Thursday, August 23, 2018

Book Review: Torn by Mia Kerick

Mia Kerick 
Publication date: August 7th 2018
Genres: LGBTQ+, Romance, Young Adult

Vinny Bucci and Tommy Stecker are almost cousins—their mothers call themselves “sisters of the heart,” so that sort of makes them cousins, doesn’t it? Since childhood, they’ve shared holidays and Sunday services and their passion for soccer. But now they’re eighteen, high school seniors, and what has always been devoted friendship—the next best thing to family—has started to feel like something else. Something more….
Unfortunately, the Steckers can’t accept their son’s same-sex romance, and upon recognizing the teens’ mutual attraction, they push Tommy into dating a girl from church, then compel him to attend a Christian College far away from Vinny’s school. The Buccis and the Steckers—once a family of choice—clash over what’s right and go their separate ways.
Forced into separation, Vinny and Tommy are both devastated, but while Vinny hardens his heart to love, halfway across the country Tommy becomes emotionally and physically ill. Their passion for each other hasn’t diminished, let alone died, but they lose contact, and for the first time in their lives learn what it is to live with a broken heart.
Will Tommy and Vinny find their way back to each other, or will they accept the rules dictated by family and try to live severed lives, their love forever unfulfilled?
A Mature Young Adult Romance

4.25 Stars

Tommy is torn between doing what's expected of him and what he really wants to do. Will he figure it out before the summer tears him away from Vinny for good?

I felt drawn to Vinny from the start. My heart broke for him when I saw how much it hurt him to see Tommy with Jenna. And I felt for him when he didn't quite allow himself to give all of himself to Tommy after they left to college and then visited Tommy in Chicago.

I wasn't too sure what to feel about Tommy at first. The way he gave in to what his mother wanted of him, well, it didn't endear him to me. I know he's a 17-18-year-old boy, but letting her railroad him into not only taking Jenna to the prom, but dating her and then just going along with what his mother wants, including ditching his best friend/cousin? Ugh, no, I just wanted to throttle Tommy right along with his dear old mom. :/ I started warming up to him when he actively sought Vinny out and actually did something about their attraction to each other, though. Then got back to not liking him when he kept dating Jenna while still with Vinny. *headdesk* Here's the thing, while I could see why he couldn't come out, I feel he took the easy way out for him, not really caring how much it hurt Vinny. So, even if eventually (finally) he made things right, by then, I was over him, even if Vinny wasn't.

While this wasn't my favorite of Ms. Merick's books, and not because it wasn't well-written, but mostly because of my feelings for Tommy, I think Ms. Merick managed to convey the longing, the angst, the deepening feelings between Vinny and Tommy and made it progress in a realistic fashion. She made me feel for the two of them and want them to get their HEA. They were sweet and hot and when Tommy was cooperating, they fit well together.

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***

Author Bio:
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—one in law school, another a professional dancer, a third studying at Mia’s alma mater, Boston College, and her lone son off to Syracuse. (Yes, there is Atlantic Coast Conference rivalry within the family.) She publishes LGBTQ romances when not editing National Honor Society essays, offering opinions on college and law school applications, helping to create dance bios, and reviewing English papers. Her husband of twenty-five years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about this, as it is a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled young people and their relationships. She has a great affinity for the tortured hero in literature, and as a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with tales of tortured heroes and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. Now she publishes her work—it’s an alternate place to stash her stories.
Her books have been featured in Kirkus Reviews magazine and have won Rainbow Awards for Best Transgender Contemporary Romance and Best YA Lesbian Fiction, a Reader Views’ Book by Book Publicity Literary Award, the Jack Eadon Award for Best Book in Contemporary Drama, an Indie Fab Award, a First Place Royal Dragonfly Award for Cultural Diversity, a First Place Story Monsters Purple Dragonfly Award for YA Fiction, among others.
Mia Kerick is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology. Contact Mia at or visit at to see what is going on in Mia’s world.

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