Tag Archives: TJ Klune

Book Review: The Lightning-Struck Heart (Tales From Verania, #1) by TJ Klune

Once upon a time, in an alleyway in the slums of the City of Lockes, a young and somewhat lonely boy named Sam Haversford turns a group of teenage douchebags into stone completely by accident.

Of course, this catches the attention of a higher power, and Sam’s pulled from the only world he knows to become an apprentice to the King’s Wizard, Morgan of Shadows.

When Sam is fourteen, he enters the Dark Woods and returns with Gary, the hornless gay unicorn, and a half-giant named Tiggy, earning the moniker Sam of Wilds.

At fifteen, Sam learns what love truly is when a new knight arrives at the castle. Sir Ryan Foxheart, the dreamiest dream to have ever been dreamed.

Naturally, it all goes to hell through the years when Ryan dates the reprehensible Prince Justin, Sam can’t control his magic, a sexually aggressive dragon kidnaps the prince, and the King sends them on an epic quest to save Ryan’s boyfriend, all while Sam falls more in love with someone he can never have.

Or so he thinks.

This review was from my archive, whose review I posted via Goodreads on June 18, 2015. I opted to post the original here but let me add a few things because I still remember the story, and I do remember how delightful it was, and how I had to finish it right away because it was exciting; it was funny as hell, obviously, but more than anything, it’s also very affecting.

I just got my heart struck by the super-awesome goodness of this book! It’s as fabulous as Gary! Super-sweet like Tiggy and as dashing and immaculately [written] like Ryan! Gawd! Sam, why you gotta be so oblivious?!? It’s the funniest book I’ve read this year and perhaps the one that moved me the most as well.

Is it so weird that the only thing that’s bothering me until now is when Justin haughtily told Sam that he got Ryan on all fours begging for it like…super TMI. I didn’t need to hear that seriously….yeah, I guess I’m weird like that.

Anyways, again – let me emphasize how I super-loved this one!!!!!!!!!!!!! And I cannot wait for their next adventure!!!!!!!!

Jeez, I almost forgot about Kevin. LOL

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.

tjklunebooks.com

Please also note that this blog is reader-supported. When you buy through links on my site, I may earn an affiliate commission.

Book Review: How To Be A Normal Person by TJ Klune

ebook, 290 pages
Published October 16th 2015 by Dreamspinner Press

Gustavo Tiberius is not normal. He knows this. Everyone in his small town of Abby, Oregon, knows this. He reads encyclopedias every night before bed. He has a pet ferret called Harry S. Truman. He owns a video rental store that no one goes to. His closest friends are a lady named Lottie with drag queen hair and a trio of elderly Vespa riders known as the We Three Queens.

Gus is not normal. And he’s fine with that. All he wants is to be left alone.

Until Casey, an asexual stoner hipster and the newest employee at Lottie’s Lattes, enters his life. For some reason, Casey thinks Gus is the greatest thing ever. And maybe Gus is starting to think the same thing about Casey, even if Casey is obsessive about Instagramming his food.

But Gus isn’t normal and Casey deserves someone who can be. Suddenly wanting to be that someone, Gus steps out of his comfort zone and plans to become the most normal person ever.

After all, what could possibly go wrong?

I’ve read this one back in December of 2015 and I just remember loving it so much back then. Mind you, this is one of the first few books that I’ve read where one of the characters is asexual. Back then, I was not that educated about the term and I still am not the best person to talk about it but I loved that TJ Klune created this such character in the series. Disclaimer though, he’s not the MC. The main character is called Gustavo Tiberius!

Gus’ personality is lovable but there are times that he gets too preachy while most of the time, he is hysterically funny or two high-strung.

Listen, I loved the representation right here but Casey’s asexuality was a bit odd for me because the author boxed him in a way that says since he’s asexual – he will no longer be engaging in anything sexual. Like what I said, it was just odd for me.

Pastor Tommy’s moments (the MC’s dad) are my favorite moments. Then there’s the whole debacle about “We The Queens” – I loved them and the characterization was just pure genius! The call center calls are very funny at the beginning but they’ve become repetitive overtime.

TJ Klune’s humor for me is mostly a hit, but there are times in this book that it is almost crude for me. Overall, this one is fun. King of long for its plot but fun altogether.

Rating: 3 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.

tjklunebooks.com

Book Review: Who We Are (The Seafare Chronicles #2) by TJ Klune

Kindle Edition, 2nd edition, 323 pages
Published October 31st 2019 by BOATK Books (first published April 26th 2012)

Picking up from where the author left the story in the first book – Bear, Otter and the Kid are now settled into their new house called the Green Monstrosity. The names says it all folks!

Anyhoo, this little family of three still have a lot in their hands as they face their future together. The Kid is skipping a grade, attending therapy and meets his new bestfriend. Otter is still big, now works at the local studio and designated himself as Bear and the Kid’s protector. Bear on the other hand is as protective with the Kid but a lot has change as well in him aside from his diarrhea of the mouth. Anna and Creed are still working out their unlabeled relationship and Mrs.Paquin still rocks!

This book is totally way funnier and more indulgent if I may say, compared with the first book. It’s also a lot lighter in vibe and characters coming into full circle.

The coming-out dinner with Otter’s parents was just downright funny it’s almost slapstick. Ah! Indulgence! Indulgence! But I f–ng loved it! “Coitus, Drunken….oh my lawd! LOL”

oh, and my guess from the first book regarding Jonah turned out to be right. It was painfully predictable but that makes the story okay because the author didn’t drag it.

Now that Mrs. Paquin has planted a seed in my brain about Bear, Otter and Creed’s threesome – I can’t seem to get it out of my head! LOL

This book is really such a great follow up to Bear and Otter’s love story that by the end of it, I almost feel melancholic saying bye bye to them. I now couldn’t wait to read the Kid’s own story!

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.

tjklunebooks.com

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.

tjklunebooks.com