Monday, March 23, 2015

Trapped in Oz by Andrew Grey

Trapped in Oz
Trapped in Oz by Andrew Grey

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Mr. Grey has been on my to-read list for about a year now and sadly I haven’t had the chance to pick up one of his books. So when the opportunity came up to review Trapped in Oz, I jumped at it. Although it is the third book in the series, it is written as a standalone and seems to be connected to the previous books in the series by the town and the people who live there.

Even though Martin and Gary are both 20 years-old, they have had entirely different life experiences. Gary’s parents disowned him when he came out to them. Fortunately he was already set to start college, so while he had to deal with the emotional upheaval of his family’s bigotry, he at least had a plan in place and his grandmother’s death provided more stability as she left him her house. Gary had to learn the hard way that life isn’t fair and that the very people who should love you unconditionally don’t always live up to your expectations. Gary is a sweet guy, one who keeps getting back up each time life kicks him in the teeth. He wears his heart on his sleeve despite having had it abused before because when he cares for someone he does it with everything he is, which is why his family’s rejection was so painful for him.

Unlike Gary, Martin has only just begun to realize that he’s gay and has only come out to one person; he hasn’t told his parents for fear of rejection. But when his parents have to move for his father to take a promotion, Martin must find a new place to live. Fate and the classifieds lead him to Gary and they quickly discover that being roommates may be just what they need as Martin is quite skilled with household maintenance and willing to help Gary fix up the house in exchange for a reduction on the rent. Once Martin moves in and they get to know each other, they find that they are able to help each other emotionally as well.

I enjoyed watching Gary grow more confident as the book progressed. As much as I hated how he was hurt in the scene when Martin dumped him off his lap to keep his mother from seeing them together, I was happy to see him stick up for himself with Martin. Rather than portraying characters with perfect responses to situations, Mr. Grey creates characters who are real and have real responses. Gary knew that Martin was still coming to terms with his sexuality and needed time to tell his family, but that didn’t make the aforementioned scene hurt any less. There is just the right mix of angst and emotion that make the characters and their reactions authentic. Trapped in Oz was a really good read and I look forward to reading more of Mr. Grey’s writing.

I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Reviewed by Angela at Crystal's Many Reviewers!

Check out the Trapped in Oz by Andrew Grey blog post on Crystal's Many Reviewers.

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