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Lemon Reef by Robin Silverman
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Lemon Reef

by Robin Silverman

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    The Value Of Rain by Brandon Shire (gaialover)
    gaialover: GLBTQ book about an adult coming back to address issues from childhood/teen years.
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Author: Robin Silverman
Published By: Bold Strokes Books
Age Recommended: Adult
Rating: 4
Blog For: GMTA

Review:

"Lemon Reef" by Robin Silverman was a real interesting read that displayed many flashbacks of two young ladies...Del(Adeline Soto) and Jenna in through HS. These two were more than just friends... actually Lesbians until it was brought to a stop by Jenna's parents. During this time there was a lost of things going on with Del...the bruises, hygiene, beatings, and custody threats... then there was 70's music...the problems Del had with her mom...Pascales...OMG ..this was really some time! The novel was rather long but if you can stick with it ..."Lemon Reef" does come through ... dealing with a very sensitive subject. As the story moves on Del has died. What happened to her and what will happen to her daughter Khila? Will Talon get custody of Khila? This is a fiction book about well you will simply have to pick up this novel for yourself.......off the chain...really some read. Also there is Jenna.. and even Talon. Now, I will stop at this point and say you must pick up "Lemon Reef" to find out what will happen to these people and what was so great about the 'Lemon Reef'? You will see there are no easy answers to this novel...only leaving you saying.... Wow! I am not sure I found this a great read for me but a good one that had many twist and turns and that will keep you turning the pages until the end. You will have to keep up or you may get lost and you don't want to do that!

There was a lot of characters...some were really interesting people that made this storyline come together...from Jenna, Katie, Del, Norma, Gail, Sid, Lance, Pascales, Bea McVee, Margaret Todd, Jason, Dirk Beasley, Alex Sanders, John, Ben Reed, Tar Baby, Ida, Nicole, Sam Kramer, Anne Sloan, Ms Fernandez, Doug Andrews, and Mel, Brian, Donald, Edie, Susan, Andrew, Khila, to Madison and I am sure I have left someone out. You must pick up "Lemon Reef" to find out who that is!

In this read you will read...about "reconciling with your past, coming out, being queer, and first love are all beautifully told within a plot that will keep the reader invested and interested." If you are in for a good fiction mystery read that will take you on a emotional roller coaster ride... you have come to the right place for this good read. Also, I believe it is a novel you will never forget! ( )
  arlenadean | Aug 16, 2012 |
This book was a bit of an emotional roller-coaster to read, which of course is a sign of a good book.

The plot structure is incredibly complex and engaging without ever being confusing. There is the mystery of Del’s death, but also (for the reader) the mystery of why and how Del and Jenna’s romance ended tragically, as it is evident it did.

There are no easy answers in this book, and no one is easily demonized, including Talon. Every single character has flaws and good qualities. Del stands up for her siblings but won’t stand up for her love of Jenna. Jenna loves people but can sometimes get too caught up in her own world and her own needs.

The writing is lovely and fills in the framing of the plot and the characters. There are lines that just totally grab you.

I also really enjoyed that while Jenna’s coming out story (told in flash-backs and reminiscing) is rather typical, Del’s is much more complex. She is bi but is uncomfortable with the fact that she likes women too. She doesn’t want people to know, doesn’t say a thing about it to her sisters, denies it even. But we find out later that there were other ways in which it was clear she did identify as bi and part of the community. I won’t say how, because I don’t want to spoil the surprise. But I found this complexity interesting. It shows how for Jenna she had to push and come out because there was no other option. Del could sometimes pass but not always and clearly it was a struggle for her throughout her whole life. This shows an understanding of what it is to be bi that I honestly was not expecting, as it is hard to find that in novels.

There were, unfortunately, a couple of things that didn’t quite live up to the rest of the book. There were a few passages that weren’t as well-written or well-edited that detracted from the overall beauty of the book.

I also was disappointed that we didn’t get to see very much at all in regards to how this whole drama of the first love’s mysterious death impacted Jenna’s relationship with her wife. It seems obvious to me that such an incident would at least lead to a few discussions and maybe difficult moments between a married couple. I wanted to see that and not seeing it made Madison and Jenna’s marriage to her feel more like a prop than an actual element of Jenna’s life.

Overall, though, this is a unique work of GLBTQ lit. Its themes of reconciling with your past, coming out, being queer, and first love are all beautifully told within a plot that keeps the reader invested and interested. I highly recommend it to GLBTQ readers, but also to anyone with an interest in stories addressing the complexity of human relationships and the long-reaching impact of first loves.

Check out my full review: http://wp.me/pp7vL-QF (Link will be live July 16, 2012). ( )
  gaialover | Jul 14, 2012 |
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"When Jenna Ross learns her high school love Del Soto died on Lemon Reef, she refuses to accept the official Miami medical examiner's report of death from natural causes. Lemon Reef is a realm of glimmering beauty, where marine life triumphs over industrial waste. Del and Jenna dove on it every day during the summer before their tenth grade year, their love for the reef deepening as their passion for each other grew. It is a site of tenacity and wonder that mirrored their own, until they were outed and forced to separate. Even fifteen later, Jenna knows that Del's heart could not have given out there. Grief stricken over Del's death and fearing that Del's young daughter may be in danger, Jenna risks all she has worked so hard for to return to Miami where she must dive into an excruciating past so that the truth of the present may surface"--P. [4] of cover.… (more)

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