Gemini Bites by Patrick Ryan
Copy from: Borrowed
Due Out: March 1, 2011
Review by: Lauren
Official Summary: One of the strangest (and funniest) love triangles ever to hit YA fiction, when a pair of twins (one boy, one girl) both fall for the boy who moves in with them…who may or may not be a vampire.
Judy and Kyle Renneker are sixteen-year-old fraternal twins in a rambling family of nine. They have a prickly history with each other and are, at least from Judy's perspective, constantly in fierce competition. Kyle has recently come out of the closet to his family and feels he might never know what it's like to date a guy. Judy, who has a history of pretending to be something she isn't in order to get what she wants, is pretending to be born-again in order to land a boyfriend who heads his own bible study.
When their parents announce that the family is going to be taking in a fellow student for a month so that he can finish the school year before moving away, both Kyle and Judy can't help but sit up and take notice. Garret Johnson, who is taking temporary residence in the newly finished attic, is a young man who moved into town less than a year ago and who is a mysterious, goth loner . . . and claims to be a vampire. He's not an easy person to get to know by any means, but the twins find him (to varying degrees) both strange and alluring.
GEMINI BITES explores what it means to pretend to be something you aren't, what happens when that backfires, and how in-your-face honesty is almost always the best course of action.
Review: While it's not certain if Garret is gay or straight...or even bi...Kyle is out and well, pretty much proud of who he is. He's never dated anyone, but had some experience with guys and his best friend happens to be gay as well. Kyle is pretty amusing as he's a huge exaggerator and yet he finds himself starting to become more and more interested in Garret who swears that he's a vampire. Well, one of their fellow classmates seems to believe it and he'll do just about anything he can to rid their school of evil...even if that means ridding them of Garret altogether.
As for Judy, whenever she finds she likes a guy...she starts to become "interested" in whatever they like and her recent conquest is all about the bible. But when Judy realizes that Kyle is starting to like Garret, she can't let her brother win, can she?
The book is told in alternating chapters...first Judy, then Kyle, and so on. I seemed to enjoy Kyle's story line a little more...but then again, I did first pick up this book for the LGBT content and that would be Kyle. He's also a funny character and you really do start to care for him and the way he's treated by Judy. This is especially poignant since the twins come from a big family and it's hard to find time with their parents.
Judy is a good character to though. She really goes through her own progressions and you'll find yourself shaking your head, yet letting laughter slip out, at some of her more mean statements.
In all, both teens are well-rounded and I felt like you got to see a big picture of who they were and what they were interested in. Kyle wasn't just the horny teen guy obsessing over boys...and Judy wasn't just a mean "actress" trying to get a boyfriend. You even see an interesting side of her, good and bad, when it comes to her best friend, Sasha. This girl was an amusing character, but you do feel for her as well...and it reminded me a lot of Brittany on GLEE. She's a bit ditsy and clueless and yet can see things that other people look over sometimes. You just have to love her!
As for their family, they were a lot of fun. The three younger siblings were a bit hard to keep straight sometimes...but the eldest, Tommy and Dexter, seemed to be their own people in the little time they had to "shine." Their parents were also very sweet and you could tell they cared and wanted to be there for their kids as much as they could...even though it's hard with a house full of them.
I'm really thankful I was given the chance to read Gemini Bites. I would definitely recommend it!
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