ARC Review: Stupid Love by SC Carter
Stupid Love by S. J. Carter
ARC provided by Gay Romance Reviews
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This one should have come with a content warning. This book talks about sexual assault, bullying, alcohol and drug abuse, physical assault, child abuse and PTSD.
This book is a prime example when they said don’t judge a book by its cover. What I thought was a cute second-chance love story between two people who went to high school together, turned out to be an angst-ridden story laced with some very heavy subject matter.
Riley’s an English teacher at Five Foxes High school. Colton returns to town and just secured an assistant coaching job at Five Foxes High School. These two had a shared dark history together. Riley holding a serious grudge against Colton, while Colton is trying to atone for the things that happened back in high school.
The story shows real-life dynamics and struggles of being an LGBTQ youth in high school. The resounding fear of coming out, the serious consequences and trauma of bullying and homophobia. While the sexual assault happened off the page, the trauma it caused reverberates throughout the book. This story hits hard and is angsty, but it’s life.
I love how the author wrote a present-day story while also giving us a mirror of the past. It gives us this feeling of “I sure as heck this isn’t history repeating itself”.
Riley and Colton got their HEA but they had to fight against the shadows of the past. When I got to the epilogue, I finally got the sweet and cute vibe that I thought I’d get from the book cover.
Face to face with an old grudge.
Riley Chase escaped the drama of Five Foxes High School when he went away to pursue his dreams of Broadway. After returning home to help a friend in need, now the only drama Riley can handle comes from his students on stage. But to keep drama club funds, Riley is forced to work with his old nemesis—the guy he’s hated since senior year.
Colton Effing Landry.
That old grudge is also smoking hot…
Since his senior year a decade ago, Colton has tried to make amends for his past mistakes—lying for a homophobic bully first and foremost. He never thought he’d be back at the school with so many bad memories. Still, he needs the job. But Colton’s first day as Five Foxes High’s new girls’ JV coach hits him with bad news. Two of his athletic teams are on the chopping block due to budget cuts.
And that’s where he finds Riley Chase.
Riley Chase, the guy he had a crush on back during high school. The same Riley Chase whose last words to him during their senior year were I hate you.
Not the way to kick off a new job.
A stormy past could lead to a nightmare of a fall semester.
Now they have to work together to raise the money to save their programs. It’s either that or let their kids down.
Can Riley really trust the guy who betrayed him all those years ago? And can Colton prove to Riley he’s not the same dumb kid he was back in high school?
Can hate really turn to love?
Stupid Love is an enemies-to-lovers, contemporary gay romance novel featuring a nerdy English teacher and a hot jock coach with a little angst, some sensual heat, an HEA, and no cliff-hangers. It can be read as a stand-alone novel.