Oh my God. Wow. Day-um. As usual, when it comes to Jamie, I am in awe of what I’ve read/what she wrote. Outcast is just EVERYTHING!
This is Ezra’s book, who happens to be Jimmy’s little brother from Dropout. Outcast starts out with Ezra in high school. He is a freshman who is picked on by other kids in the school for a disability that makes him walk with a limp, therefore making him slow in the hallways, ‘being a little soft around his middle’ for his lack of physical activities and a big case of low self-esteem. On one of his bad days, he has a brief moment of sunshine in the form of a new girl in school, Kayla. That moment is squashed when one of the football players indicates that she can sit next to him. So, Ezra is back to drawing and longing from afar. Fast forward to senior year (almost graduation) when Ezra and Kayla take off.
Ezra is off to an intense Physical Therapy boot camp while Kayla is stuck at home. They are relegated to snail mail and the occasional call. They are both attending the same college and this is what gets them through. Before sending Ezra off to college, his parents present him with a German Shephard service dog, Pierre. (Side note: Pierre is everything, he is so cute and lovable. Yes, I’m writing about a fictional dog, but Ms. Schlosser has written him so well, it’s like he was there with me). Back to college, Ezra has changed physically (more fit and able to walk without a limp most times) and he has gone through a mini makeover to update how he feels inside. His self-esteem is higher and generally feels better about himself.
Ezra and Kayla are the epitome of sweet, saccharine sweet young love. They are ‘it’ together and it was refreshing to read a book that explores young, college, virginal love that is true and built to last. Do they have their ups and downs? Of course, what couple doesn’t, but they mature and grow together as a couple while exploring themselves individually. I love them as a couple, but I LOVE EZRA! He was your ‘non’-hero hero and it was fantastic.
Something else that was executed flawlessly and at an incredibly poignant time in the real world were some of the topics that these two go through. Two main themes are bullying and hazing. Even though these are fictional characters, it is very hard to read these topics and not think of our youth (no matter what age they are) experiencing this on a daily basis. Whether this is through school, activates or just anywhere in the outside world. It was touching and sad at the same time. SO PERFECTLY WELL WRITTEN!!
Outcast is a very sweet, emotional read without ‘external’ drama. It is about a boy, a girl and of course, my sweet Pierre. Through the course of their ride from high school to college to the real world, they meet some great secondary characters. For those of you that have read, ‘Dropout’, Jimmy and Mackenna do make an appearance, so it was great to get a little follow up from them.
This book is everything! It encompasses so many great topics, emotions, sweet love to a HEA! I HIGHLY, HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend it! It was beautiful and exquisitely written. There is one area I must address. There appears to be a little war on my boyfriend through social media (Book Snob Sue😉), but I will concede on the terms that I get Pierre and get dibs on Jamie Schlosser’s next hero!! In all seriousness, don’t even sample this book and just one-click! If I could, I’d give it more than 5 stars, but I can’t, so I will say here and now that I give it 5+ stars!! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
“—But I can promise you one thing. You are, and will always be, my favorite thing about life.”