Going Down (2018) by Allison Temple is a fantastic short read.
The story is set at a school reunion ten years after everyone has left. It follows the romance of Lucas Sanderson and Ben Hammersmith. Lucas has always fancied Ben and the story is told from his POV but Ben secretly feels the same. Lucas has to give a speech about his father at the reunion who he didn’t really get on with and is introduced by the headmaster who is a typical old-fashioned bigot who doesn’t even remember Lucas. In addition, the bullies of the school with head honcho Watt are still been idiots. So Lucas has a lot to put up with but he has the support of his friends married couple Felicity and Riya. After the reunion Lucas ends up getting stuck in the lift with Ben. Convenient but fabulous. And they begin to play Truth or Dare which brings out a whole host of secrets and helps them begin to understand each other more.
I loved the story and the author’s writing style. There is a great voice and lots of personality to this short. I really felt I got to know both characters especially Lucas who was my favourite character. His inner feelings about life are very on point and entertaining, very honest which I appreciated. In the course of the story there is many important issues dealt with such as bullying, prejudice towards LGBTQ+ people and people of colour and understanding of where you and another person are coming from to find peace and happiness which Lucas and Ben do when they are trapped together.
I will say that Watt seems to have a bit more to his story. I could be wrong but I felt that he might fancy Lucas and that was why he was being a moron. I could be very wrong on that but that was the feeling I got.
The story is a common plot but the way it is written is delightfully original and the character of Lucas drives the whole story along so, so well. I was very impressed with the writing here. Great humour present too.
A brilliant read.
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