Love Drugged was one of those books I wanted to read, but couldn’t find a copy of. I had read glowing reviews and couldn’t wait to see what the bloggers were talking about. Fortunately, James Klise, the author, was one of the authors at the Young Adult Literature Conference in Naperville, so I not only had the extreme honor of meeting and sitting with James, but I was also able to buy a copy of the novel.
I think Jamie is a character everyone can relate to, even if they’re not gay. All Jamie wants to do is fit in and be “normal”, which is something we’ve all wanted at some point in our lives. Mr. Klise has given Jamie an authentic, believable, and relevant teenage voice, which is something a lot of novels nowadays lack. Although Jamie’s actions may come across as dramatic and a bit over the top, readers will understand his reasonings and accept his choices.
Now, let’s talk about the supporting characters, shall we? Mr. Klise has not only written an extremely likable and relatable narrator, but he has also written amazing supporting characters. Every minor character has a place in the story and in Jamie’s life, and not once do they ever come across as underdeveloped or stereotypical. Celia plays off of Jamie very well and her feelings for him seem genuine and sincere. Another character I liked was Ivan, who seems like the kind of guy who would be a good friend to have. Oh, and I have to mention Jamie’s grandparents becaus they have some of the best dialogue in the novel! 🙂
As I said earlier, Mr. Klise has captured the teen voice rather perfectly and his writing in general is nothing short of amazing. His descriptions aren’t over the top and they convey exactly what I imagine he wanted. The dialogue never feels awkward or forced, which makes for smooth reading, and each character has a distinct voice. He has also infused humor and drama to make a quick-paced and engaging novel that I simply could not put down.
If you couldn’t tell already, I simply loved Love Drugged! The only complaint I have is that the ending seemed rushed, but other than that I have no complaints. It’s not just a novel about a gay teen, it’s about wanting to fit in and find a place for yourself in the world and in your own life, something that people struggle with every day. James Klise has written a debut novel that will speak to a lot of people, young and old, and I can’t wait to see what else he has in store for all of us!
To learn more about James Klise and his writing, please visit his OFFICIAL WEBSITE.
(cover image taken from Barnes and Noble’s website)