[New in Review] Cinnamon Toast and The End of The World

Author: Janet E. Cameron

Publisher: Hachette Books Ireland

Date Published: May 7th 2013

Format: Trade Paperback

Source: From the publisher

Synopsis:

House Parties. Pick-Up Trucks. Cherry-Vanilla Ice-Cream. Prom Night. Unrequited Love. Welcome to the spring of 1987 and the world of Stephen Shulevitz who, with three months of high school to go in the small town of Riverside, Nova Scotia, has just realised he’s fallen in love – with exactly the wrong person. Welcome to the end of the world. As Stephen navigates his last few months before college dealing with his overly dependent mother, his distant, pot-smoking father, and his dysfunctional best friends Lana and Mark, he must decide between love and childhood friendship; between the person he is and the person he can be. But sometimes leaving the past behind is harder than it seems . . . Cinnamon Toast and the End of the World is a bittersweet story of growing up and of one young man finding happiness on his own terms.

Number of Days It Took to Read: 3

Cover:

Simple and nice cover.

The Writing Score: 3.5 out of 5

Recommendation: A Causal Perusal

Memorable or Forgettable: Memorable

Rating:  3.5 out of 5

Review:

In a small Canadian town in the 1980s, a teenage boy named Stephan is slowly coming to terms with the fact that he is in love with his best friend Mark. The only problem is that Mark is a guy, and homosexuality is frowned upon especially in a small town and in the 80s.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. The book’s strengths lie with its narrator, Stephan. Despite the fact that I am not a teenage boy living in the 1980s who is coming to terms with his sexuality, Stephan still managed to endear me to him as a character.  As a narrator Stephan is definitely engaging and his self deprecating humour really adds to the story. Out of all the supporting characters, I liked Lena the best. Regardless of her flaws, she was gusty and a strong character in her own way and I loved her unconditional support of Stephan. Finally while I despised Mark for most of the book, his love for his younger sister redeemed him slightly in my eyes.

Cameron’s writing really reflects the time that the story takes places, as a lot of the language includes terms we don’t really use nowadays. Additionally I loved the cultural antidotes included throughout the book as it really helped with the setting of the story. Overall I think Cameron does an excellent job of capturing teenage angst during the 1980s and the pains of growing up and discovering who you really are. I would recommend this book to older teen readers and adults. Whether you are straight, gay, bisexual or still discovering who you are this is book is a great read.

– Linh

The opinions expressed in this review are my own; I did not receive any compensation in exchange for this review.

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