Sometimes you don’t know who you love, until they love you …
When Jordan Hughes arrives at Pinecrest High School, Elliot Goldman’s graduating year suddenly gets a lot more interesting. Smart, good looking and charming, Jordan isn’t exactly the kind of person Elliot’s used to having as a lab partner. But when they start acing their assignments, life is suddenly about more than boring lectures, bad cafeteria nachos, or relentless bullying, and for the first time ever, Elliot can’t wait to get to chemistry class.
As they start spending more time together outside of school, Elliot realizes he’s never met anyone quite like Jordan. And then everything changes one night when Jordan kisses him, making Elliot question everything about their relationship and about himself. The butterflies start to make sense—the trouble is, right now, nothing else does.
Love was the last thing on Elliot’s mind. But as he begins to figure out how he really feels about Jordan, he realizes that sometimes the last thing you are looking for is the one thing you need the most.
[I received a digital arc for an honest review]
“When had my life become so complicated? Actually, I knew exactly when: the moment Jordan freaking Hughes waltzed into it.”
Lab Partners tells the story of high school senior Elliot Goldman. Like most high schoolers he’s worried about making a decision on college and is just trying to survive his final year of high school. He’s the victim of bullying but his motto is ‘better him than someone else’. However, his days are about to change when he is assigned a new lab partner. Jordan Hughes, the new kid in school and also Elliot’s new lab partner quickly becomes a friend. Then Jordan kisses him and makes Elliot question everything he thought he knew about himself. Now Elliot has to figure out his feelings on top of everything else in his teenage life.
Lab Partners has an enjoyable plot line with likable characters. Elliot was an incredible character who put himself in the way of a group of violent bullies to keep other kids off their radar. It hurt that he felt so isolated when in reality he had some strong support in his family if only he reached out for it. Jordan’s character didn’t fully sit well with me, at times I felt like he came on way to strong with Elliot and forced him to confront his feelings in a way I found off-putting. The writing itself was decent. I felt in the beginning it was a bit rigid and instructional but as the story progressed it seemed to read more fluidly.
Overall, this young adult contemporary novel had good LGBT representation and a realistic approach to the dark reality of bullying. I wouldn’t mind reading more from author Mora Montgomery in the future