Book Review by Gillian: Boy Midflight, by Charlie David

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Boy Midflight, by Charlie David
Second Edition (First published 2009)
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: July 4, 2016

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

summary

david-charlie-boy-midflightAt eighteen, Ashley seems to have everything: looks, talent, and even a girlfriend. What more could a young man want? Yet something is missing, and he has to come to terms with his sexuality and the possible implications for his career in the public eye. He begins dating Chris but isn’t sure he’s head over heels in love. It’s not the knight-in-shining-armor feeling he always imagined.

When Ashley is offered a big modeling job, he leaves his university in small-town Canada for a very different life in sunny Los Angeles, California. There he meets a slightly older man who makes him feel like he’s in a storybook romance. But is Ashley ready for real love, or is it just infatuation? The world is spread out before him, at once limitless and daunting, full of endless possibilities one moment and opportunities cut short the next.

Ashley floats between certainty and confusion as he tries to unravel new feelings, deal with past pain, and decide what he wants from life—and who he wants beside him during the journey.

tropes-tags

M/M Pairing
Bisexual Character
1990s Setting
Age Difference
Coming of Age
Short Story

REVIEW

Boy Midflight is an interesting little coming of age/coming out story that manages to avoid the overly angsty pitfalls that plague most books in this genre. Told exclusively through the first person POV of Ashley, an 18 yr old college student, Boy Midflight is the story of a young man on the verge of adulthood, just learning how to be comfortable in his own skin and his own sexuality.

The first part of this short story focuses on Ashley’s time in Victoria, Canada as he attends a performing arts college. When we first meet Ashley, he has just broken up with his girlfriend when he definitively concludes that his attraction lies more with men than women:

 “… I woke up and realized that in a toss-up between my girlfriend and My So-Called Life reruns there was always a clear victor. Jared Leto won, hands down, every time, without fail, irrevocably, undeniable and uncontestable hero of heroes, oh be still my heart, my sweet Jesus he’s beautiful!”

Now “single, gay and terrified”, Ashley has decided to act on the prior advances of another college student, Chris. Unfortunately for Ashley, Chris is now dating someone else and their relationship, or the potential for one, hangs in limbo. Although Chris is attracted to Ashley, he ultimately decides to remain in his current relationship, dashing Ashley’s hopes for a future together. But when Chris’ change of heart allows them to finally pursue a relationship together and they go ahead with plans for their after college future, fate intervenes with an unexpected offer that Ashley can’t refuse.

The second part of the story takes place in LA as Ashley pursues a career as a model. Although he has left Chris behind, he’s determined to make things work as part of a long-distance couple. But his growing attraction to fellow model, Mikal coupled with Chris’ radio silence are making it difficult for Ashley to stay faithful. In addition to that, he’s not even sure Mikal is gay. But when he learns Mikal is struggling with an identity crisis of his own, his opportunity to become emotionally and physically closer to the slightly older man becomes a real possibility and Ashley must decide between pursuing a future with Mikal or recapturing a past with Chris.

The author, Charlie David, states at the beginning of the book that he was a young man when he first wrote this story and that very little editing went into the re-release. And it’s clear that this story was written by someone still discovering his sense of self. As he says in the beginning, the book “is nothing fancy, just a teenager telling a love story” and that’s exactly how it comes across. There is an innocence and a sweetness to this book, especially in the latter half, that supports his claim. And while it definitely reads YA to me, that’s not a bad thing. In fact, I actually found the story to be quite charming and while it could have done with further editing (sorry, Charlie!), I still found it to be an enjoyable read.

more-from-author

A love of storytelling led Charlie to start Border2Border Entertainment Inc. He is a graduate of the Canadian College of Performing Arts and his current passions include travel, encounters with wildlife, SCUBA diving, mosaic tiling and podcasts.  He resides in Toronto and Montréal, Canada when he’s not living out of a suitcase.

You can purchase Boy Midflight from:
Publisher
Amazon
iTunes
All Romance eBooks
Barnes & Noble

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I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

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