In an effort to build a space for queer people like myself, every Tuesday I’ll be posting interviews, opinion pieces, listicals, reviews, and more focused on the LGBT community (and occasionally about the Latinx/WOC community since I am Latinx.) Welcome to Queerly Not Straight! Enjoy and leave a comment below if you have a suggestion for what I should cover next.
We’re not going to lie, coming into a story like The Key to You and Me by Jaye Robin Brown had us nervous. This isn’t the type of book we read. In fact, coming out stories are our least favorite when it comes to LGBTQ stories because we feel like it’s been done, over and over. But in spite of that, the bond that grows between Piper and Kat is worth knowing and reading about. And we found ourselves falling in like with these two young women the more we read.
Piper is trying to forget her ex, who broke her heart, by going to visit her grandmother for the summer. She’s a talented horseback rider who wants to make it to the big leagues, so she’s killing two birds with one stone. She’s awkward, kind, messy, and painfully human in a way that doesn’t seem abrasive or like we don’t want to read anymore. And her plans of a chill summer are thrown for a loop when she meets Kat.
Kat is in the closet. Not so far in the closet that she can’t realize the bond growing between her and Piper from the first time they meet. But she’s in there, hiding from herself, and those around her because she fears being in the spotlight. And even though she’s an anxious mess, she tries her hardest to make the lives of the people around her better, no matter what mountains she needs to move.
The sparks are there from the very moment they meet. What grows from there is built on a foundation of friendship, honesty, and self-discovery. And the bond that grows between them is further accentuated by the alternating perspectives, something that we also don’t usually enjoy but did like in The Key to You and Me because of how it enriched the story and it’s leads.
As the story progresses, the people they present themselves to be (as everyone does when they initially meet someone) starts disappearing and they gain perspective on who they are, what relationships are all about, and that you can move on without feeling guilty. You can live your life without worrying about what others think. And you can give yourself the time and patience needed to discover who you are.
In all honesty, The Key to You and Me reminded us of what the best relationships are built on, what we’d like to see more of when it comes to LGBTQ ships, and that the place you’re in when it comes to being queer might not be the same place where someone else is at. That doesn’t make their story any less worth telling or exploring. So, go on with your bad self, The Key to You and Me. You got this. And I think readers will appreciate the story you tell.
Buy The Key to You and Me HERE.
Add The Key to You and Me to your Goodreads HERE.
Check out the author website for Jaye Robin Brown HERE.
Queerly Not Straight posts every Tuesday with opinion pieces, listicals, reviews, and more focused on the LGBT community (and occasionally about the Latinx community since I am Latinx.)