Book Review: Bear, Otter, and the Kid (The Seafare Chronicles #1) by TJ Klune

Kindle Edition, 2nd edition, 375 pages
Published November 1st 2019 by BOATK Books (first published August 11th 2011)

I’ve just realized that I don’t have the review of this book right when I was searching my blog for TJ (or T.J) Klune and I could’ve sworn that I’ve read a few of his books already. Apparently, I have it on my Goodreads profile so here’s a little review throwback showing up this year. I’d just like to post this first while I’m working on my review for The House in the Cerulean Sea which I’ve recently finished. So here it goes…

This is my very first book by T J Klune and I’m totally aghast of not catching onto it sooner. He’s got some mad skills! He’s witty, direct, a bit self-indulgent at times but that’s when you know you’re up for a good ride.

The title of the book is a bit strange and sounded silly but once you started it, you’ll find that it’s neither strange nor silly. The book was told through Derrick McKenna’s (Bear) perspective starting on how her mother abandoned him when he was about to turn 18 and was left to be the sole care taker of his six year old brother Tyson (Kid). As the story progresses, we meet the people supporting Bear on what seemed to be a dire situation for a barely legal adult to carry.

This support group includes Creed (Bear’s best friend), Anna (Bear’s on and off again girlfriend), Mrs.Paquin (Bear’s 70 year old sitter) and Oliver aka Otter (Creed’s big bro). Unexpectedly, Bear initially finds himself leaning more towards Otter for emotional support which eventually led to Otter running away to California leaving Bear devastated beyond measure. Three years later, Otter is back and will do everything to make it up to Bear. Their reunion proves to be more than just making up for Otter’s abandonment. Bear also needs to face the truth about himself, fight for the Kid and the man he couldn’t live without.

I really do like the first person point of view narration and I really enjoyed the book except for the final few pages which was a bit depressing to be honest. I also find it a bit anticlimactic and the confrontation’s a bit subdued for my taste.

(Oh, I’m also guessing that Jonah has something to do with Bear’s mother sudden appearance)

The book is truly a beautiful journey with these nice people who are all awe-inspiring!

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About The Author
TJ KLUNE is a Lambda Literary Award-winning author (Into This River I Drown) and an ex-claims examiner for an insurance company. His novels include the Green Creek series, The House on the Cerulean Sea and The Exraordinaries. Being queer himself, TJ believes it’s important–now more than ever–to have accurate, positive, queer representation in stories.


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