Growing Pains by Cass Lennox
Review by Lauren
source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own
Official Summary: Gigi Rosenberg is living his best life: performances in the big city, side gigs at a dance company, a successful drag act, and the boy of his childhood dreams who now adores him. Even if the boyfriend part isn’t the sparkly ride of passion he expected it to be, life is sweet. So when his sister’s wedding calls him back to his hometown, he sees an opportunity to show the hicks from his past how wrong they were about him. Only, his boyfriend isn’t quite on board.
Brock Stubbs left their hometown and his parents behind for a reason, and the prospect of facing them again is terrifying. He swore he’d never go back, but Gigi has made it clear refusal isn’t an option, and Brock will do nearly anything for him. There’s just one deal-breaker of a problem: Brock promised Gigi he was out to everyone, including his parents. He lied.
It’s magical to run into the sunset together, but staying the course takes work. For Gigi and Brock, going home feels like the finale of a long, disappointing year. Sometimes love isn’t all you need.
Review: Growing Pains is the third in the Toronto Connections series and I absolutely loved it. I really liked the first two, but this is probably my favorite of the bunch. Gigi and Brock have a pretty big role in the second book - Finding Your Feet - but this book is all about them. The two have been dating for awhile now, after a high school history that left Gigi heartbroken, and things seem to be going well. That is until the two are supposed to go back to their hometown for the wedding of Gigi's sister. Brock is pretty adamant that he doesn't want to be there.
The thing with Brock and Gigi that might bother some is that they don't always communicate. However, there are reasons for this and they work for me, so hopefully you won't be agitated by that. The two fight a lot over the weekend, but truths are slowly revealed and hurts are addressed. While they might not be getting along all the time in the present, there are chapters that show their love story coming together in the past - and moments in the present that remind them and the readers that they are meant to be. There is drama - and some of it is quite serious (though that's not between our two main characters) and it definitely broke my heart a little. I loved these two together, and I thought their journey was written well!