Eli Easton
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: October 16th 2018
Genre(s): Contemporary, YA Romantic Suspense
Page Count: 317 pages
Reviewed by: Susan
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
You’ll make it out of here, Brian. I swear.
I had everything. I was school quarterback, popular with girls, and my dad was proud of me. I told myself it didn’t matter no one knew the real me. And then I nearly died. Landon saved my life. He’s the bravest guy I know. He came out a few years ago, proud and fierce, and he ran into gunfire to help others. Me, I’m a mess. Can’t even stand to be in a room with the curtains open. But here’s the thing about losing it all: You get a chance to start over and be someone new, someone true. Only how can I move on when the two shooters who attacked our school were never caught? And why do I feel like I’m still in the crosshairs?
Will you kiss me?
When I came across Brian Marshall, the hottest guy in school, dying on the cafeteria floor, I did what anyone would do. I tried to save him. His request surprised me, but I figured he needed comfort, so I kissed him on the forehead. When he survived and came back to school, he was broken in body and mind. He still needed me, and soon we were unlikely besties. But what I witnessed that day woke me up. I want to demand action on gun control, lead protests, raise my fist. I’ll tear the world down if I have to. And if I can get the boy of my dreams and save the world at the same time? I’ll take it. Only I didn’t understand that the horror at Jefferson Waller High wasn’t over.
This book deals with quite a heavy subject. And while it was not all doom and gloom, this book did make me sad.
School shootings have always been this unreal thing for me, since our country doesn’t know school shootings. But here it felt so close, so real. I could totally picture the fear, the desperate need to hide, to get away. All while your friends are being killed, and there’s nothing you can do. It really is something out of nightmares.
Brian is the school’s quarterback and is quite the popular guy. But no one knows that inside Brian is not that happy. He feels like a fraud for not coming out and be open about who he really is. He hasn’t even told his best friend Jake. But Brian knows his father will never accept him, and would probably kick him out, so he keeps hiding for now. Even though there is a boy he would love to get to know better.
Landon is out and proud at school, but he also knows that doesn’t come without its difficulties. But he gets by with his two best friends who are always there for him.
When Brian is in the cafeteria on what was supposed to be a regular Friday, he suddenly hears noises and screaming. It sounds like gunfire! When he hears the announcement that there are two shooters in the school, he knows he has to get out, or at least hide, but the cafeteria isn’t the safest place to be during a shooting. He ends up squeezing himself behind the water fountain and can’t do anything but wait and watch while the shooters try to kill everyone in the cafeteria.
Meanwhile Landon was at his locker when the announcement came. He knows his best friend Josiah was supposed to be in the cafeteria, so he tries to get closer to that. He waits ‘til the shooters leave the cafeteria before looking around for his friend. But what he finds is Brian, the school’s quarterback, bleeding out on the floor. Landon quickly tries to put pressure on the wound, and can only hope Brian will hang on until help will arrive…..
I liked how this did book wasn’t as depressing as it could have been. These two boys did fall in love in the aftermath of the shooting and love is a beautiful thing, even in those circumstances. I loved how both were dealing with their own trauma, but could also support each other when things got to be too much. Especially Brian suffered from PTSD and Landon was there for him when he needed him.
When Brian had to get back to school after the shooting, I was panicking with him. I could just feel how hard it would be to ever feel safe again.
There wasn’t a lot of angst in the relationship itself and I liked that. These guys had enough to deal with already. The sexy times were not that detailed or long, and it felt fitting for this story.
So while the romance was a positive one, without too many hiccups, it still dealt with such a terrible subject, that I couldn’t help but feel sad while reading this. I just don’t get school shootings, or any shootings for that matter. Not that anybody ever will, it’s just too horrible to understand…
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