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Toughskins

3.22  ·  Rating Details  ·  9 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Love can begin in the most unlikely of places, including a "mom and pop shop" wrestling league. John and Bret, two twenty-something athletes who separately endured abuse in their pasts, do what they know—they beat up themselves and each other—until one hero-seeking boy turns their lives around with the question, "Why do you hurt each other?"

John’s heartache begins with a b
...more
Paperback, 264 pages
Published January 17th 2012 by Bold Strokes Books (first published January 1st 2012)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-29 of 40)
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Benjamin
Dec 23, 2015 Benjamin rated it liked it
Raised by a succession of foster parents, at the age of seventeen John is in the care of Greg. John idolises his foster parent and willingly puts himself at Greg's disposal, and while he thinks he is in love with Greg the feeling is not reciprocated; it eventually leads to disaster when John finds himself thrown out. John turns to the only stable thing in his life, his wrestling, and starts to train for the professional ring. After a few false starts in his relationships he meets Bret, his equal ...more
Jay Lesiger
Oct 05, 2013 Jay Lesiger rated it it was amazing
An unusual and very heartfelt book. After learning that the book had been nominated for this year's Lambda award as Best Romance, I was very eager to read it, and was not disappointed in the least. A beautiful story about two young, fledgling wrestlers, and how they struggle to find themselves and each other, having come from very difficult backgrounds. Clearly, for author Will Masswa, love and understanding can conquer all, and you would be hard-pressed to find a more romantic or sensitive nove ...more
Don
Sep 26, 2015 Don rated it really liked it
Can a guy from the foster home system, who has known nothing but abuse, rejection and pain find true love, while making something of himself, in the world of professional wresting? For me John is one of the most aggravating characters I've read in a long time. Dozens of times it was "he wants to say something, but remains silent...." and I just wanted to throw the book across the room. This technique of angst filled inner turmoil is actually very well written and kept me turning the pages.
Jendi
May 05, 2014 Jendi rated it really liked it
A heartfelt romance, with good insight into how guys act versus how they feel inside. It was inspiring to see the characters (and the author) take the risk of showing tenderness between men. Sentence structure was sometimes clunky, though. I would like to read more by this author.
Dee
Apr 03, 2013 Dee rated it it was ok
I picked this up based upon a great review that I read. The blurb sounded promising. Evidently we have different tastes. I deleted it from my kindle after going through about 20% of the novel. The book was hard to follow. I had difficulty trying to figure out what was real and what was his imagination or daydreaming. The main character's life was depressing. As I continued to read I thought the depression would lift but it never did. I gave up.
Cliff
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