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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Unnecessary Roughness by GA Hauser



Unnecessary Roughness by G.A. Hauser
Publisher: The G.A. Hauser Collection
Genre: Contemporary
Other: M/M
Length: Full Length (238 pgs)
Rating: 5 Cherries
Reviewer: Jasmine

Fear regarding his sexuality was not new to Connor. Connor played the 'straight' act as long as he could. But it was taking its toll on him. Kyle recently transferred from the University of Oregon to UCLA. But what Kyle never expected was to fall head over heels for a long-haired athlete named Connor. The two men instantly grew inseparable, on and off the field. Lusting after his roommate distracted Kyle from his studies and practice. But Kyle had a hunch. A hunch that Connor may be in the closet as well.

And he was right.

Problem solved?

Their problems had just begun.

Unnecessary Roughness…You be the judge…

Even as a child, Connor Worthington knew the importance of hiding his sexuality not only from his parents, but also from the rest of the world. His parents had made it crystal clear during his youth that they hated hippie freaks, bible waving radicals, and homosexuals. Considering he’s chosen math and physics over law and refuses to cut his long hair, he’s lucky his father continues to pay the tuition bill. Even so, Connor feels defiant and wants to start living his own life instead of the lie he’s been living for over twenty years. Therefore, when Kyle Baker transfers from the University of Oregon and joins his lacrosse team, the fa├žade of being a heterosexual male in an unforgiving world begins to take its toll. Connor is exhausted and lonely from the game of denial he’s been playing with his family, friends, and most of all himself. Once he and Kyle moves in with each other and become best friends, he’s no longer lonely or alone in the world. Finally, there is someone who accepts him truly for himself.

Although it takes some time, their friendship blossoms from unrequited lust to love. However, when the rumors continue to spread around campus regarding Connor’s sexuality, his teammates begin pressuring him into quitting the team. The only person Connor can turn to and lean on is his best friend Kyle. As things begin to heat up on and off the field, Connor is forced to come out of the closet, which not only renders the two men undesirables on the lacrosse team, but also creates a bond that makes them inseparable from one another. Moreover, being together seems to be the only thing that makes their situation regarding their hostile teammates and gossip mongers on campus bearable. My heart goes out to Connor and Kyle for the ignorance and bigotry they endure from Connor’s family and their teammates. There were times I wanted to weep for them, do physical harm to those who threatened them, and comfort them so that they would know everything would eventually be okay. Connor and Kyle will capture a special place in your heart as they did in each other’s hearts.

This story is captivating and held my interest from beginning to end. There were times I found myself biting my nails anxious to see what would happen next and then thrown for a loop because I didn’t see it coming. This book is wonderful, intense, unpredictable, and will keep you begging for more. Ms. Hauser has done an excellent job of portraying the trials and tribulations that homosexual men must endure as a result of ignorance and bigotry. Like Connor, I kept wonder why it was so important for people to judge what occurred in their bedroom. In addition, Ms. Hauser’s characters came to life in that I could feel the heartache Connor experiences as he struggles not only to be accepted by his father, to be treated like a man and respected for working hard and making his own decisions, but also to be loved for himself. Perhaps if humanity focused less on what separates us from one another and more on what we can learn from our differences, we would stop destroying one another with our ignorance and prejudices? This is a book I will definitely re-read and recommend to anyone who is struggle with their sexuality and feels alone in this world. Bravo Ms. Hauser for providing us with a wonderful book that addresses some important issues in a world that is not always forgiving.

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