Last year, I fell in love with Christina Lauren and they quickly became my favorite contemporary romance author. I have sang their praises before – how they write complex characters with rich backstories that find love in a variety of circumstances. How the location becomes as important to the story and mood as the romance and back story and how that location is written with such detail and understanding that it makes me wonder if they have lived all these places that they write about.
Autoboygraphy was no different. Set in Provo, Utah, it tells the story of Tanner Scott and how he falls in love for the first time. But it’s complicated – because he falls in love with the Bishop’s son, Sebastian. And in conservative Utah, where the Mormon religion teaches that being gay is a sin, Tanner knows that this won’t be easy.
Sebastian and Tanner meet when Sebastian is the TA for Tanner’s senior writing seminar. Tasked with writing a book by the end of the semester, Tanner writes what he knows. He knows that the cute boy with the floppy hair has a smile that ruins him. He knows that their meetings to go over his book will become opportunities for the pair to get together on weekends, flirting and joking. And he knows that when he kisses his crush on the top of a mountain, his life will never be the same.
I loved the way that the nuances of family, tradition and expectations were handled here. It is easy to say that one should always follow their heart when it comes to matters of love, but it is more complicated than that when your entire life is built around your religion, including your friends, family, school, job and future.
Review by Michele W.