Book Review: My Big Fat Southern Gay Wedding (A Southern Thing) by Sara York by ~D~

 
My Big Fat Southern Gay Wedding cover
I can’t really do this review, without doing a review of the
entire series.  There are three books in
the series: Pray the Gay Away, Sending Jack Off to Jesus and My Big Fat Southern
Gay Wedding.  These books occur in
succession, and they are not standalone, you will need to read them in order.
Pray the Gay Away begins with Jack and Andrew meeting and
Jack instantly falling in love with Andrew. 
Andrew is sure Jack is messing with him, but Jack sees through
Andrew.  He can see that Andrew is slowly
starving to death, and Jack does everything to change that.  Both young men (they are both eighteen at the
start of the series) are closeted, because in the deep South you cannot be a
young gay men without a lot of danger. 
Jack working hard to protect himself, as well as Andrew and his little
brother Billy (who you will LOVE!).
These boys quickly fall in love, and it is truly so
beautiful to watch.   They rarely get any
time together, but when they do, they make the most of it.  Sneaking touches or kisses when they can, yet
not letting anyone know about each other. 
Jack continues to save Andrew in so many ways, and works hard on the
football field to make sure that he can make a life for them both once they
leave high school.
            Jack glanced around the parking lot before
he turned his deep blue eyes on Andrew, stealing his heart and leaving him
breathless.  “Will you be my boyfriend?”
The end of PTGA is hard to read.  To know that people who have raised a child
would treat that child in such a manner that they are scared to be themselves
in front of that parent is just sickening, but realistic.  Ms. York does a fantastic job of not letting
the reader get complacent with this love story. 
As in the real world, outside forces always are lurking to potentially cause
issues, and these young men have plenty in spades. 
Pray the Gay Away cover
Personally, this was a tough book to read.  It hit me deeply with the level of child
abuse, and I had to step away from it several times to recover emotionally.
Book 2, Sending Jack Off to Jesus is the hardest of the
three books to read, in my opinion.  To
watch these young men go through as much as they did, be torn apart and left
bleeding emotionally was just so tough to read. 
They loved each other so much, and yet people felt they had the right to
interfere.  I was so very angry, and
found myself yelling at my kindle things like “why couldn’t Jack do…” or “how
could that happen to Andrew without…”  To
me those are signs of a good book.  If I
find myself trying to give characters advice, that normally bodes well for the
level of writing.  These characters are
real.
            “You’re going to do what I say. New Life will
fix you. You’ll do what they tell you to do and you’ll be normal. No more of
this gay shit. You understand?”
I will not give spoilers. However, I will say that at the
end of SJOTJ, your heart will literally break into a million pieces, mine
certainly did.  You can only pray that
Ms. York will put it back again in Book 3. 
(And I will admit that I might have sent Sara York a message or two
begging her to at least tell me there was an HEA, and the comeuppance would be
happening to the appropriate people.)
Sending Jack Off to Jesus cover
My Big Fat Gay Southern Wedding, is the end of the
trilogy.  It opens with your heart still
broken, and continuing to break.  I got
the book in the evening, and immediately started it.  I wouldn’t put it down until I got to a
certain point (when you read it, you will know what that point is—Thanksgiving.)  I also cried for about the first 30% of the
book.  These young men, age 19 at this
point, had already gone through so much, and didn’t have each other to lean on
when their worlds were falling apart. 
The way they return to each others’ lives is probably the most
heartbreaking of all.  The pain and
suffering these men, and many young gay men in society today, went through to
find their way back to one another is a lesson in itself.  Both in the love that they shared above all
else, as well as how close one can come to losing it all and never knowing it.
            “You’re the special thing in my life. I don’t
need anything else. I could live anywhere, do anything as long as I have you”.
If I had one thing I would have liked to see was a bit more
of their life in Book 3.  It seemed a
little rushed as it seemed to cover a large time span in the second half, and I
would have liked just a little more of Jack and Andrew…but that may be me being
selfish.  J
Although there was not a lot of humor to be had in this
series, there were some great spots of humor for me: Billy; the underwear; and the
Gospel boys (their name, not their actions). 
It did help to dispel the emotional upheaval that was so prevalent
through their story.
            “My underwe-you’re really going to keep it.”
“For a while, I’ll give it back to you in a couple of weeks…maybe.”
You will find yourself very quickly begging for Billy to
have his own story (and I might have heard that was a possibility now!) and
dying for the HEA. Ms. York does a fantastic job of writing Jack and Andrew to
their HEA.  They deserved it, they worked
for it.
Please read the series, and remember that acceptance can
easily be given, but when it is taken away, so much is taken with it.  I am in awe of how Ms. York was able to
convey so much struggle in everyday life for these boys, and yet they were able
to still love unconditionally.  It was an
amazing ride, and I definitely will re-read once the book hangover has faded.

Oh, and did you see those covers?  They are amazing!  Well done, Sara!!!

Probably my favorite quote:
            “Yeah, but they didn’t win.  They were on the side of hate and hate always
loses in the end.”
I cannot do anything but give this entire series 5 pieces of
eye candy. 
   

 ~D~
Amazon links to purchase:
Pray the Gay Away:
Sending Jack Off to Jesus:
My Big Fat Southern Gay Wedding:
This post may contain affiliate links. Advanced Reader Copies are accepted by Two Chicks Obsessed in exchange for an honest review without additional compensation.

Comments

  1. I agree with this whole thing. What a great series and great review. VERY good job!

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