~Review by ~Wendy~
Grayson by Morgan Campbell(Bully Series Book 1)
I want to start by saying that this book made me”ugly cry”.Not just a little, but a lot !!!
I started to read the prolog and “BAMM”, there were tears and snot and it lasted for hours. This book took me through the wringer and I just want to let everyone know that there are some very sensitive subjects in this book and the author didn’t pull any punches.
This story is divided into two parts. It starts in the past, 10 years ago, when Grayson is 16 years old. He’s a gay student who’s into arts. He only has 2 friends , nobody really pays him much attention. He has recently started chatting with another gay boy, Logan. He has a wonderful mom and loving aunts and uncles. Life isn’t so bad for Grayson. This is all about to change ,though…..
An art assignment is about to change everything for Grayson. They were assigned to paint someone, that people look up to. Grayson decided to paint someone from his own school, instead of a famous person. He made a painting of “Finn”. The high school quarterback whom everyone admired.
This turns out to be a huge mistake, because of Finn and his cronies, single Grayson out and start bullying him. Every week things get worse and worse for Grayson. It starts with a beating and escalates to extreme violence. It was very hard to read about all this. I cried for 4 hours straight. It comes to a point where everything gets to be too much for Grayson and he starts hurting himself…
Eventually, Grayson himself makes an extreme decision, because he just can’t go on like this anymore….
Fast forward 10 years to the present. Grayson has changed his name, he’s a very successful businessman. He has earned his first million at the age of 22 and is the CEO of the major company that he owns. He doesn’t paint anymore and he’s also firmly in the closet. He doesn’t date and he doesn’t do hook-ups. He only indulges himself in sex once a year, at a private sex club.
Finn has recently come out of the closet after his wife caught him with another man. He is now divorced and has a new job that he’s very good at. Even though he still has some guilt about his younger years, he’s pretty happy with his life. That’s when he meets his new boss…..yess you’ve guessed it right….his new boss is Grayson.
Grayson is extremely upset when he realizes his former tormentor is one of his new employees. He wants Finn out, but because of Finn’s contract, this isn’t a possibility. They fight some and damn ..I was so angry with Finn !! He get’s that Grayson is a bit upset with him, but because he doesn’t know the full story about what happened to Grayson, he feels like Grayson is overreacting a bit. He never stopped thinking about Grayson and has always fantasized about him. He himself couldn’t come out, because of his abusive father, so he felt like it was either be the bully or become bullied himself. I hated Finn…part of me still hates Finn.
Now the next part is where the author started to lose me a bit. I will try to explain but most of it is a big spoiler.
(THIS IS SPOILER)
(view spoiler)Finn and Grayson have to go on a business trip together, even though Grayson doesn’t want to. I figure if you’re the owner and CEO of a company, of you don’t want to go, you can send someone else….apparently not ! Once on the road, they get into an accident and a snowstorm, which causes them to hide away in one of the houses nearby. This was all a bit OTT to me. Once forced together, they share their secrets and Finn finds out what exactly happened to Grayson. This, of course, causes Finn to have a nervous break-down and Grayson goes out of his way to comfort him. Then there is kissing and feelings and love and it was just all too much way too soon. It just didn’t make any sense to me. I’ve spent 75 % of this book crying over what was done to Finn and now in the last 25%, I’m just gonna have to accept that they love each other and that Grayson just forgives him for the hell he has put him through.
NO WAY !!! Not that fast. It’s not that I couldn’t get behind them being together, but for me ,this was a huge case of insta-love. I’m normally not a big fan of insta-love but in this case ,it just didn’t make sense to me. I was still in pain from hours of crying, so I wasn’t as forgiving as Grayson was.(spoiler end)
Grayson’s feelings for Finn start to grow pretty fast when they are forced to spend time together and Finn even makes him want to start painting again. If he wants a future with Finn he will have to completely let go of the past. He tries to hang on to his hurt (not very hard), but he just can’t. He loves Finn…simple as that.
Now he just has to convince his family and friends to also give Finn a chance…
I wish I could be as forgiving as Grayson. I just couldn’t…. Maybe if I read Finn’s story, which is next, I will feel different. Right now, I’m still holding a mean grudge towards Finn. I understand that he didn’t have it easy growing up himself, but that doesn’t excuse his behavior. That would mean that everyone who has a hard life is allowed to be an asshole. I also know that Finn’s friends were the ones taking things too far, but Finn was the culprit, of it all.
I’m so conflicted about this book, that I just don’t know how many stars to rate it. The first 70 % was a 4,5 star read to me because a book that can make me cry like that….wow.
But the last part, it all felt too rushed to me and I would give that part about 3 stars.