Guest Reviewed by Morgan
Title: Turning 16
Author: Perie Wolford/Michelle Doering
Series: Turning 16 #1
Heroes: Sam and Mitch
Genre: M/M YA Contemporary
Length: 161 Pages
Publisher: Perie Wolford/Michelle Doering
Release Date: May 5, 2014
Available at: Smashwords, Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: New Gay Series To Pay Tribute To Sixteen Candles Movie and Other Awesome John Hughes Movies (The Second Edition)
Sam never liked his birthdays because not a single one of them was happy… When he turned 1, he fell face-down into his birthday cake; when he turned 5, he broke his left arm and when he turned 7, he broke his right arm and his left leg; when he turned 12, his house caught fire. Now Sam is about to turn 16 and he is dreading the day. The only birthday wish he has is for Jake who is the Mr. Popular of Arcadia High to even acknowledge his existence, or better yet give him a happy-birthday kiss.
But Sam knows that it’s not gonna happen. Or is it?
Disclaimer: The plot of the books substantially varies from the John Hughes movies and all the references to the movies are made as a tribute to their awesomeness.
Sam (like the heroine in the John Hughes film) has a terrible 16th birthday. But Sam (the boy) has had a string of bad birthdays, so this is nothing new. His birthday “curse” lasts for about a week this year, and every day brings about a new disaster. Some pretty awesome things happen as well, making the whole “birthday curse” a mixed blessing.
Sam likes Jake. Jake is a “straight” football star with a girlfriend. Mitch is another “straight” guy on the football team, and Sam thinks Mitch likes Melissa, Sam’s friend. In the end, it turns out: Jake likes Sam, Mitch likes Sam and Melissa likes Tom. Confusing – yeah, but that’s the fun part. Working it all out.
Perie Wolford does a nice job of honoring the film with this tribute book. Jake, in the book, is not exactly a bad guy, but he isn’t our hero. It turns out Mitch, the friend, is our hero. Well – we could see that coming, but it was still real sweet.
Sure, the easy going, everyone’s gay in this scenario (or bi) is not realistic, but it’s not supposed to be. The two hot football stars both falling for the wimpy towel boy – yeah, fantasy to be sure. But that’s just what this is. Fantasy.
I liked how Sam, the towel boy, is in the perfect place to gather ammunition to add to his wet dream stash of fantasies. That’s what kept this book YA. The only “sex” we got was tuning in to Sam’s morning wet dreams. Those were quite hot but never actually got down and dirty.
Sam’s dialog is pretty funny, and the story moves pretty quickly. The writing was solid with only a few editing errors that I noted. It was very teen-agery and angsty, but not over the top. No, it wasn’t very realistic, but it wasn’t super far-fetched either.
If you like 16 candles, John Hughes films in general, or YA books about jocks, then I highly recommend this book to you.
Overall Impression: I liked it!
*I purchased my own, personal copy of this book for review.*