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Language Lessons

3.58  ·  Rating Details ·  1,516 Ratings  ·  170 Reviews
Love doesn’t come easy. For Joey, he didn’t care if it ever came at all. He was much too busy adding notches to his bedpost and preparing for life as an adult. But when a causal fling waxes nostalgic about the one that got away, Joey starts to wonder if he isn’t missing something after all, if there really is something to be learned from the language of love.
Published April 18th 2011 by Smashwords
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Feb 12, 2017 Sheri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jay Bell is a master of illusions. Yep. I've figured out his secret.
He draws your attention to one thing...and you never noticed the 'other' thing until it's happened.
Expect the unexpected when it comes to Bell.

Great story....
great gift (thanks for the freebie!)
Sep 06, 2013 Jo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jo by: Justin
This is like the perfect book for a light, quick read. No angst, no real drama. Hot sex and yet weirdly innocent at the same time.
Aug 09, 2011 Jenre rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m, contemporary, romance
This review can also be found at Brief Encounters Reviews.

This is the first short I've read by Jay Bell, but I liked his longer Novel Something Like Summer, so when I saw this short I thought I'd give it a go. It begins with our third person narrator, Joey, getting ready to seduce a former crush - a job he does rather admirably and with a certain amount of flare. Joey's not interested in love, especially when sex is so easy to come by, but when a young man catches his eye, Joey begins to discove
3.5 stars

Lovely short story about a horny and annoying teenager
who slowly finds out what love is. Loved how the author wrote such a cute story with such a flawed MC.

Simple but highly true quote:

Without Scott, I just sit around wasting my life. But when we're together, every minute feels too important to waste, so I try to be the best person I can for him while trying to make him feel as special as he makes me feel
Anyta Sunday
Jul 12, 2014 Anyta Sunday rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5, LOVE this author's style. :)

Just went and bought four other books of his without even looking at the blurb, that's how impressed I am!
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Joey was very annoying little man in the first half of the story. I had to remind myself he is just a promiscuous sixteen-year-old (soon seventeen) boy to get through some of his thoughts and actions. His thoughts and the way he acted made it difficult to remember that. He just sounded older.
The act of reconnecting Scott and Bradley wasn't selfless - it was an experiment for Joey to see love.
Feb 13, 2014 Greg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: teen, romance
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 30, 2011 Raji rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Funny how a 0.99 cents book on Amazon is a free book on iTunes! I stumbled on this book when I was browsing through the shelves for more M/M books.

This is not a full fledged novel but a short story. But Jay, as usual, weaves his magic of words and characters. At first Joey felt a little bit unbelievable and unlikeable but as the story moved along, I could see exactly why Joey was, how he was - I guess abundance of sex makes you a bit jaded (but also very little of it can have the same effect LO
Jonathan Young
Jul 21, 2016 Jonathan Young rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: glbt
Still like a 3.5 but I never consider bad for a short story. It's kind of where I place the one's I like. This one was interesting because it kind of plays into the idea of gay guys being into hooking up instead of relationships. Joey didn't believe in love but really he just ignored it. Scott and Brad were a fun idea if a little unrealistic and sweet innocent Philip showed a kind of tentative look at how love can potentially blossom. Sweet and too the point Jay Bell does write some nice little ...more
Jun 08, 2012 Monika rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: g-short-under-50
4.5 Stars

I can see how a lot of people could dislike Joey but I really liked him, he had a cavalier attitude about sex and while I’m not a fan of that I thought he was funny, charming and sweet. It was so cute watching him play match maker with Bradley and Scott and even funnier watching him go on his first real “date” with Phillip. I really liked this short but all good shorts I wish it was longer.

This was my first time reading Jay Bell but it certainly won’t be my last.
When will I learn that with Jay Bell the MC will never end up with the person I expect. Or the second person.

I love Jay Bell fluff just as much as his angst. Super cute!
May 26, 2014 Mike rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gay-fiction
I wanted to give this three stars. For one thing, it was free. For another, the author's writing technique is strong IMO.

