Concourse by Santino Hassell

3 stars 

“There’s not always weakness in forgiveness.” 

I had read a lot of mixed reviews on Val’s an Ashton’s story, so I went in with low expectations and an open mind. And while I didn’t love it, I did enjoy these two characters.

Concourse is the story of gay instagram star Ashton, or A Town. Known for being a partier and slutty after a sex tape from his youth. Val’s mom used to work for Ashton’s family, so the two boys grew up together and formed a special bond. Constantly in and out of each other’s lives, the two begin spending more time together, and feelings get mixed.

I wanted to like this book a lot, I really did. But if there’s one thing I hate, it’s wishy washy characters and both Val AND Ashton fit the bill. Well it also didn’t help that the first 20% of the book all that seemed to happen was the characters driving around and just kind of not doing much. The plot didn’t move forward at all until 50% in.

I liked Val and Ash as individuals, it was their actions toward each other that drove me crazy. I would liken this couple/book to Hard Wired by Megan & Santino, and Rowdy by Jay Crownover. By this I mean when one character finally made up their mind about what they wanted, the other character starts to backtrack. IT’S SO FRUSTRATING!!! And not in an angsty good way.

I really liked the self journey Ashton went on to improve his quality of life and to give a good impact in the world. Val’s journey was more about giving up on old things that didn’t seem to matter anymore, just letting go.

I still love Santino, I’ll read anything the man writes. This one just wasn’t a winner for me.


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