Thursday, September 17, 2015

Review: Cut Both Ways by Carrie Mesrobian

Title: Cut Both Ways
Author: Carrie Mesrobian
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBT
Source: HarperCollins via Edelweiss

Will Caynes never has been good with girls. At seventeen, he’s still waiting for his first kiss. He’s certainly not expecting it to happen in a drunken make-out session with his best friend, Angus. But it does and now Will’s conflicted—he knows he likes girls, but he didn’t exactly hate kissing a guy.

Then Will meets Brandy, a cute and easy-to-talk-to sophomore. He’s totally into her too—which proves, for sure, that he’s not gay. So why does he keep hooking up with Angus on the sly?

Will knows he can’t keep seeing both of them, but besides his new job in a diner, being with Brandy and Angus are the best parts of his whole messed-up life. His divorced parents just complicate everything. His father, after many half-baked business ventures and endless house renovations, has started drinking again. And his mom is no help—unless loading him up with a bunch of stuff he doesn’t need plus sticking him with his twin half-sisters counts as parenting. He’s been bouncing between both of them for years, and neither one feels like home.

Deciding who to love, who to choose, where to live. Whichever way Will goes, someone will get hurt. Himself, probably the most.
Review by Nara

So the first thing you need to know about this book is that the whole premise is built on cheating.

Cheating is actually not a big turn-off for me in books, because I kind of like seeing how the character justifies their cheating, and if/how they make amends for their behaviour. I know there are some people who will automatically not read a book if there's cheating involved, but I feel like there are obviously actually people out there who cheat, and it's interesting to see the different ways it occurs portrayed in fiction.

To be honest, I don't think I really liked any of the characters except Angus, and even then it was a mild like hanging on the edge of "like" and "no opinion". Pretty much all of the other characters were in the "dislike" or "I don't give a crap about them" categories. Brandy was completely bland and I was pretty tempted to skip most of the scenes that just had her and Will in them because they were frankly boring. And Will. My god, you frustrating asshole!

While I didn't like the characters, I actually did quite like the plot. I didn't actually condone what happened, but it was well written enough that it kept my attention and I obviously wanted to know who Will chose in the end. I really wasn't happy with the ending to be completely honest, but the ending was clearly chosen that way for a reason, and I suppose it was realistic enough.

All in all, I don't know if I'd recommend this one to people. It was good enough that I wanted to keep reading, but I definitely wouldn't read it again.

Liked it
Overall: 6/10
Plot: 3/5
Writing: 4/5
Characters: 2/5
Cover: 3/5