But I can't. It really just feels like this story missed its own point. I think what it was supposed to be is a story of a boy who realizes that there are better things than casual sex out there.

(view spoiler)
May 18, 2011 Alex rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: queer, romance
Stars: 3.5/5

A funny and touching story in which a young playboy learns about love outside the bedroom. The story is light and humorous, never delving too deep but it is definitely romantic. It could be described as schmaltzy, but I think it's meant to be diabetes-inducing. At least, it worked for me.

The main character is a mix of knowledgeable/jaded and innocent; he knows everything about sex and nothing about love, except maternal and friendship. He's an interesting narrator, although h
Enjoyable short contemporary mm romance. Joey's character is flawed but very endearing. He has been chasing meaningless one-night-stands until he is intrigued by one guy's tale of true love. Joey goes out to find it for himself. I love the little personality traits of all the characters that shine through this story. I liked the author's non-stereotypical (in mm stories) treatment of Joey's mum and also the ending which gave me the same sort of mushy feeling as the end of the movie Love Actually ...more
May 01, 2011 Yvonne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-m, m-m-young-love
Young Joey who is a veteran of the one night stands at 17, becomes intrigued by the idea that some people get together for more than just sex. When a former crush returns to the neighborhood, he sets out on a journey to find out more about this thing called love. His quest leads him to very interesting mini adventures & to possibly a love of his own. This is a very cute, sweet & funny short story.
Lil' Grogan
May 01, 2011 Lil' Grogan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour, ya, shorts, 4, contemp-rom, gay
I feel like one of Joey's charmed victims... brat. The unfolding of who Joey is was done really well, with good pacing in revealing the less charming aspects of his personality along with those that had me rooting for him to find his own romance. Sly bits of humour were also well timed.
Emma Sea
This short is written well, I just didn't like any of the characters. It's not Jay Bell's fault I didn't like the book, it's mine.
Lena Grey
Apr 28, 2011 Lena Grey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
'Language Lessons' by Jay Bell takes a look at Joey, a 17 year old young man, who hasn't experienced and doesn't understand the necessity of being in love. He flits around, somewhat irresponsibility, dwelling on the superficial things in life, not caring about the consequences. Joey thinks he has it all, but having everything on a temporary basis, eventually catches up with you.

At first, I didn't like Joey at all. I thought he was a conceited, shallow, little ass! He certainly was a master of ma
Jan 03, 2014 Ed rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a cute (maybe a little too cute?) short story about a 16 year-old guy who because of his parents' failed marriage does not believe in love. Instead he is really only interested in regularly getting laid. There's nothing necessarily wrong with that especially when you have the raging hormones of 16. That's just who Joey is. When we first meet Joey he is home and sees through his window a guy whom he has longed to snag for at least two years and who has just come home from college. For the ...more
2.5 stars.
A while ago I read another short story from this author, which was Like & Subscribe and I didn't really like it. I decided to give Jay Bell another opportunity and I read Language Lessons.
Just NO. Again. Sorry.
In my reviews I always complain about how much I love or hate characters -and how well done sometimes they are. This time I have to say that -again- I hated Jay Bell's characters.
I also don't like the way this author talks about homosexuality in his books. In Jay Bell's books
Jul 10, 2011 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not a fan of short stories but I am a fan of the Authors work so I decided to give Language Lessons a go.

As short stories go, it was ok.

Were Introduced to Joey, a confident 17 year old who is only interested in one thing, Sex, well ok, 2 things, Sex and his appearance, but the latter is only a device to help him obtain the former. He hooks up with an old crush and learns of said crush's love for another. Joey architects a meet with the two of them at a restaurant and whilst there, meets Phi
Michael Joseph
Mar 08, 2012 Michael Joseph rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gay-contemporary
At just 17, the out and very clothing conscious Joey is already a bit of a player. He enjoys the game of seducing and bedding every cute guy he meets. Love doesn't enter into it. Joey isn't sure he even believes in love. But then a bit of pillow talk with an old crush he's finally conquered has him considering the possibility. Joey's life is further complicated when he encounters Phillip, a dreamy little twink that has Joey doing things he wouldn't ordinarily do, like actually getting to know a ...more
Edina Rose
May 21, 2011 Edina Rose rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short, coming-of-age
I felt in love with Joey and Phillip.

