Title: Date me, Bryson Keller
Author: Kevin van Whye
Published: May 19th, 2020
Sequel, series, or stand-alone? Stand-alone
Previous book: –
Following book: –
Main characters: Bryson Keller; Kai Sheridan
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Hi everyone! It´s been a while since I brought a book review over here! This time around, as you probably saw in the title, it´s the turn of “Date me, Bryson Keller” by Kevin van Whye a book that, according to Goodreads, it´s the perfect What If It’s Us meets To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and well, for once, I think that they actually hit to the point. Without further ado, let´s in that review.
This book follows simply one of my favorite troops, which is “fake dating” so, since the beginning, I knew it was going to be a fluffy, enjoyable, read to maybe smile a little bit, which I think we all need right now and not much more to that. When I opened “Date me, Bryson Keller” I didn´t expect the book to have any remarkable effect on me, but it turns out, that I was wrong. This book has so many more layers than I initially imagined.
The novel follows Kai Sheridan, a boy, who had a big, big, huge, secret that he had kept throughout his whole life. That is, of course, until Bryson Keller.
Bryson Keller is the most popular jock at school. Everyone is a little bit (or hugely) in love with him and yet, he had never dated anyone, not even once. He claimed that it was a waste of time. That is of course until he is dared to date someone new, every week, for the rest of the semester.
Bryson took it as a game, or at least, that´s how it felt with every single girl that asked him out during the whole challenge. He was kind to all of them, of course, but there wasn´t love, no deeper connection. However, during the very last week, closeted Kai Sheridan, after having a particularly bad day, asks him out. He wasn´t thinking, it was just for the sake of it, nothing more, he didn´t even expect Bryson Keller to accept. But he did.
Many things can change in a week.
Bryson and Kai form a relationship in little time, although it does not feel like insta-love at all. They had cute exchanges from the beginning, making Kai find newfound confidence in him to tell Bryson the depths of a secret that he wasn´t even able to tell his very best friends, Priya and Donny, and even less so, to his up-tight catholic family. Things were perfect between them, so I didn´t expect much more would happen but then, the book surprised me.
These two boys are forced to suffer more than a high school relationship should, only due to homophobia and prejudice all around them. So much that I just wanted to step into that book, hug them, and usher that everything would be alright. Kai has to build up his courage to face his family, his friends, and the whole school. Which no teenager should be ever forced to do, regardless of their sexual orientation. And these kinds of things, are the ones that make me reflect on how horrible, it is, that these things do happen, queer people are humiliated every day, society forcing them to go through something straight people don´t have to. No one should be forced to announce who they love to anyone we don´t owe our sexual orientation to society or even our families, it´s our thing to tell, and only if we want to. I didn´t expect to cry during this book. I ended up in tears.
The world is messed up.
It´s up to us to change it.
If I have to point out a negative thing of the book, I would say that maybe the author got too caught up in representing this matter, which is extremely important, that he forgot to develop a bit other plots or characters that he introduced throughout the pages, for example, Kai was really worried about an assignment at the beginning that really mattered to him but then, the matter is never spoken of again, or even the development of Bryson Keller himself. He was always there for Kai, but we don´t get to know about him in-depth.
Finally, there was a part of the book, that Kai felt alone. That he had no one in his life he could trust with his secret. But what he didn´t know, is that he had an ally when everything was dark, there was someone rooting for him, we all have. In Kai´s case, it was his little sister Yasmine, who stood up for him and acted the way his parents didn’t have the courage to.
You have one too… With whatever you are struggling with, there´s is someone rooting for you. Even if it doesn´t feel like it.
But if everything gets too dark and you feel that there´s no one else to trust, I´m here for you.
This is my e-mail. firstname.lastname@example.org it´s a safe place to write whatever you need to.
And if e-mail it´s too outdated for you, here´s my Twitter: LettersCoffee1