I saw a lot of good reviews of this when it first came out and I was intrigued but wasn't able to get to it then. I finally had the chance to read this and I'm so glad I did. I really liked this. Like a lot.
It starts as an enemies to lovers story. Two rival gang members fall for each other. It may not be for everyone. It was gritty and these guys do some bad things. (I'm glad for that though. I hate when authors try to pretty up criminals and give some bs excuses for why they do the things they do.) There is drug use and criminal behaviors. There is some violence. There are also some beautiful, romantic moments and some smoking hot sex scenes. It was also surprising funny in some places.
The core of this was a touching love story. I was completely drawn into their lives and their relationship and I was on the edge of my seat from 75% on. I could feel the bad thing building up and I had no idea how they were getting out of this alive. They ending was perfect.
The writing was really good and even more impressive for a new author. Especially for a debut book. I can't wait to read her other works.
He didn't paint people; the curves of their bodies and angles of their faces never interested him as much as cityscapes. The circumstances of his life had compelled him to create new worlds that he could get lost in rather than reflect the features of the people he ran from. He constructed buildings from their foundations, making them taller and stronger than he was. He adorned the edifices with countless windows, always left open or cracked so hope could pour in and fears could seep out. Tree lined streets reminded him how to breathe, pumping oxygen through the atmosphere, off the canvas, and into his lungs.
He didn't paint people until the day he no longer desired the anonymity of his cities. The streets didn't feel like his escape anymore, not like him. Cerulean skies gave way to pale blue eyes and bus routes to pink pouts. Evan didn't paint people until he painted Jackson.
Being gay in their neighborhood is perilous. Being gay in a street gang is unheard of. Being gay and in love with a man in a rival gang is a death wish. Through drug addiction, brutality, and seemingly endless peril, they remain; finding stability within each other that shouldn’t exist in their volatile world.