You don't know what love is until you at least witness it. That is what happened to Joey. Nearly 17, cute and openly gay, supported by a loving mother, ignored by an absent dad who at least sent some child support, Joey is a slut with a lot of freedom for his age. Love? He does not understand what all the fuss is about. It will take seeing two boys in love and bringing them together to make him realise that maybe, just maybe, he is missing something. When Ph
Jan 09, 2012 Fangtasia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone hankering for a sweet, young romance morsel
This short story once again proves why Jay Bell is so good at writing YA M/M.

Joey's behavior reflects what he sees at home. His parents are divorced, Mom is always in search of Mr. Right, but having lots of fun with Mr. Right Now while looking. Joey is always on the prowl for quick, no-strings sex. Sex appeal, self-confidence, he's got it and knows how to use it. Just finished high school, why think of a long-term relationship bliss with so much short-term hook-up happy around? Then Joey's curi
Jul 03, 2012 Beck rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book will go straight into my 'Utter Bilge' folder. Joey was a teenager with self-esteem issues camouflaged with snappy clothes. He also had serious cynicism regarding love. Instead of exploring these issues, the author related a shallow tale of hormone-driven sex. Joey and his mother were shallow under-developed characters who were difficult to like. I couldn't stomach finishing the book and I am unable to find anything positive to say about it except that it was free.

Originally posted on
K.C. Beaumont
I really, REALLY wanted to hate Joey from the beginning. Superficial, cocky, and motivated by his libido. Then again, he is a teenaged boy, and for most teenaged boys, that's par for the course. His lack of verbal filter upon meeting Phillip made me want to slap the snot out of him, but I was grateful to see he redeemed himself as his story progressed.

I love the way Mr. Bell tells a story and I'm impressed that even with a short story, he can make me run the gamut with emotions. Looking forward
Kendra T
This was an OK read for me. Joey annoyed me a bit, but he was a typical 16 y/o boy. Felt awkward to me as I am not typically a fan of the younger age romance. Phillip was a sweet character, and although everyone deserves redemption, I didn't like Joey for him because he deserved better for his first boyfriend. I guess, however, that is usual for young love. Don't know if I believed Joey would be what Phillip needed.
3.5 stars.

This story is really cute. Joey is a great character. I love his attitude and the fact that he thinks he has it all figured out at the ripe old age of 17. His gradual realization that there might be more to life than casual hook-ups is fun to watch. The secondary characters are endearing too. Recommended.
Mar 30, 2014 Matthew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this to be a really sweet, happy short story. I was so happy to see love work, and to see Joey learn to love that I wanted to share it with other people. Other than Joey being 16 and manipulative, I think everyone would love seeing the cynic learn to love. It's a cute little work and I recommend it for everyone who isn't uncomfortable with underage protagonists.
Alex Akira
Jan 01, 2012 Alex Akira rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book! Especially the authors ability to find new and fun ways to say the same old things! It is a captivating, funny and extremely charming effort by one of my favorite authors and I almost feel guilty that I picked it up for free.
Lovely book Jaye Bell. Smashing!
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Jay Bell never gave much thought to Germany until he met a handsome foreign exchange student. At that moment, beer and pretzels became the most important thing in the world. After moving to Germany and getting married, Jay found himself desperate to communicate the feelings of alienation, adventure, and love that surrounded this decision, and has been putting pen to paper ever since.
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“...and history felt like a conjuring trick. All of this had been in plain view the entire time, but only now did the magician allow Joey to see it all.” 1 likes
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